December 16, 2016
From American Legion Post #308 in Reseda, CA
Excalibur is your host.
The Mystery Vortex show is when nothing is announced in advance (in this case the Title match was announced) and all of the matches are “surprises.”
Trent vs. Candice LeRae
Trent appears timid then rolls outside and paces around. He heads back in and goes for a test-of-strength but LeRae grabs a headlock. Trent gently places LeRae up top but gets rolled up for two so Trent pops up and hits a slam. LeRae slaps Trent after a handshake attempt then hits a headscissors as Trent rolls outside. LeRae flies out with a DDT suicida and sets up for a running kick but Trent catches her and hits an apron powerbomb as the fans chant “one more time,” like they did with LeRae earlier. Back inside, Trent slams LeRae as the crowd boos. Legion Larry shines a light in Trent’s face as he turns around then continues to overpower LeRae. Trent gets cut off the top but comes back with a lariat. He misses a charge and hits the post before spilling outside so LeRae climbs up top and flies out with a plancha. Back inside, LeRae slips out of a fireman’s carry and hits a reverse hurricarana for a nearfall. Trent cuts off LeRae with a big chop so LeRae spits in his face then puts on an octopus hold before switching to the Mrs. Gargano Escape but Trent grabs the ropes. LeRae tries for a ballsplex but Trent blocks that and hits a wheelbarrow suplex. Trent gets booed after firing away in the corner then tries for a top rope splash mountain but LeRae turns that into a hurricarana then hits a ballsplex. Trent is put in the Mrs. Gargano Escape again but Trent breaks out and hits the Crunchy for two then puts her away with the Dudebuster (12:36) **3/4.
Thoughts: Not bad for an opening match with an easy story to follow of Trent not wanting to face Candice then as the match went on did not want to get embarrassed by losing so he started using his strength to his advantage. The crowd was behind Candice here.
ACH vs. Trevor Lee
Lee attacks ACH before the bell. ACH fights back but Lee sends him in the corner and stomps away. ACH takes Lee down and puts on the Muta Lock until Lee reaches the ropes. They trade chops until Lee gets whacked in the nuts then grabs the bottom rope. Lee slingshots the middle rope into ACH’s face then plants him with a STO as that gets two. He tosses ACH outside and follows out and rolls him back inside for a chinlock after teasing something else. ACH slaps Lee but runs into a dropkick then Lee grinds his elbow in ACH’s face. Lee poses to the crowd after tossing ACH and they chant “delete” but ends up running into a kick after that as both men are down. ACH is up first and hits a running discus clothesline in the corner and follows with a German suplex for two. They fight over a suplex and that ends with Lee hitting a Superman elbow. He follows with a running bulldog and a Side Effect but ACH avoids a Twist of Fate then runs wild. He hits Lee with a running soccer kick from the apron then hits a slingshot Ace Crusher for a nearfall. ACH slowly heads up top and jumps over Lee but runs into the Mushroom Stomp as Lee gets two off of that. Lee screams and sets up for another Twist of Fate but ACH breaks that and hits a super kick. Lee rakes ACH across the eyes then hits his own running soccer kick from the apron but runs into another kick. They both end up top where Lee hits a Twist of Fate. Lee heads up top but ACH gets his knees up on a Swanton attempt then ACH hits a stunner and follows with a brainbuster for two. ACH heads back up top and rolls through a 450 splash then slips going back up top where Lee reverses a crossbody and hits a small package driver for the win (14:56) **1/4.
Thoughts: Man, this was disappointing. I don’t know what they were trying to go for her but it did not work. Even the reaction for ACH’s return was minor and the crowd usually gets into that before the match.
