EVOLVE 89

July 9, 2017

From the Marietta Event Center in Marietta, GA

Lenny Leonard is your host

 

Leonard lets the crowd know that Anthony Henry & James Drake won the EVOLVE Tag Team Titles last night and have an open contract to wrestle tonight. However, Darby Allin runs out and takes the mic, demanding that Timothy Thatcher comes out and faces him now.

 

Darby Allin vs. Timothy Thatcher w/ Stokely Hathaway

Allin tries for a single leg takedown but Thatcher blocks that and shoves Allin into the ropes. Thatcher lays into Allin in the corner then catches Allin with a rear naked choke after he tried a springboard coffin drop. Thatcher drops Allin and leaves as he thinks the match is over but the ref tells him Allin never gave up. Allin ends up flying outside to take down Thatcher and starts hammering away. Thatcher charges but hits the post but is eventually able to toss Alin down. He rolls inside where comes off of the top with a headbutt and tries it again but Thatcher cuts him off with an uppercut. Thatcher starts to ragdoll Allin then toys around with him before using a rear chinlock. Allin breaks up the hold with a jawbreaker but Thatcher takes him down with a belly-to-belly before putting on another sleeper but Allin reaches the ropes. Allin lands on his feet after a German suplex attempt then hits a chop block. He does that a few more times and almost puts Thatcher away with a Code Red. Allin hits a coffin drop on the back of Thatcher then rolls him over but that only gets two. Both men get up slowly and stare each other down as Allin slaps Thatcher across the face. Thatcher goes nuts and puts on a choke then starts beating the piss out of Allin. He goes after Allin’s injured arm in an incredibly vicious manner then uses a pinning combination but the ref said Allin’s shoulder was up and stayed on the mat for a bit longer until the ref finally counted to three (8:27) **3/4.

Thoughts: I thought this was fine but it appeared the referee messed up the finish and as a result the end of the match lost a lot of effectiveness, Anyway, Allin had a good showing and Thatcher has been more enjoyable since aligning with Hathaway.

 

Page runs out and puts on a pair of black shorts similar to ACH’s and starts mimicking him. ACH gets the mic but it takes a while to work. He sarcastically says its nice to be respected in EVOLVE. He then says Page is his only friend in wrestling but was upset to learn they are in the second match. Page then takes the mic and says he saw ACH’s promo yesterday and it was really bad and since he is apparently not a really good wrestler, he suggests they help each other out then become the greatest wrestlers ever, leave EVOLVE because everyone hates them, then come back and charge double the amount. ACH agrees and the two shake hands. ACH then proceeds to cut a promo similar to what Ricochet did at the G1 USA Special but Page cuts him off and says only The Rock, not the “Future of Flight” can get away with that. Page then tells ACH to teach him how to wrestle and give the people “******1/2” as Leonard calls them out for acting like petulant children.

 

ACH vs. Ethan Page

They trade arm wringers until Page tries a kip up and gets it on the third attempt. They end in a stalemate after dodging kicks as the crowd chants “this is awesome” then ACH tells them what they are going to do next. ACH does a bunch of standing backflips then lands similarly as Ricocchet as Page throws in some crumpled dollar bills and leads the crowd in a “This is Awesome” chant. They keep talking about what they are going to do then ACH hits a knee smash and heads up top only to get down and yell out “chocolate rainmaker” as they work a rainmaker reversal sequence with both men collapsing. They start trading forearm smashes now and do so for a while until they both end up down in the corner. The crowd chants “six stars” then they miss bicycle kicks before trading strikes. Page blocks an “American Destroyer” then brags about being the smartest man on earth until ACH rolls him up for the win (7:56) **1/2. After the match, both men hug then set down on the mat and bump fists, with ACH telling the crowd to make this a GIF. ACH gives a fake speech about the sacrifices he has made and acts pretentious before Page gives ACH the money then bows down. ACH poses then wipes his tears away with the money.

