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Posts Tagged ‘Claudio Castagnoli’

A Reporter’s Reflections: ROH Commentary, Dec. 5

Posted by reimaginejournalism on December 14, 2008

By Kari Williams

For the second time this year, working with Missouri Wrestling Revival initiated me to the live experience of a class-act wrestling show I otherwise may not have attended. I was not sure what to expect upon arrival, but I got everything I could have asked for—and so much more.

Once the doors opened, I quickly scoped out the merchandise table and planned to splurge on ROH gear. However, I first needed to find Brian Kelley to discuss the website and this piece you are reading now. Upon finding him, I talked with the High Voltage Wrestling promoter, TNT Keny G, and saw many familiar faces—Pierre Abernathy, Evan Gelistico, Billy McNeil, Kurt Styles and Gary the Barnowl, just to name a few.

I soon made my way back to the merchandise table and proceeded to spend $50 on a t-shirt and a hoodie, where I ran into Greg Jovi, who designed the FIST t-shirts. He told me that he needed to find Steven Kennedy because Kennedy told him that he would be there with bells on. Greg brought bells for Kennedy. Haha.

Prior to the actual start of the show, there were two ‘dark’ matches (for lack of a better word). The first one put Hunter Matthews against Steve Anthony. As the bout began, Matthews told the fans, “No cat calls, please.” Then, only moments into Matthews’ entrance, a “Hannah Montana” chant started. Anthony ended up catching Matthews with a quick roll-up for the pin. Having  never been to a show before, the opening match opened my eyes to what ROH truly is—entertaining, enjoyable and filled with superb wrestling.

The next dark match set Dirty Ernie against Brandon Marino. This bout did not do as much as the first to make me become an active follower of ROH, but it did keep me intrigued. Ernie secured the win after choking Marino on the ropes early in the game and then after losing control, he quickly regained his dominance and secured victory.

As the show truly got under way, the announcement came that MsChif would not compete and that the SHIMMER title would not be defended. However, a bonus match came about as a replacement.

Kenny King wrestled Kenny Omega in a spectacular display of athleticism. King had the first big takedown, which was followed up by back and forth action into a standoff that produced applause from the captivated audience. Soon after this, King and Omega found their way to the outside, where King pummeled Omega into the guardrail. Once they moved back into the ring, King delivered a beautiful snap suplex that received respectable praise. Omega gave the match a bit of humor when he said, “You son of a B!” following a nearfall. After connecting with an enziguri kick, Omega secured victory with a roll-up.

Rhet Titus and Sal Rinauro took on Grizzly Grimwood and Bushwhacker Luke Williams in the first of many tag team matches. Grimwood and Williams played to the crowd, causing Titus and Rinauro to use that to their advantage; but they were quickly thrown out of the ring. As the match progressed, both teams took it to the limit to please the crowd. They also proved their worth and showed me what I’ve been missing out on. Titus stole the victory for his team with a roll-up where he grabbed the tights.

The bonus match took place next, pitting Tony Kozina versus Bao Nguyen. Many people seemed uninterested in the match, and I heard grumblings from those sitting around me that this was not a good replacement for the SHIMMER title match. Personally, I thought the match was fine. It could have been better, but then again it could have also been much worse. Nonetheless, Nguyen and Kozina wrestled a fairly even match, where Nguyen’s athleticism outweighed Kozina’s near the end. Nguyen suplexed Kozina into a bridge and earned himself a three count.

An insanely impressive tag team gauntlet followed, with the first two teams being Brent Albright and Eric Stevens and Irish Airborne (Jake and David Crist). Both of these teams amazed me with their skill in the ring. Albright and Stevens advanced to the second round of the tournatment, and faced Sweet & Sour’s Davey Richards and Bobby Dempsey. Richards’ intensity translated to the fans, who ate up his presence. However, everyone seemed to care more for Dempsey, who Richards intentionally kicked and pounded on. The two did work together long enough to make it to the next round as Stevens tried to use a boot that Larry Sweeney threw into the ring, the referee disualified Stevens.

