Outside the Ropes: FWF Crossfire, Saturday March 24, 2018

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FWF held Crossfire at the Center Lake Pavilion in Warsaw, IN at 7:00pm EST on Saturday March 24, 2018.

First, especially if you have kids, I recommend the Wyndham Garden Hotel on Center Street. We stayed there so I could see this show before we finished our not-quite-direct drive from Valparaiso to Cincinnati. (You know you have the wrestling sickness when you’re willing to spring for a hotel room to see a show.) In particular, the pool area at this hotel is really nice. The down side is they don’t have free breakfast. But Bob Evans is right across the street, and once you decide the wait at Bob Evans is too damn long, you can go down the street to Maria’s, which is better to support since it’s a local establishment anyway.

The FWF venue is super. There’s easy parking and a nice view of the lake as you walk

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in. Look carefully at the lake in this picture (the venue is the building on the left). Do you see Kevin Storm’s head bobbing up and down in the water? No? Well, that’s because this picture was taken about 2 hours before he got thrown in the lake. More on that later! But for now, I’ll just note that Center Lake Pavilion is one of the better spots for wrestling I’ve seen in the northern Indiana territory. And Bell Ringer Ryan Anderson told me the burgers were really good, so I tried one, and he was right! I opened my burger and saw only a burger in a bun, no extras like lettuce or tomato. So I was sad. But I loaded that sucker up with ketchup, mayo, and mustard (yes, all three, stop with your judgments) and it turned out that damn, it was indeed a tasty burger.

In the first match, Unchained Brandon Day took out Jorge Bravo with a powerslam. I’m old and my memory is starting to fade, but I think it was a slam where Day had Bravo hoisted face down over one of this shoulders like a sack of potatoes, then slammed him forward and down such that Day’s weight landed on top of Bravo (as opposed to Day remaining standing and releasing Bravo for the slam). I can’t remember what this particular slam is called. I looked up the Wikipedia page that describes dozens of wrestling throws, but didn’t find this one. I’m sure it’s something simple. Someone please educate me. Edit: ’tis simply the front powerslam? I was seriously overthinking it. The match ended pretty quickly and I didn’t get a picture until the end, so we get to see Day standing victorious over Bravo (below, left).

In the second match, Fireball defeated Drax O’Brien with a roll up. The picture above & right is from this match and you may think Fireball is not in it, but look closely in front of the near ring post for the top of his head! I’m sorry, this is the only picture I took of the match.

Next up, Jacob Brawn, Mark Vandy, and JC Bunyan scrapped. I think this was supposed

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to be a triple threat, but with Brawn and Vandy both representing “The Gingerverse” it was pretty much a two-on-one. Or maybe it was intended to be two-on-one, who knows. To the left we see Vandy holding Bunyan while Brawn leaps down to chop him. Apologies for the bright ring lights reflecting off the pale Gingerverse skins. At one point, Brawn and Vandy took turns giving headbutts to Bunyan and going loopy afterwards, so we’ve learned that JC Bunyan is part Samoan. Mark Vandy ended up getting the win, and afterwards, Vandy and Brawn stood together and implied they’re going after tag team gold!

After the match, Officer Rod Street led out several of his minions and took them to task for failing to do anything about Cletus Farmer even though he’d been tasking SWAT Team members to do just that. (By the way, does the “T” in SWAT stand for Team or Tactical? If the former, then “SWAT Team” becomes one of those redundant phrases like “ATM Machine”. ) Cletus came out and offered to be the “1” in a 2-on-1 match with members of Street’s SWAT team. Street sent in a couple of the goons, and Cletus defeated them. Rod Street looks pissed.

During many matches and this one in particular, a man who wins “Best Dad of the Night” gave his little girl the best seat in the house (below, left), and then afterwards she got to run around the ring with Cletus. Good work, Dad!

Then, JD Smooth defeated the Celtic Nightmare with a sneaky roll up, but not before getting tossed around a bit (above, right).