Thoughts: This was something else. It was a parody of a modern “big” Indy match and they managed to make it entertaining. Plus, it goes with the storyline of both guys feeling screwed over by the company so they went out and dicked around instead of having a match. Leonard’s disgust on commentary was tremendous too. This will not be everyone’s cup of tea but it was different.

 

Jon Davis vs. Jason Kincaid

Davis overpowers Kincaid to start. Kincaid comes back with a headscissors takedown and works that on the mat for a bit. Kincaid dodges a few attacks then lands a double stomp. He follows with a springboard blockbuster for a two count then tries a springboard hurricarana that is blocked and they work a reversal sequence ending with Davis hitting a chokeslam. Kincaid rolls outside then Davis rolls out and hits a few chops. Back inside, Davis covers for just a one count then blocks a kick and picks up Kincaid for a capture suplex that gets two. Davis chops down Kincaid and beats on him for a bit but Kincaid fights back. Kincaid hits a double stomp on the apron then slingshots in with a neckbreaker for a nearfall. Davis blocks a Shiranui then Davis backbreaker/uranage combo for a two count. Kincaid comes back with a swinging DDT then a falcon arrow but that only gets two. Kincaid climbs up top now then stands on the post but rolls through a double stomp where Davis nails him with an elbow smash. Davis tosses Kincaid around and nearly puts him away with a Chaos Theory but Kincaid counters a Three Seconds Around the World attempt with a headscissors and follows with a sunset flip into the turnbuckle. Davis rolls outside to avoid a coast-to-coast dropkick but Kincaid hits it as he dropkicks Davis through the ropes. Davis cuts Kincaid off of the top rope with an enziguiri before heading up but Kincaid escapes then hits a stunner out of the corner before standing on the post and connecting with the double stomp as that gets the win (15:31) ***1/4.

Thoughts: Kincaid gets another win as he beats a veteran in Davis. It started off a bit slow but got going near the end. I think Davis is a solid power wrestler and would not mind to see more of him in EVOLVE. Kincaid’s win gives in a mini winning streak now as his storyline of blowing up after losing has temporarily been put on hold.

 

“Hot Sauce” Tracy Williams w/ Stokely Hathaway vs. Keith Lee

Williams gets in Lee’s face then Lee smirks into the camera before landing an elbow smash. Williams slugs away but Lee knocks him back down. Lee continues to beat on Williams against the ropes then tells the crowd to bask in his glory as Williams is on the mat. Lee stays in control then as Williams puts on a hanging cross armbreaker he carries him back inside and knocks him down. Williams takes Lee off of the top and follows with a missile dropkick but Lee gets right back up. Williams finally takes Lee off of his knee and covers but only gets a one count. Lee regains control and drops an elbow for a two count as Hathaway gets behind his client. Williams stuns Lee with a dropkick then chops him against the ropes. Lee slams Williams down and looks pissed before saying he is “limitless” but misses a charge as Williams hammers away. Williams shoves the ref out of the way then the ref admonishes both men for not breaking in a timely manner then accidentally sandwich the ref trying to go after each other. Lee knocks Williams outside where the two brawl then the locker room empties to separate the two but they still go after each other. The ref is still out then Lee gets inside of the ring as Williams is being held back so Lee flies out onto everyone with a tope con hilo, nearly whacking his head off of the apron in the process. Thatcher then stares down Lee and goes after him as the two brawl all over the place then to the back with Hathaway as the match is apparently over (9:50) **1/2.

Thoughts: Disappointing if you were expecting a long competitive match but it was fine storyline wise. Both guys are getting pushed so a non-finish makes sense and they built up to a Thatcher vs. Lee match too as well as another Williams vs. Lee match down the line with bigger stakes on the line.

 

As Lee head back with Thatcher, Chris Dickinson & Jaka get into the faces of Anthony Henry & James Drake, the men who beat them for the EVOLVE Tag Team Titles last night. Hathaway tells the new champs he is cashing in on their rematch as Dickinson calls them “jabronis” who won on a fluke. However, music plays as the The Ugly Ducklings come out. Coach Mikey comes out with a crumpled piece of paper that is the open contract for tonight’s title match. Hathaway takes a look then Jaka says its a three way as they attack the Ducklings.