The Briscoe Brothers, Jay and Mark, rushed to the ring and made their presence felt against the weakened Dempsey and Richards. Bringing additional, pure athleticism to the bout, the Briscoes astounded me with their skill, as I hade never seen them prior to this show. As cohesively as the Briscoes worked together, Dempsey and Richards seemed to fall apart at the seems, which more than likely caused their downfall. After Jay and Mark left the ring, Sweeney attacked Dempsey and slapped him right across the face, which, among other things, caused Dempsey to sulk to the back, bloody nose and all.

A brief intermission ensued, and then the match I deemed my personal favortie began—Jimmy Jacobs and Delirious versus Ace Steel and Necro Butcher. The moment that Age of the Fall’s (AoTF) music blared through the speakers, I was hooked. I had heard a lot about AoTF online and from other people, but I did not fully appreciate them until seeing witnessing their presence live. So much happened in this match, and I got so captivated by the match, that I did not write down the specifics of what happened. These four men battled in and out of the ring, eliciting an “ROH” chant and applause from the crowd. In the closing moments of the bout, as Jacobs and Delirious had Necro and Steel in a weakened state, Jacobs gave a foreign object to Delirious who contemplated using it. Daizee Haze then came to ring side and talked him out of doing so, ultimately costing them the match. Haze apologized to Jacobs who walked away in disgust; she then raised Steel and Necro’s hands. When everyone else left the ring, Delirious received an overwhelming applause.

Tyler Black took on Austin Aries in a classic match that had fans raving for more. Before the bell rang, Aries got on the mic and said that he wanted to put everything aside and have a classic match with Black—and that they did. Both men showed their strengths and gave the fans everything they asked for. Aries and Black battled inside and outside the squared circle, in a match with too many nearfalls to count. Impressive move after impressive move warranted a “This is awesome!” chant. In the end, Black established his dominance as he defeated Aries, much to the delight of the jam-packed crowd. Aries received a standing ovation for his work as Black walked victoriously to the back.

The highly anticipated main event put Claudio Castagnoli and the ROH World Champion Nigel McGuinness against Jerry Lynn and Brian Danielson. A “Best in the World” chant rose up out of the crowd as McGuinness made his way to the ring. This was simply tag team wrestling at its best. Frequent tags, cutting the ring in half, multiple near falls and an all-together great chemistry between the teams made the match fantastic. Lynn secured his team’s fate while delivering a piledriver to Castagnoli.

After the final match, I spoke with Brian Kelley and Chuck from Slamzone, who only had positive things to say about the night. The matches were spectacular, the atmosphere was almost cult-like and everything came together perfectly. Now, I know I am not an expert, but, in my humble opinion, this show proved what wrestling is all about—pure competition, incredible athleticism and quality matches every match.

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MWR October 2008 Awards

Posted by flairwhoooooo on November 18, 2008

October Wrestler of the Month

 wyatt

Jeremy Wyatt [ PWP] [LWA] [3XW]

 

No wrestler in the Midwest is as hot as Jeremy “The Rebel” Wyatt. On October 17th at 3XW he earned the right to be the number one contender to the 3xw Pure Championship title held by Tyler Cook by defeating former Pure Champion Maddog McDowell and international star Arik Cannon.

 

 A week later he returned to LWA where he cashed in his Medallion to LWA President Luke Roberts before Roberts could declare the LWA title strip the injured Jordan Lacey of the belt. Since Lacey could not defend the belt, Roberts had no other choice but to give the Rebel the title. Wyatt never one to walk away from a fight successfully defended the belt that night in another three way, this time with KC Karrington and once again Arik Cannon.

 

Less than 24 hours, Wyatt made his way to Pro Wrestling Phoenix to take on the mammoth Abu Colossus for the PWP Championship. Wyatt was able to defeat one of the most impressive big men in the Midwest to become the new PWP Champion. It is only fitting that Jeremy Wyatt wins once again in October.

