WrestleCon Mark Hitchcock Memorial Supershow
April 4 2019
Hi, it’s midnight. I’m bang on schedule. This is my sixth show today. In typical Indie fashion it is late starting. Come on guys, it’s a tight schedule on these Mania weekends. Hosts are Kevin Kelly and Excalibur. We open with Roadwarrior Animal because apparently we’re waiting for an ambulance or we can’t start the show. So they send Ric Flair out to cry for ten minutes.
Eddie Kingston vs. Masato Tanaka
Tanaka is in town for Mania and to bash Eddie’s face in. Kingston does a fantastic job here of making us believe that Tanaka hits harder than any motherfucker he’s ever fought before. Tanaka wrestles on the edge and his superplex is one of the scariest I’ve seen in some time as Kingston barely rotates over. This is a war with both guys throwing bombs and barely selling. Kingston gets clocked with Sliding D and that’ll do it.
Final Rating: ***1/4
Pentagon Jr vs. Rey Fenix
This was supposed to be Lucha Bros vs. someone but the coward puto Young Bucks aren’t here for the Lucha Bros fight each other. Fenix’s double springboard moonsault to the floor is fucking incredible. I love his work. The counting overhand chops being ended by a fucking roundhouse is my shit. As is the top rope walk PK. Fenix is the fucking don. The brothers stiff the shit out of each other. I love it. They run through just about every spot going until the Spanish Fly finishes for Fenix. This was a fantastic sprint with endless big bombs.
Final Rating: ***3/4
Puma King, Samantha Heights, DJ Z & Yoshihiro Tajiri vs. Sammy Guevara, LAX & Diamante
What are these teams? Specifically what is the first team?
Like really, what? You’ll be pleased to learn the action is fast, wild and wacky too. Guevara and DJ Z are particularly entertaining. The match basically revolves around them, which is weird because Guevara is the only guy on his team not in LAX. Puma King is the sloppiest guy in the match but everyone launches themselves full speed into his spots anyway because it’s the WrestleCon Supershow baby! Tajiri does very little but mists Ortiz in mid-air and Buzzsaw Kicks him for the pin. This was great. I love a wacky tag team partners random clash.
Final Rating: ***1/4
Arez vs. Flamita vs. Robbie Eagles
These are three very small, very fast, men eager to show off. And show off they do! Arez does an incredible double spot where he hits a move in the ring and rolls right into a tope. He doesn’t even look. Then the match goes to hell because Arez attempts a Spanish Fly off Flamita’s back on Eagles and both guys almost die. Stop Doing Spanish Flies. For Fuck’s Sake. They look stupid and people keep landing on their heads doing them. Just stop it. Flamita isn’t content with the safety of doing anything in the ring and hits a couple of crazy dives. Arez has a bridge and Eagles hits him with a 450 Splash for the win. This match was nuts. It lived on the raw edge and freaked me out more than once.
Final Rating: ***
The Revolt (Caleb Konley, Jake Manning & Zane Reilly) vs. Hurricane Helms, X-Pac & Jushin Liger
Liger is retiring this year so this is his last Mania weekend.
He runs through the hits on Konley. This is very much a nostalgia showing and Helms busting out the Three Count dance is nothing short of incredible. Liger is howling on the apron.
This drags through a lengthy control period before Liger belts Manning with a shotei. Pac gets the Broncobuster and Helms chokeslams Konley. Brainbuster on Man Scout finishes. They could have cut this in half and made it more palatable however when the match worked, with the nostalgia kicks, it was so much fun. Jushin Liger has had one of the all-time great careers. An innovator and super junior the likes of which we may never see again.
Final Rating: **1/2
Intermission: Intermissions at 2am should be illegal. Especially when you start 30 minutes late because you don’t have an ambulance on site. Anyway, I waited and there was no stream so I went to bed. So the next match is…JIP! Man, it’s been a long time since I typed those three initials.