As hockey announcers like to say, “These two teams don’t like each other!” This is the case between the Midwest Monsters (Tank and Brutus Dylan) and The New School (Noah Walker and Kevin Storm). Their feud came to a head here in a No DQ Warsaw Street Fight. Below, we see Kevin Storm under the can, and Tank going through a door.

During this match, Brutus Dylan grabbed Kevin Storm and asked if the crowd wanted to see him throw Storm into the lake. You know what the answer was, and they went outside; a good portion of the crowd went out through the doors with them. Fortunately, Tank and Walker stayed behind and kept some action going in the ring for those of us who didn’t exit the building. I did not see it, but rumor has it Storm did end up in the lake, and he was not seen again during the night. The Midwest Monsters got the win.

After intermission and clean up time, Rogier Lanier defended his FWF Cruiserweight

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Championship from Ames. Ames started the match on the mic saying he was going to do two things, (1) take Lanier’s title, and (2) kiss him on the lips. He also claimed to be thinking about that BBC, by which I think he meant he was worried about world events and would go watch the news from England after the match. Ames got the win when he pinned Lanier, aided by his feet on the ropes – which the ref did not see. So Ames is now the FWF Cruiserweight Champion, but he only accomplished one of the two things he set out to do.

In tag team action, the Soul Shooters took on Anthony Toatele and Alexander S. Kirk. I don’t know if there’s a story here, but this seems to be a tentative partnership; Kirk tried to make nice with Toatele, but Toatele looked at him like he was selling Amway. During this match, I got to see Ref Russ be more indignant at the Soul Shooters’ shenanigans than he usually gets. Also, Dru Skillz practiced his social skillz and got a group of older ladies to yell at him. The match ended when Kirk was holding one of the Soul Shooters so that Toatele could deliver a flying knee, but you know what happens here: the victim dodged out of the way and Toatele’s knee ended up taking out Kirk instead, and the Soul Shooters got the pin. In the picture below, left, Skillz just took a swift kick from Kirk and is about to flop forwards onto his face. Below right, Remi Wilkins comes off the turnbuckle to give an assist to the powerslam Skillz is giving to Kirk. That spotlight is in a terrible position for the picture. Or rather, I selected a stupid seat if I was going to be taking pictures. (But I like sitting on the aisle!) After the match, the Soul Shooters proclaimed they want a shot at the FWF Tag Team Titles.

In the second to last match, Matt O’Hare took on Lightning Bolt Johnson. FWF

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management decided that it was necessary to have a second ref on hand for this one, outside the ring. In the picture to the left, you know what’s happening, right? LBJ was about to give a big boot to O’Hare. The ref was behind O’Hare, and when O’Hare leaped out of the way, the ref got clobbered instead. Or, that’s usually what happens, but not here! LBJ pulled up on the boot, and saved the ref. But the look of terror on the ref’s face is still perfect. LBJ got the victory in this match.

The main event was a triple threat match for Officer Rod Street‘s FWF Heavyweight Championship; Nick Cutler and Cosmo were the other competitors. Since this was a No-DQ match, Street quickly capitalized and sent in his efficient SWAT Team to attack Cutler and Cosmo. But having recently spent time in the hospital for the birth of his daughter, Cutler picked up some medical tips and attempted to give colonoscopies with one of Street’s little plastic orange cones to almost everyone. Cutler was so absorbed in this process he accidentally gave one to Ref Russ, thinking he was another SWAT member. Having had one of these done recently (the real kind, not the plastic cone kind), I feel for you, Russ.

The match ended in Rod Street’s favor when Sheriff Eva Lonis comes in with a can of Raid and sprayed just about everyone, allowing Street to get a pinfall. And so he retained his title.

The end of the show broke down when two teams of five (one backing new owner Jayson Maples and one backing previous owner JD Smooth, with these teams headed for a showdown soon) converged on the ring for punching and shouting. The Soul Shooters are on JD Smooth’s team and they got some fans so worked up that a few others had to come out from the back to make sure peace was maintained.