 

EVOLVE Tag Team Title Match: Chris Dickinson & Jaka vs. Anthony Henry & James Drake (c) vs. The Ugly Ducklings w/ Coach Mikey

The Ugly Ducklings are Rob Killjoy & Lance Lude. Everyone brawls to start off. Henry fights off an apron powerbomb then a sunset bomb then Dickinson takes everyone down with a springboard plancha. Back inside, Dickinson & Jaka beat on Killjoy. Lude tries to fight off both men but Jaka knocks him down. Everyone trades moves with Henry almost getting the win with a Canadian Destroyer. The Ducklings are both hanging in a tree-of-woe where Henry hits a double stomp then Drake hits a coast-to-coast dropkick. Henry then hits Killjoy with a frog splash but Dickinson makes the save with a deadlift wheelbarrow suplex. Dickinson & Jaka take control briefly but Henry breaks up a pin attempt with a double stomp then dives out with a plancha as Drake his Lude with a moonsault for the win (8:06) ***. After the match, Dickinson & Jaka destroy the Ducklings on the floor then yell at the champs as Dickinson tosses in a few chairs. Dickinson then seats Killjoy and kicks the piss out of him before finally leaving as Hathaway tells the champs they are on borrowed time.

Thoughts: All-action and entertaining. The crowd was super into this, especially with two local teams. The finish looked great as the surprising championship team of Drake & Henry have been a pleasant surprise this weekend.

 

Austin Theory & Priscilla Kelly head to the ring. Priscilla tells the crowd, filled with Austin’s family and friends, that Austin was weak and gullible then but now he is with her and will no longer be stuck here as a failure like everyone else in the building. Priscilla then says with Austin under her persuasion there is nothing he can’t do then Trent Baretta’s music hits. Trent runs right past Priscilla and takes Theory down with a sick kick. Trent flies out with a pescado and chops Theory as they are in the back of the building. Theory fights back and tosses a trash barrel at Trent gets pissed and returns the favor. The bell has not rung yet as the two continue to fight as they are climbing up to the production area. Priscilla distracts Trent long enough for Theory to clothesline him down. The two finally make it back to the ring where the match starts as Theory & Priscilla pose on the apron. Theory yells at the ref to ring the bell and the match is officially underway. I liked Priscilla’s promo and thought she did a good job and explained why she has chosen to align with Theory.

 

Austin Theory w/ Priscilla Kelly vs. Trent Baretta

Theory clotheslines Trent then stomps away but Trent gets his knees up on a standing moonsault attempt. Trent hits an enziguiri then a high knee in the corner. He gets two with a tornado DDT as Priscilla is no longer laughing on the outside. Theory fights back as the announcer puts over how Trent is on antibiotics. Trent misses a charge as his injured arm hits the post before tumbling outside. Theory roughs up Baretta as Priscilla smiles then stomps on his elbow. Theory locks on a kimura but Trent is able to reach the ropes with his foot. Trent comes back with a suplex but Theory is able to punt the arm then hits a torture rack bomb before putting Trent back in the kimura. Trent desperately reaches the ropes then Theory disrespects Trent, who fights back. Theory knocks Trent back down and hits a back suplex before heading up top. Theory takes his time and that allows Trent to run up and hit a belly-to-belly as both men are down. Trent hits a Busaiku Knee then a Gotch Piledriver but Theory is just able to kick out. Trent gets up and fires away but Theory is able to go after the arm. Trent eats boot on a charge then Theory hits a neckbreaker for a two count. Trent fights back and hits the Dudebuster but can only hook the legs with one arm as Theory is able to kick out. Trent places Theory up top and hits a chop then powers himself up but Theory rolls through a hurricarana then hits a TKO for the win (11:36) ***1/4.