Matt Sydal vs. Pete Dunne
Sydal was announced as from the “Osaka Jail” as there were a lot of prison jokes at his expense on commentary. Dunne shoves Sydal down and works the leg. Sydal reverses an armbar but Dunne starts biting his fingers. Sydal snaps off a rana as Dunne was charging then gets the Slice for a nearfall. Sydal stretches out Dunne then applies a single leg crab. Dunne gets out and hits an elbow strike but gets dumped outside but traps Sydal in the ring apron and takes control. Dunne gets two with a draping DDT then grabs Sydal by the nose. Sydal makes motion that he’s smoking a joint and blows it into Dunne’s face and slaps him back but Dunne quickly regains control. Dunne bites Sydal’s foot then starts grabbing his ears and fishhooks him while applying a surfboard. The crowd taunts Dunne with a “Peter” chant as he catches a leg lariat attempt and hits a back suplex. Dunne now targets the shoulder then starts laying into Sydal. Dunne charges and gets caught with a leg lariat as both men are down. Sydal is up first and kicks Dunne a few times then gets two with a standing moonsault. Clothesline gets two. Dunne gets up to avoid a top rope attack and blocks a tornado DDT and hits a suplex. Sydal counters a pumphandle slam in midair with a DDT as both men are down. Sydal goes up top and hits a meteora for two. He grabs his knee then starts laying into Dunne with kicks but Dunne keeps brushing them off and comes back as they trade kicks until Dunne catches him with a tombstone for a nearfall. Dunne stomps Sydal on the head then follows him outside but gets whacked in the face with a kendo stick. Dunne gets his knees up on a shooting star press attempt but Sydal counters a brainbuster with a rana. Dunne then knocks Sydal down in midair and gets two with a pumphandle drop as he almost goes after the referee for a slow count. Sydal comes back with a reverse hurricarana but Dunne cuts him off of the top rope. They fight up top where Sydal takes him down with a reverse hurricarana then sets up for the shooting star press and gets the win (17:23) ***.
Thoughts: The crowd was dead but I thought this was a good match. Sydal’s high-flying still looks crisp and Dunne plays a great heel in the ring.
Death by Elbow vs. reDRagon
Dunn and Fish start off the match and mix it up on the mat for a bit. Dunn comes back with an elbow strike as Fish takes a breather outside and tells a fan who is giving him shit to “shut the fuck up.” Fish comes back with a kick inside the ring then hits an arm drag before tagging out. Hero checks on Dunn, then circles around before tagging Hero as the crowd gives it a standing ovation as they chant for Hero to fuck up O’Reilly. O’Reilly bounces off of Hero a few times then they trade kicks to the face and end up in opposing corners. O’Reilly works a cross armbreaker but Hero reaches the ropes. reDRagon double-teams Hero for a bit as they cut off the ring. Dunn breaks up a guillotine then the match breaks down a bit. Hero tags out as Dunn covers Fish for a two count. Dunn kicks O’Reilly outside then beats on Fish. Hero tags and hits an assisted senton before slapping O’Reilly off of the apron. The fans want Hero to dive outside but he slides out instead and drops Fish with a right hand. The action goes back inside where Death by Elbow continue to beat down Fish. Hero gets surprised with a suplex from Fish but Dunn tags in and knocks O’Reilly off of the apron to prevent the tag. Fish catches Dunn with a Samoan drop then makes the tag as O’Reilly runs wild. He hits a back suplex then immediately puts Dunn in a knee bar as he is in control of the match. Dunn rolls through a German suplex and follows with a rolling Ace Crusher before tagging out. Hero beats on O’Reilly but Fish makes a blind tag as they both kick down Hero. Dunn runs in and Fish ends up tossing him into Hero with an exploder. Fish covers Hero for two then cuts of Dunn up top and tries an exploder but Hero cuts Fish off and takes him down for a rolling elbow/double stomp as that gets two. O’Reilly is in and fires away as everyone is now trading strikes but the crowd is not caring as this match is dragging. Everyone is down as the crowd gets into it a little bit then O’Reilly officially tags in to be the legal man as they hit Dunn with a backbreaker/knee smash combo for a nearfall. Hero comes in to knock Fish down then hits O’Reilly with an elbow as Dunn was hitting a brainbuster and that gets two. Death by Elbow take control as Fish gets tossed outside right in front of Dave Meltzer. O’Reilly almost puts Hero away with a victory roll but Hero comes back with a piledriver then tries for a Gotch piledriver but O’Reilly uses a hanging guillotine. Fish prevents Dunn from breaking it up as he uses a sleeper. reDRagon almost puts Hero away with the Chasing the Dragon then O’Reilly makes him submit to a cross armbreaker (27:07) **1/2.