 

1st Runner Up – Casanova [3XW]
2nd Runner Up –
“Bloody” Harker Dirge [NBWA]
3rd Runner Up –
Shane Rich [AAPW]

 

 

 

Others receiving votes: AJ Williams [MMWA-SICW]

 

October Tag Team of the Month

northstar-express1

 

The Northstar Express (Ryan Cruz and Darin Corbin) [PWP] [AAW] [LWA]

 

The Northstar Express traveled to LWA for a classic match up between Johnny Vinyl & Davey Vega. The upstart tag team of Vinyl and Vega was able to get the upset win. The Northstar Express did not let that get them down as they headed to PWP and took on one of the arch rivals the LONRS for the Tag team titles. The LONRS had beaten the Northstar Express twice before this encounter so with their final chance to become the PWP Tag Team Champions, in a match up between two of the top tag teams in the Midwest, the Northstar Express was able to get the belts that have eluded them all year.

 

 

1st Runner Up – The LONRS (Mark Sterling and Darrien Sanders [AAPW] [PWP]
2nd Runner Up –
Johnny Vinyl & Davey Vega [LWA]
3rd Runner Up
Dinn T. Moore & Brian Breaker [WLW]

 

 

October Women of the Month

 

Amy Henning [WLW]

 

Not content in just being the daughter of Curt “Mr Perfect” Henning, Amy has worked hard at WLW. The first match ups between her and Stacey O’Brien was the classic wily veteran taking advantage of young rookie. On October 24th in Warsaw Missouri, Amy proved that she is a quick learner and defeated O’Brien to become the new WLW Ladies Champion. MWR staff took notice and voted her the October Women of the Month

 

1st Runner Up –Stacey O’ Brien  [WLW]  
2nd Runner Up – Malia Hosaka [3XW]
3rd Runner Up –Melanie Cruise [POWW]

 

October Promotion of the Month

high-voltage

 

High Voltage Wrestling

 

Many doubted the new promotion in St Louis capable of having a show much less being successful. HVW on October 4th welcomed fans and wrestlers alike to come and see what they were all about.  The night showcased powerhouses Donovan Ruddick, High flyers DaCobra, a top tag team in the Hybirds and a ACU-30 Title defense.  HVW delivered a rollercoaster of action and suspense that impressed the wrestling world.

 

High Voltage Wrestling understands that they can not fly under the radar. They have reloaded for their next show. They will crown the first HVW Champion when “The Future” Donovan Ruddick takes on Brandon Espinosa. Mark Sterling will battle DaCobra and Kahagas has been brought in to take on MWR Wrestler of the Month Jeremy Wyatt. This and much more is why HVW has earned the respect of MWR.

 

 

1st Runner Up –LWA  
2nd Runner Up – 3XW
3rd Runner Up –PWP

Others receiving votes – IWA Productions,

 

October personality of the Month

josh-ray-and-family

 

Josh C Ray

 

A good leader is able to make those around him strive to reach their full potential.  He can inspire confidence in others and draws out the trust and best efforts of the team. All this is true of Josh Ray.

 

Josh C Ray built Missouri Wrestling Revival out of respect and love for Pro Wrestling. MWR has the same qualities as the owner who started it. Josh is caring, hardworking, trustworthy, and passionate along with the highest integrity.

 

 He has spent countless hours working on the site, reaching out his hand to whoever needed it.  He never settled for anything but the best. He introduced the MWR “Wrestling Revival Cup” rankings and spearheaded the MWR Best of the Midwest series which is a dream to show other wrestling fans that the Midwest has some of the best talent in the world.    

 

He is married to a beautiful woman, who is also his best friend, Sara. They are proud parents of a young son Jalen.  I dare you to have a conversation with him that doesn’t mention his boy Jalen.

 

A proud American who has served our country once before, he has once again been called by his country to return to Iraq. His dream to support Pro Wrestling will stay alive while he is gone, but he still looks forward to returning to Missouri to lend a helping hand to Midwest pro wrestling

 

Josh, your colleagues have awarded you with the MWR October Personality of the month.

   

 

 

 

1st Runner Up –Tiffany Lafane [LWA]

 

Others receiving votes: None

 

October Match of the Month

pwp-301

 

The Norhtstar Express

Vs.

The LONRS

[Pro Wrestling Phoenix]

October 25th in Council Bluffs, IA

 

The LONRS had twice defeated The Northstar Express while retaining the Pro Wrestling Phoenix Tag Team Titles. On October 25th, the LONRS (Mark Sterling and Darrien Sanders) looked to have their number once again. The Northstar Express Ryan Cruz and Darin Corbin) would not give up. One PWP fans stated “I’ve never heard stiffer superkicks in my 3 years of PWP fandom”. In a night of near falls, the Northstar Express walked away with the win but both teams earned the October Match of the Month.  