Barbaro Cavernario vs. Dragon Lee
As I join we are not selling for shit. I almost immediately see a flipping DDT and a Canadian Destroyer, which are both utterly no sold before they do the double down. That Fighting Spirit business only works in certain scenarios. I buy a Fighting Spirit lariat for example as it’s a desperation swing but a Fighting Spirit Canadian Destroyer? Come on. Plus they go right into the foot stomp spot in the corner that I hate. Sure Penta and Fenix did the same spot but at least the set up made sense. Falcon Arrow finishes for Dragon Lee.
Final Rating: NR (will need a rewatch)
Zack Sabre Jr vs. Shane Strickland
This is one of the last Strickland appearances before he heads to WWE. Which is unfortunate because this isn’t a crowd that will sing his entrance music.
Well, they do but a little bit as opposed to Wolves where they literally sing the entire thing. The mat stuff in this is really good. Shock huh? Sabre takes particular offence at the crowd being so supportive of Shane in one of his last Indie dates. Shane is a rarity. Instead of using his strength advantage to throw Zack around he grounds Sabre and prevents the counters with his weight. I’ve not seen anyone get that much joy from Sabre on the mat in a long, long time. It’s testament to Strickland that he has the tools to control a match against a technical genius. While Shane is very successful, compared to everyone else, Zack eventually finds a way to take him apart. I think they’ve botched something when Shane goes for a rolling ace crusher and starts falling without Zack’s head but it’s a counter into an armbar! The match isn’t all technical stuff and when they get into the striking it is a meaty contest too. Zack ends up tying Strickland in knots in a sensational counter and Shane has to verbally submit. “I’m the best wrestler in the world dickheads”. When this was firing on all cylinders it was incredible. Unfortunately it was a wee bit sluggish to get going.
Final Rating: ***3/4
SoCal Uncensored vs. Orange Cassidy & The Best Friends
Orange Cassidy is mad over. He seems to have found this formula for success. Be a great character first and then showcase the hidden skills when required. He can get away with doing quarter speed wrestling with his hands in his pockets the bulk of the time as long as, when he needs to, he breaks out the real stuff.
Which means he’s going out there and doing 90% shtick and he’s more over than anyone else. It might have taken a while to catch on but he now looks like the smartest man in the room. The craziness is contagious and the Best Friends really love Scott Hall. There’s so much denim in this match. “Orange Cassidy never gets blown up” says Kevin Kelly as I chuckle at him doing a slow motion clothesline in the corner. Daniels ends up in sunglasses and they beat each other in slow motion. The camera cuts between “chops” are fantastic. Big respect to the director for those.
For some bizarre reason they feel the need to job Orange Cassidy out here after he’s been the highlight of the match and the Best Meltzer Ever finishes. Maybe SCU can’t job under their AEW contracts. This was a lot of fun but I’m glad I didn’t watch it live.
Final Rating: ***
Bandido vs. Will Ospreay
This feels like a big deal, just because it’s Ospreay. Which is a big compliment to him. He’s a ticket shifter on his own. WrestleCon just throwing him in with another flier he’d never faced. Ospreay’s first three moves are all fucking insane. It’s the definition of coming out of the gate fast. The match settles into a slow rhythm but occasionally it bursts into life. Ospreay’s handspring spin kick is insane. Will seems to get a bit pissy with the crowd, who are basically dead because it’s Mania weekend and it always happens.
I like that Ospreay thinks he’s a big old strong style badass now and baits Bandido into a strike duel with the confidence he’ll win. They have some insane counters in this match. Where one or both of them change difference in mid air to land into a move that I had no idea was coming. Ospreay is the master of this but Bandido keeps up with him every inch of the way. The difficulty level here is insanely high and it’s choreographed to the nines but that doesn’t make it any less good. Stormbreaker finishes an excellent main event.
Final Rating: ****1/2
The live feed had some pretty major issues. It started late. It had a lengthy intermission and went nearly four hours. However the show was consistently good and the main event is great. I’ll be interested to see if Barbero/Lee is any good as it comes recommended but that will have to wait until a full version is up.