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I’ll edit this when I get more details, but the next FWF shows, or at least shows that will have an impact on FWF, are coming up in two weeks (April 7) and at Jayson Maples’ Heroes and Legends X, on Saturday April 21 at the Allen County Memorial Coliseum in Ft. Wayne, IN.

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If you’re so inclined, check out the Northwest Indiana Wrestling Action Program (NWIWRAP) broadcast Sundays at 9:15pm, right after Mostly Metal, which runs Sundays from 8:00-9:15pm CST, on WVLP 103.1FM in Valparaiso, IN. If you’re not in Valpo, catch it streaming on http://www.wvlp.org and the Tune In Radio app. Rebroadcasts happen Wednesdays 10pm – midnight, and NWIWRAP is archived on YouTube, just search for NWIWRAP. You can find @nwiwrap on Twitter. And you can subscribe to the nwiwrap.wvlp@gmail.com Google calendar, where I try to keep up to date calendar postings of shows in and around the NWI region. Because WRESTLING!

Outside the Ropes: ARWPRO, Saturday March 10, 2018

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ARWPRO held a show at American Legion Post 100 in Lake Station, Indiana on Saturday March 10, 2018 at 7:00pm.

Please forgive any errors and lapses in memory, as I’m writing this five days after the show.  My schedule right after the show ended at about 9:30pm Saturday was to go home, get to sleep by 11pm, wake up at 4:15am (and note that clocks changed overnight, so I lost an hour of sleep!  … I know, poor me), and head for the airport for a three day work trip.

Because March 10 was as close as we’d get to St. Patrick’s Day at ARWPRO, ring announcer Greg Hansen took the opportunity to let his Irish loose for a while while King Bishop trailed along hoping get a few of the candies that Greg was handing out.

The show opened with Jack Moody taking on X-Calibur for X-Calibur’s Indiana State Championship.  My advice for Jack Moody is to stop pointing that thing at the audience!  I seem to get pictures quite often of X-Calibur being upside down, and tonight is no different.  Above right you can see him in the middle of a standing moonsault.  This put away Moody and X-Calibur retained his title.

Next we had a few minutes of “King Bishop‘s Corner”,  during which he followed up events from a previous show, where Heavyweight Champ Max Holiday defeated Ivan Manson in a title match, and there seemed to be a bit of respect shown between the two afterwards.  Max Holiday came out with his manager Rat J. Flywheel, and Ivan Manson came out with Family patriarch Charlie Junior.  The discussion turned to some barking against Chazz Moretti and how he had pulled the current tag champs Aggravated Assault away from Rat’s group the Scumbag Army.  The tag champs came out, and the end result of it all was that tonight’s main event would be Max Holiday and Ivan Manson teaming against Aggravated Assault for the tag titles; but, if Max gets pinned, whichever member of Aggravated Assault pinned him would get his Heavyweight Championship, and if Ivan Manson got pinned, he would have to give up his membership in the Family.

Just as we thought KB’s Corner was winding dowm, someone else’s music started, and IMG_20180310_193941-01.jpgout came … Flawless Dave Allen!  KB noted that Allen was not under contract to ARWPRO, and what the heck did he want?  Allen talked about how he was one of the originals of ARW, and it was time to come back and make his mark.  King Bishop offered a match between Allen and Johnny Showtime (of the Picture Show), and if Allen won, he would get a new contract with ARWPRO.

And, Dave Allen did win, so we can expect to see him around a lot more!

Charlie Junior came back out with Rancid Joey Rak and Old School Manson in tow, as the Family was about to take on The Mexecutioners; however, apparently Charlie has the IMG_20180310_200325-01.jpegpower to change the terms of a match on the spot, since he announced it would now be a 3 on 2 match because “The Masked Prospect” needed to audition for membership in the Family.  The picture to the right shows the usual story, where OSM is distracting the ref so that Charlie can get in his licks.  But as familiar as that is, you can also guess how this turned out: the Mexecutioners pinned The Masked Prospect.  Charlie, Rak, and OSM were not impressed, and left ol’ Maskie behind after the match.