 

 

1st Runner Up-

 

 Triple threat match for the LWA title

Jeremy Wyatt vs. Arik Cannon vs. KC Karrington

[LWA]

October 24th in O’Fallon, IL

 

2nd Runner Up-

AAW Heavyweight Title match

Tyler Black vs. Claudio Castagnoli

[AAW]

October 4th in Berwyn, IL

 

3rd Runner Up-

3XW Pure Championship Match

Tyler Cook vs. Shane Hollister

[3xw]

October 17th in Des Moines, IA

 

Others receiving votes

All American Pro Wrestling Tag Team title match

Phoenix Twins vs. The LONRS

October 18th in Royalton, IL

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Between the Turnbuckles

Posted by Admin on September 15, 2008

Between The Turnbuckles
By Peter Hahn

I am quite sure that most readers of Missouri Wrestling Revival already know the great news, but for those that haven’t heard yet, Ring of Honor is going to debut in the St. Louis area on December 5, 2008! Seeing as the event was recently announced and is months away, we can only speculate on what Ring of Honor is going to give the fans of St. Louis. Hopefully, over the next several weeks, I will be able to give an idea of what we can expect at Ring of Honor’s St. Louis debut and more.

Part 1 – New Markets in 2008
So far in 2008, Ring of Honor has expanded into three new markets. I say “expanded” and not “debuted” because Ring of Honor has already returned or has announced returns to each of these markets. It should also be noted that Ring of Honor has announced debuts in several other markets as well, and if the trend continues Ring of Honor will be returning to these markets once again after several months.

As it would be when testing a new market, one would want to present a really good card with recognizable names (to bring in the fans) and follow through with great wrestling (to bring back the fans). We all know that’s how most independent wrestling shows are when we determine whether we will go to a show or return for another. What’s great about Ring of Honor is that it is a great mix of both, with more emphasis on the quality of wrestling compared to their television counterparts. Ring of Honor will definitely want to put their best foot forward in St. Louis, just as they have with debuts in the past.

We all know, or at least should, that Full Impact Pro (Ring of Honor’s sister company) is based in Florida and has been running shows since 2003. Many wrestlers that have appeared in Full Impact Pro have also appeared in Ring of Honor. Ring of Honor made their debut in Orlando, Florida in late March with two huge shows: “Supercard of Honor III” and “Dragon Gate Challenge II.” Both of these cards were highlighted with top stars from Ring of Honor taking on popular stars of Japanese promotion Dragon Gate. The fans were already familiar with many of the wrestlers, both from Ring of Honor and Dragon Gate, as many had previously been appearing in Full Impact Pro regularly.

In early May Ring of Honor made their way to Manassas, Virginia for a show titled “Southern Navigation.” While Manassas, Virginia may not be in the South, it is in the general direction compared to where Ring of Honor holds most of their shows. Several months later Ring of Honor tested out Toronto, Ontario and ended up with one of the largest attendance turnouts in Ring of Honor history! This show was titled “Northern Navigation” as it was their first venture into Canada. Could the debut in the St. Louis area be titled “Western Navigation?” It’s a good guess based upon past expansions this year.

The shows in Manassas and Toronto were filled with Ring of Honor’s top stars including: Chris Hero, Delirious, Brian Danielson, Claudio Castagnoli, Austin Aries, Jay & Mark Briscoe, Tyler Black, Jimmy Jacobs, Necro Butcher, Ring of Honor World Champion Nigel McGuinness, and appearances by Pro Wrestling NOAH’s Naomichi Marufuji and Go Shiozaki. Ring of Honor doesn’t let down when it comes to bringing together the best talent on the independent scene and from overseas. Based upon past shows, Ring of Honor’s debut in St. Louis is sure to be explosive!

Tune in next week as I speculate on what Ring of Honor will bring to the fans in St. Louis!

