WWN Supershow Mercury Rising 2017 – PROGRESS vs. EVOLVE

WWN Supershow Mercury Rising 2017 – PROGRESS vs. EVOLVE

Show Date: 2/4/17

This is the last major WWN show of the weekend and is built around an EVOLVE vs. PROGRESS series, as well as crowning the first ever WWN champion. Most of the WWN shows have been a lot of fun this weekend and the Supershow is normally great so I am very excited for this.

The show starts with Drew Galloway coming down to the ring to cut the same promo he has done all weekend, taking credit for all of the success of WWN and is trying to save them. Look, I love Drew but this show is going up against Takeover and I don’t want to be watching a damn promo. Riddle comes out to attack him but gets hit with a piledriver.

After that Keith Lee comes down, to whom Galloway offers an alliance. Lee destroys Drew for his troubles. So that’s two guys taken out before the big multiman match later tonight. Lee gets on the mic and tells the crowd to bask in his glory, I really think Keith is the breakout guy of this weekend and I am super excited for his future.

Keith Lee vs. Jason Kincaid vs. Austin Theory vs. A Gatekeeper

 The fourth spot was originally supposed to be Timothy Thatcher, but Stokley Hathaway came out and said that he was out of the match. This caused Darby Allin to come out and try to enter the match, only to get attacked by Ethan Page and I just want a match to happen please.

This was a fine four way, nothing memorable. Keith Lee has had an amazing weekend and putting him in this kind of a match feels like a complete waste, but he had a good showing against the Gatekeeper. Keith Lee pin Gatekeeper ***

After the match Lee gets on the mic and talks about Kyle O’Reilly, the match between those two could be exceptional.

 LuFisto (c) vs. Toni Storm (SHINE Championship)

Part of the fun of these Supershows is that we get stuff from the rest of the WWN universe, with this being the perfect example. The angle to set up the original match with Su Yung’s Red Wedding was exceptional and has me very excited for this match, unfortunately LuFisto tells us that Su isn’t here which causes Toni to come out from the crowd and we get this match instead.

Things took a little while to get going, but then developed into a decent back and forth with LuFisto dominating. For a last minute match change this was pretty good, even if I am let down at the lack of Su Yung. LuFisto pins Toni Storm *** ¼

Jim Smallman is out next with Lenny Leonard to introduce the EVOLVE vs PROGRESS series. Jim cuts his PROGRESS opening promo, which I am very happy about since I didn’t get to see the PROGRESS show this weekend.

Ethan Page (w/A Gatekeeper) vs. Jimmy Havoc (PROGRESS vs. EVOLVE Series Match #1)

It’s such a trip to see Jimmy Havoc in Orlando against my close personal friend Ethan Page, but here we are.

I hate crowd brawling. It’s rarely filmed well and never comes across well on tape, and this match started with a lot of that which killed the crowd dead. Not that they were that hot to begin with. Things didn’t really improve after they got back in the ring, and Ethan eventually gets the win after the second Gatekeeper distracts Jimmy. Page pins Havoc ** ½

After the match Ethan gets on the mic and says that he is going to end the PROGRESS and EVOLVE relationship once and for all and goes to attack Jimmy, only for Darby Allin to come out and back the save. What a fucking great pairing those two could be.

South Pacific Power Trip (TK Cooper and Travis Banks w/Dahlia Black) vs. Catch Point (Jaka and Chris Dickinson)(PROGRESS vs. EVOLVE Series Match #2)

The worst thing about the PROGRESS showing not working properly this weekend is that I missed the US debut of the SPPT, but the pop they got at the start of this match more than made up for it.

I haven’t seen a huge amount of Jaka and Dickinson, but they beat the crap out of TK which was glorious to watch. Once things moved away from formula, this got really good with some crazy double team offence and an insane one count kick out from Dickinson. The rate at which SPPT have improved over the last few months is insane and I will be so upset when they leave the UK. This is the match of the weekend for me. TK Cooper pins Chris Dickinson **** ½

We are told that Drew Galloway is out of the main event. As I am writing this he was just in the crowd of NXT Takeover so that will be something.

Pete Dunne (c) vs. ACH (PROGRESS World Championship, PROGRESS vs. EVOLVE Series Match #3)

These two had a match for RevPro early last year back when Pete was first starting out the Bruiserweight gimmick, but they have both improved vastly since then.

This was a pretty good match but it struggled to really hook me and break out as a great match. That might partly because it had to follow the great tag match, or because it didn’t have the heat that Dunne title matches normally get. The match had a slow build, with Dunne grinding down the highflyer as he is want to do, and the finishing stretch was fun but it could have been so much more. I do like Pete using the Regal-Stretch now. Peter submits ACH to retain *** ¾

Zack Sabre Jr (c) vs. Mark Haskins (EVOLVE Championship, PROGRESS vs. EVOLVE Series Match #4)

This was like Zack’s tenth match this weekend. This was a very good, different kind of world title match. It almost felt like something from a different era with interesting, simple offence, a lot of matwork, and some great cut offs by both men. We got some really great stiff exchanges as well and some lovely firing up sequences. Not at all what I expected out of this match but a real pleasure to watch. Zack submits Haskins ****

After the match Zack gets on the mic and cuts a little promo about being proud of British Wrestling, and ends with his usual bit about this world being for everyone and pro wrestling being for everyone.

Timothy Thatcher (w/Stokely Hathaway) vs. Parrow (w/Drennen) vs. Jon Davis vs. Matt Riddle vs. Fred Yehi vs. Tracy Williams (Elimination, WWN Championship)

So this match is a lot less interesting with the Drew Galloway news. Thatcher eliminates Parrow fairly early on after all five men team up against him. After a fair amount of fairly lifeless wrestling Catch Point eliminate Timothy Thatcher as well as Jon Davies. The tag champs then worked over Riddle for a while until Williams rolls up Yehi.

The final section of this match was pretty good, with some clever psychology from Williams who worked over Riddle’s injured neck including a piledriver in a call back from earlier this weekend. While this was good stuff, I feel like it went too long without anything really great happening and a finish that came completely out of nowhere. Riddle submits Williams ***

After the match Riddle gets on the mic and says that he will defend the title all over the world as well as every WWN promotion. I really like the idea of Riddle as a travelling, fighting champion.

Overall: 5.5

During this show there was a lot of discussion on twitter about how much the card changed than what was advertised, with not only the Galloway stuff but also Su Yung as well as the opener. While I completely understand the criticism, especially during Wrestlemania Weekend when there is so much competition and money being spent, I don’t believe the overall quality of the show was hurt by the changes. What I do agree with is the criticisms of WWN for not completely removing Drew from the show beforehand or pretending that he was injured and not seen in the crowd of NXT already, that is just bush league stuff and makes you look like total carnies.

As far as the show itself goes, while it wasn’t blow away great and probably won’t be the best offering of the day we did get several really great matches and you can’t ask for much more.

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