Thoughts: This was way too long. The crowd was into Hero when he first tagged in then did not seem to care about the rest of the match. Once again, Dunn struggled in a PWG ring as he had a rough night. The other three looked good for what they did but this would have benefited from being a fifteen minute match rather than close to a half-hour. This was Hero’s final match in PWG before heading back to the WWE.
PWG Title #1 Contender’s Match: Chuck Taylor vs. Adam Cole
Cole gets pissed at the ring announcer (Excalibur) for calling him fat then heads over to the booth but Taylor attacks him. Exaclibur then plays with Cole’s stomach before hitting him then Taylor flies off the stage with a tope con hilo. The bell rings as they are both in the ring. Cole plays possum and charges after Taylor but runs into a boot. Cole attacks Taylor outside and dumps him into the crowd. Back inside, Cole takes off his shirt as Excalibur makes fat jokes then Cole whips Taylor into the corner. Cole hits a bicycle kick then gets a nearfall with the Last Shot. Cole mocks Taylor then uses a chinlock. Taylor escapes from a fireman’s carry and hits a DDT as both men are down. Taylor then hits another DDT and sets up for a thrid but gets backed into the corner. Taylor catches Cole with a knee smash and does hit another DDT for a nearfall. Taylor hits the Sole Food but Cole comes back with a super kick. Taylor hits a Falcon Arrow for two. He comes off the top but Cole catches him with a super kick for two. He hits a suplex then a Shining Wizard before taunting the crowd while perched on the top rope as that allows Taylor to take him off then hit the Awful Waffle for a nearfall. Cole comes back with a straight-jacket German suplex for two then hits the Panama Sunrise and uses a cocky cover but Taylor kicks out. Cole then loosens his drawstrings then taunts Taylor to suck his dick but Taylor bites him then uses the Awful Waffle for the win (10:02) **1/2. The crowd popped huge for this surprise.
Thoughts: Not a technical masterpiece by any means and you can say its too goofy to be considered a #1 contender match but this was entertaining and both guys were engaging. The crowd was into this more than anything else on the show too. Taylor also has an undefeated streak dating back to 2014 when he lost to Johnny Gargano in the first round of that year’s Battle of Los Angeles as he rides that to his title match on the next show. There were a lot of fat jokes at Cole’s expense on commentary.
Young Bucks vs. Jeff Cobb & Matt Riddle
Riddle takes down Nick to start then starts laying into him with kicks. Riddle puts on a cross armbreaker as Nick gets into the ropes. Matt and Cobb tag into the match as Cobb grounds Matt then tosses around both of the Young Bucks. Cobb stays in control but the Bucks fight back and fly out with stereo topes. Matt hits Riddle with an apron powerbomb then they both pick up Cobb and nearly drop him but do manage to get another apron powerbomb. Back inside, the Bucks work over Riddle. Matt pulls Cobb off of the apron then teases Riddle to tag him in as that allows Nick to slingshot in with a facebuster for two. Riddle comes back with a Pele kick then tags Cobb, who runs wild. The match breaks down as the Bucks hit double super kicks. Cobb breaks up a pin attempt after a senton atomico but gets low-bridged as Nick flies out with a moonsault. Riddle takes Nick off of the apron with a springboard knee smash then hits Matt with a knee smash. Matt rolls through a Bro to Sleep and gets his knees up on a senton but Cobb clotheslines both Bucks as Riddle puts Matt in the Bro to Sleep until Nick breaks that up. The Bucks take over and start hitting kicks but Cobb & Riddle grab their legs and work stereo ankle locks. Nick distracts the ref as Matt kicks Riddle low then blows a kiss at Meltzer to set up for the Meltzer Driver but Riddle breaks up and Cobb suplexes the Bucks at the same time. Riddle then hits Nick with the Bro to Sleep and Cobb hits the Tour of the Islands for the win as Matt could not break up the pin in time (18:27) ***1/2.