 

During intermission, the ring tried to eat a few people, and here you can see one brave soul trying to rescue two people who had already been pulled under. (There was ring repair going on, and it was funny to watch one person crawl under the ring and disappear, then a second, then almost a third.)

The opening match of the second half of the show had The Derby Doll Lane Rosario (with Chazz Moretti) trying to unseat Moxie Mollie as the ARWPRO Women’s Champion.  The picture above shows the Derby Doll waiting to pounce on Moxie Mollie.  However, Moxie retained her title after getting the Derby Doll to tap to an STF-looking thing.

The Dark Horse Nick Cutler and Gregory Glover came out and promised each other good sportsmanship and a nice clean match. (You know how well that’s going to go, right?)  IMG_20180310_210956-01.jpgThere was a lot of banter, stalling, and chants of “Hairy Idiot” directed at Cutler.  Once things finally broke down as predicted, Cutler got himself disqualified with a low blow to Glover.  Then Cutler left the ring to grab the ring bell, and returned to set up a blow to Glover.  Before he got his chance, some familiar music hit and out came the second surprise of the night.  I could hear ol’ JR yelling, “Bah gawd, it’s Drex Odell!”  Drex appeared like he was going to urge on Cutler in attacking Glover, but instead he clobbered Cutler, then went over to assist Glover. It looks like 2018 will be an interesting year for ARWPRO!

The main event had, as advertised earlier, Max Holiday and Ivan Manson against Aggravated Assault in a match that came with a flowchart full of stipulations. IMG_20180310_212541-01.jpeg This picture shows how things went to start, with Aggravated Assault sending the ref over to check on Manson while they teamed up on Max Holiday.  Chazz Moretti is surely standing by saying, “Gentlemen, tsk tsk, this is not good sportsmanship.”

At the end of the cheating and melees, Ivan Manson was pinned – and so due to the stipluations, he must give up his membership in the Family.  And as the Family likes to do, they grieved the loss of one of its members by beating the crap out of him.

The next ARWPRO event is on Saturday March 14, 2018, at Morton High School in Hammond, IN.

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If you’re desperate for something to do, check out the Northwest Indiana Wrestling Action Program (NWIWRAP) broadcast Sundays at 9:15pm, right after Mostly Metal, which runs Sundays from 8:00-9:15pm CST, on WVLP 103.1FM in Valparaiso, IN.  If you’re not in Valpo, catch it streaming on http://www.wvlp.org and the Tune In Radio app.  Rebroadcasts happen Wednesdays 10pm – midnight, and NWIWRAP is archived on YouTube, just search for NWIWRAP.  You can find @nwiwrap on Twitter.  And you can subscribe to the nwiwrap.wvlp@gmail.com Google calendar, where I try to keep up to date calendar postings of shows in and around the NWI region.  Because WRESTLING! 

 

 

Outside the Ropes: ACW March Meltdown, Fri Mar 09 at 7:00pm

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ACME Championship Wrestling held March Meltdown at 7:00pm Friday March 09, 2018 at the Demotte Boxing Club in Demotte, IN.  First, I have to say that the name of the card was a lie, since I got home afterwards and there was still snow on the lawn in between my house and my neighbor’s.

I think the third time will be the charm in terms of my finding the driveway for the Boxing Club in the dark.  The approach is tricky if you haven’t been there before. On my first trip there last month, I simply went right past the turn into the place off of Rt 10.  (And spots to turn around are few and far between on Rt 10, apparently.) Last night, I was alert, my phone told me “your destination is on the right”, and so when I saw the driveway in the dark, I hit the brakes and turned in.  Unfortunately it was the driveway to someone’s house. Sorry, folks. The drive I wanted was the next one, which I saw had a red serial killer van on the roadside with a large sign proclaiming Pro Wrestling Tonight. Next time, I’m going to nail it on the first try!

This was one of the best ACW shows I’ve seen in terms of overall match quality.  The lights were bright and colorful, the sound was clear, and the ropes were tight.  It was a good night for wrestling!