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LWA Localizes Big Name Talent

Posted by Admin on June 9, 2008

LWA localizes big name talent

By Kari Williams
Fans file in to the sports complex, VFW Hall or any other venue where a Lethal Wrestling Alliance (LWA) show will take place, anxiously waiting for the 7:30 bell time. One LWA Superfan and wrestling enthusiast that can be found at the shows is Mike Marnin.

A fan since the age of 10, Marnin has been attending LWA shows for well over a year and has witnessed the presence of mulitple Ring of Honor (ROH) and Total Non-stop Action wrestling (TNA) stars.

“I was at the super card with Alex Shelley, Mike Quackenbush and Davey Richards. I was also there when Austin Aries and Lacey were there. Delirious, MsChif and Daizee Haze. And the show with the Motor City Machine Guns,” Marnin said.

LWA wrestler Pierre Abernathy gives insight on how such stars are booked on an LWA card.

“We just deal with the stars. Through TNA we deal with a guy, but that’s it. All the Ring of Honor guys we’ve brought in, we just deal with them personally,” Abernathy said.

However, much more thought goes into the process of choosing that individual star. Abernathy looks to see who “would be a good fit for [the] product.”

“Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin are really good tag team wrestlers and we had the Submission Squad here who are a really good tag team, so those guys would gel together in the ring. Then you’ve got a bruiser like Samoa Joe wrestling a young, rich guy like Dorian [Victor] who’s in there to beat him up. It’s just more like who is going to fit in really well,” Abernathy said.

The first star to be on an LWA card was Alex Shelley. He appeared on March 17 and waged war against Nick Tyson.

Having wrestled on shows with wrestlers from the ‘big time,’ K.C. Karrington understands the significance of their presence.

“You only get to see them on the internet, youtube [and] all that, or just TV, and actually getting to see them come and work with guys that work in your area…I think it’s great. I mean, it brings the two different worlds together almost,” Karrington said.

After having been in the business for five years, the 20-year-old Karrington feels that any knowledge he can gain from the TNA and ROH wrestlers is time well wasted.

“It gives us as workers a chance to pick their brains, get them to watch what we’re doing in the ring, and get any pointers, just the littlest thing you can get from a big name guy—a guy that’s actually been out on the road, been to the big time, just the smallest thing to a guy that’s working the indies, that’s more important than just about anything you can learn from anybody,” Karrington said.

Fellow LWA wrestler Gary the Barn Owl, who has been wrestling for almost four years, recognizes the importance of the TNA and ROH talent as well.

“Just about everybody we’ve brought in or that come in we learn something from. There’s always a different aspect that we don’t think of because we’re inside the box, and they’re more outside the box,” Gary said.

On the May 3 Mike Johnson Benefit show in House Springs, Mo., Abernathy had the opportunity to face ROH star Delirious.

“He was amazing to wrestle. He teaches you little things you don’t even think about, that he points out, and it makes sense. As far as the company, it just helps elevate the company. He’s just one more guy we’ve brought in who made an impact on a national level that has helped out our company,” Abernathy said.

Karrington has similar thoughts.

“Having actual big names coming in, it brings in the people that you wouldn’t normally see at a show. It introduces them to independent wrestling, and then we get more people supporting the Indies,” Karrington said.

Since attending Yuletide Terror 2006, where Gary defeated Adam Raw to claim his first LWA Championship, Marnin’s favorite big name match was naturally the triple threat, which pitted Evan Gelistico, Mike Quackenbush and Gary against each other, because Quackenbush is his “favorite wrestler of all time.”

Gary can testify to the quality of that match.

“I’d probably say Alex Shelley is probably the most known one. Davey Richards is a really solid worker. I worked Evan [Gelistico] and Mike Quackenbush in a three way, and I thought it was great. Overall, I think the fans accept it. They like it. They like seeing new people come in,” Gary said.

Personally, Marnin would like to see stars like “Bryan Danielson, Christopher Daniels, Claudio Castagnoli and Chris Hero. All of these guys are phenomenal wrestlers and would be great against some of the LWA talent.” However, his first choice would be A.J. Styles.

“He may be a heel but he is one of the best wrestlers in the world,” Marnin said.

Showing his love for the sport, and the LWA specifically, Marnin said, “If there is anyone out there who loves wrestling LWA is the place to be!”

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