Thoughts: Theory gets the biggest win of his career. They played off of a real-life injury to go along with the storyline from their previous match and it worked. Its nice to see Theory get a push as a heel because he was wasted as a young babyface.

 

EVOLVE Title Match: Fred Yehi vs. Zack Sabre Jr. (c)

These two start off on the mat and end in a stalemate. They take it to the mat again and wind up in the ropes then soon after that Yehi takes Sabre down with a snap suplex. They trade surfboards then trade strikes with Yehi winning that battle. Yehi stomps Sabre’s leg then hits a shotgun dropkick before working a front facelock that Sabre reverses and grapeviens the leg. Sabre works a single leg crab then switches to an STF but Yehi reaches the ropes. Yehi comes back to hit a stomp then works the neck but Sabre reverses and works the legs as he has Yehi tied up in a pretzel. Yehi escapes and takes Sabre down before hitting another shotgun dropkick. He gets just a one count with a fisherman’s suplex then locks on a bodyscissors. Yehi stomps on Sabre’s ankle then lands a few headbutts as Sabre is down in the corner. He tries for the Koji Clutch after a struggle but Sabre is able to hook the ropes. Yehi now works the arm but Sabre blocks a fisherman’s buster with a hanging kimura that brings Yehi down to his knees. Yehi escapes then reaches the ropes as Sabre locks on a triangle hold. Sabre works the arm of Yehi, who is able to go behind Sabre and hit a German suplex as both men are down. Yehi orders Sabre to his feet then slaps him across the face, asking “what he has” so Sabre responds with some nasty kicks to the face. Yehi dodges an uppercut then hits another German suplex as the crowd is getting back into the match. Sabre coutners a powerbomb attempt then tries for the octopus hold and has that locked on in the middle of the ring. Yehi counters with a dragon screw in a nice sequence then runs wild. He hits a pop-up bridging German suplex for two as both men are down on the mat. They work a reversal sequence then Yehi takes control. He hits some bicycle kicks but Sabre connects with the Penalty Kick as both men are down. They get up and trade strikes until Sabre takes him down with an arm drag then tries a bow-and-arrow but Yehi reaches the ropes. Yehi fights back and uses a great flurry of offensive moves and almost puts Sabre away with a rolling elbow. Yehi grabs a hold of the arm but Sabre catches him with a triangle choke then peppers him with elbows. Yehi tries to lift him up and eventually does as he powerbombs him and tries for another but Sabre lands on his feet. Yehi takes Sabre down with the Koji Clutch but Sabre is able to escape then counter with the European Clutch for the win (23:06) ***3/4.

Thoughts: I thought this match was really damn good. However, the crowd was not into it much and they seemed exhausted after the triple-threat tag match to be honest. Definitely a match for those who are big on technical wrestling and with a more lively crowd it could have been better.

 

After the match, Sabre tells Yehi he is an absolute maniac but one of the most creative and intelligent wrestlers he has been in the ring with and would welcome a rematch. Sabre then tells Yehi this is his town and hands him the mic before leaving. Yehi says it was his goal to bring the EVOLVE Title to Georgia and thanks the fans for their support. Yehi calls Sabre one of the best technical wrestlers today and will train harder and get better as the next time they see him he will be victorious. The crowd chants for Yehi as he leaves to close the show. A nice way to end the show as Yehi, whose not from Georgia but is based from her wrestling wise, got a chance to thank his fans.

 

Final Thoughts: I thought the show was fine. The weekend felt less special than usual though and part of that was the fact Matt Riddle was absent to wrestle over in the U.K. They are pushing some of the newer acts and made some storyline advancements too as EVOLVE continues to put out a quality and engaging product.

 

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Thursday: RF Video Reflections with Kurt Angle

Friday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 4/21/90

Saturday: Mid-South Wrestling 12/9/82

Sunday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 4/22/90

Monday: WWF Prime Time Wrestling 4/23/90

Tuesday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 4/28/90

Wednesday: EVOLVE 90 8/11/17