The first match had Crimson Dynamo trying to regain the Tough Man Title from The Luxurious One, Cliff Caviar.  Caviar came out by himself, with his silver spoon, and spoke to the crowd (well, insulted the crowd and his opponent).  He looks so lonely without his usual valet TK Zero on hand, below left. The Tough Man Title comes with no DQ rules and eventually Caviar tried to get a chair involved, but smacked the ringpost rather than Dynamo.  The match ended when TZ Zero eventually came out, interfered, and Caviar was able to hit Dynamo with a chain during the distraction. So Cliff Caviar remains the ACW Tough Man Champion. I’m sure we will not hear the end of it on-line.  

In the second match, Rockstar Jonny Nigh took on Joe Jitsu, who might now be called Jujitso Joe, who knows.  At one point in the match, Rockstar pulled Joe’s mask off – only to reveal a second mask underneath! Joe also knows jujitso of the mind.  Rockstar eventually won the match, and afterwards told the crowd this was only the first step in his new strategy, and we’d see the second step soon.  Hmmmm.

TZ Zero returned to the ring next, for his own match against Arun.  Before concentrating on Arun, TK Zero made sure to argue with people in the front row.  Arun got in some good offense, but TZ Zero controlled most of the match and got the win.  You know, TZ Zero supports Cliff Caviar, but Caviar is nowhere to be seen during TK’s matches.  This is a one sided relationship, and I hope TK Zero thinks about that.

The last match before intermission had Billy the Kid against Dave Allen.  It went back and forth for a while, but Allen got the upper hand and started punishing Billy the Kid with several kicks to the face in the corner (such as the one pictured) and other blows.  Ultimately, the ref stopped the match as Billy was unable to continue. Allen tried to get in a few more blows anyway, but refs got Billy out of the ring. I think the ACW crew needs some proper first aid training, though, for how to get an injured person away from the scene without making things worse!

After intermission, X-Calibur and Jared Kripke took on Austin Fury and Xavier Black in a tag team match with Lucha Libre rules, which Fury and Black won.  After the match, General Manager Michael Allen told the crowd and the guys in the ring that at the next show on April 13, there would be a Fatal Four Way match for Xavier Black’s Intercontinental championship between these four individuals.  Not one to let teamwork get in the way of making a statement, Black attacked Fury from behind and left him laying in the ring.

Next, Kujo took on Bradley Alexander Dawson, who practiced his stroke a couple of times before the match.  In wrestling history, there have been contests marked by the skillful targeting of a body part of one wrestler (such as an arm or leg) by the other.  In this match, Kujo strategically targeted BAD’s nose for exceptional punishment. He slammed BAD’s face into the mat several times, punched it, hit turnbuckles with it, and overall delivered targeted punishment to the schnozz.  This clearly led to Kujo’s victory.

In the main event, Drex Odell successfully defended his ACW Heavyweight Championship (again) from ACW newcomer Superbad Santana Starks.  Starks is well known in other NW Indiana wrestling circles, but I think this was his first appearance at ACW. At one point, Odell missed a moonsault (pictured), but Starks was unable to capitalize.  Later, Odell finished off Starks with a clothesline.

ACW’s next event will be Hebron Havoc 3, at Hebron Middle School, Friday, April 13 at 7:00pm. 

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If you’re desperate for something to do, check out the Northwest Indiana Wrestling Action Program (NWIWRAP) broadcast Sundays at 9:15pm, right after Mostly Metal, which runs Sundays from 8:00-9:15pm CST, on WVLP 103.1FM in Valparaiso, IN.  If you’re not in Valpo, catch it streaming on http://www.wvlp.org and the Tune In Radio app.  Rebroadcasts happen Wednesdays 10pm – midnight, and NWIWRAP is archived on YouTube, just search for NWIWRAP.  You can find @nwiwrap on Twitter.  And you can subscribe to the nwiwrap.wvlp@gmail.com Google calendar, where I try to keep up to date calendar postings of shows in and around the NWI region.  Because WRESTLING!