Thoughts: Fun match with a good finish. I will say this was the only time I’ve seen Riddle where he did come off like a mega star. He was just “there” but everything he did still looked good. Its weird not seeing the crowd get behind him now but this was a dead crowd for the most part. The finish makes Cobb & Riddle contenders for the Tag Team Titles now.
PWG Title Match: Marty Scurll vs. Zack Sabre Jr. (c)
Scurll gets this title shot for winning the 2016 Battle of Los Angeles Tournament, which Sabre won in 2015. Chuck Taylor joins on commentary. This starts off on the mat as neither man can gain an advantage. They end up in a stalemate after a nifty sequence then Scurll hits a suplex and works a surfboard. He eggs on Sabre to hit him and ends up getting decked with an uppercut. Scrull snaps Sabre’s arm then goes to work on that for a bit. Scurll uses the Romero Special now and rolls Sabre around. He gauges and uses a boot rake then goes back to attacking the arm as Sabre is in trouble. Scurll hits a superplex then stomps a mudhole in the corner. He cuts off a comeback then hits a super kick from the apron. They head back inside where Scurll sets up for the chicken wing but Sabre turns around and hits an uppercut then slides behind and puts on an octopus hold. Scurll heads over to the ropes as Sabre knocks him down. Sabre hits a Dragon suplex for then works a behind-the-back Dragon sleeper and switches to a crucifix for a nearfall. Scurll fights back and boots Sabre in the arm then reverses a cross armbreaker with a cradle for two in another great sequence. Sabre uses a bridging jackknife but Scurll turns that into a chicken wing. Sabre is able to reach the ropes with his foot then trades strikes with Scurll into he gets faked out with a low super kick. Sabre comes back with a half nelson suplex but Scurll comes back with a brainbuster as both men are down. Sabre comes back with a Liger Bomb and tries for a stretch but Scurll turns that into a cradle for a nearfall. Sabre hits a suplex then gets two with a Penalty Kick. They slowly trade uppercuts until Sabre goes nuts and boots Scurll in the face. He works another octopus hold but Scurll reverses and hits a release tombstone as both men are down. Scurll puts on the cross armbreaker and breaks the fingers while kicking Scurll in the face. Sabre takes him down for a cradle as that gets two. Sabre backs Scurll into the corner and they hit the ref then Scurll ducks as Sabre drills the ref with a roundhouse kick. Scurll hits an inside-out butterfly suplex and covers but the ref is out. Scurll grabs the umbrella and holds it up but has second thoughts and starts looking around before dropping it to the mat. Scurll heads out back and comes out with the belt and tries to hit him but Sabre charges and hits an uppercut. Sabre picks up the belt but another referee comes out and takes the belt. Scurll then tosses powder in Sabre’s face and covers for two as that second ref made the count. Scurll walks into the triangle hold and cannot break out as Sabre maintains the hold. Scurll tries to grab the umbrella but fails then Sabre cranks back the hold as Scrull has no choice but to tap (37:23) ****. After the match, Scurll takes the belt then gives it to Sabre and raises his hand. Taylor is in the ring and they shake hands to hype up their title match.
Thoughts: Excellent match. A bit similar in their match at RevPro from January but the end was different and they had some good storytelling. They played up Scurll & Sabre’s former friendship and Scurll refrained from hitting Sabre with the umbrella then put the belt on Sabre’s shoulder after the match and raised his hand as it appears they’ve settled their differences. The match itself was tremendously paced but again, the crowd was largely quiet and it affected it a little bit. Sabre retains and they set up his rematch against Taylor at the next show.
Final Thoughts: If not for the last two matches, this would have been one of the worst PWG shows I’ve seen in quite some time. The crowd, which is what helps make PWG unique, was anything but that tonight and it affected the show. The last two matches were good but the rest was mostly disappointing. Overall, a thumbs in the middle show for me.
Here is my schedule for the next several days:
Thursday: Kayfabe Commentaries Timeline Series: 1994 ECW as told by Shane Douglas
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 10/1/89
Sunday: Mid-South Wrestling 7/15/82
Sunday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 10/7/89
Monday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 10/8/89
Tuesday: WWF Toronto Maple Leaf Gardens 10/8/89
Wednesday: WWN Style Battle Season One, Episode Two