February 12, 2016
From the American Legion Post #308 in Reseda, CA
Your hosts are Excalibur and Joey Ryan
Dalton Castle vs. Chuck Taylor
The crowd starts a “both these guys” chant before the match. Castle stalls for a bit and has two guys in the crowd fan him down with their hats. Taylor goes for a test-of-strength but Castle keeps bridging down until he reaches the mat. They finally lock up then trade side headlocks. They have a reversal sequence and that ends with the guys trading bodyslam attempts at a rapid pace as the crowd applauds. Castle then dumps and fakes out Taylor with a dive to the floor. Back inside, Taylor drills Castle with a forearm then stomps away in the corner. Castle comes back with an armdrag then headbutts the back of Taylor’s head. Taylor counters a gutwrench and that leads to a reversal sequence ending with Taylor sending Castle into the turnbuckle with an overhead toss. Taylor chokes out Castle then rakes his back. Taylor hits a few chops but runs into a clothesline. Castle gets elbowed but catches Taylor and tosses him for his head as that gets two. They go back-and-forth until Castle gets two with a bridging German suplex. They fight up top and that ends with Castle cutting off Taylor then taking him off the ropes with a running knee from the apron. Taylor fights back and fights out with a tope con hilo but Castle swings himself on the bottom rope and takes down Taylor. They head back inside as Castle lifts him up with a waistlock but Castle counters that with a victory roll and gets the win (11:27) **3/4.
Thoughts: Fun match to start off the show. Castle acclimated himself well in his PWG debut and his style worked well with Taylor.
Trent vs. Chris Hero
Trent stalls to start off the match as the crowd starts a “Hero’s gonna kill you” chant. He bounces off of Hero then they fight over who is going to bounce off the ropes first as Trent again bounces off of Hero but teases a charging Hero then sidesteps and trips him up. Hero gets up and chops Trent hard. They exchange chops until Hero knees Trent in the face. They trade chops outside and that ends when Hero sneaks in a jab. Trent comes back with a tope then rolls Hero inside and stomps away. He dances on the apron but Hero kips-up and Yakuza Kicks Trent to the floor. Hero gets chopped into the crowd then catapults him against the bottom rope. He hits a pair of sentons for nearfalls but Trent got his knees up on the third attempt. Hero gets up and slaps Trent into the corner then stomps away. Trent fights back until Hero boots him down. Hero winds up for a roaring elbow in the corner but Trent stops that with a stomp as both men are down. Trent hits a step-up enziguiri before a running elbow in the corner. Swinging DDT gets two. Hero lands on the apron then Trent takes him off with a super kick. He flies out with a tope con hilo but Hero caught him in midair. Trent flips off but Hero nails him with a roaring elbow before rolling back inside. Hero hits a running suplex for two. Trent manages a backslide for then tries a top rope rana that Hero rolls through but Trent also rolls through the counter and drills Hero with a Shining Wizard for a nearfall. The crowd starts up a dueling chant as they fight over position. Hero breaks that up with an enziguiri then hits a discus Yakuza Kick for a nearfall. Hero watches Trent pick himself up only to slap him back down. He places Trent up top and kicks him in the face then they fight until Hero breaks up a sunset bomb attempt. He then knocks Trent down and heads up top for a moonsault but Trent runs up and takes him down with a German Suplex. Trent gets a nearfall with knee smash then a super kick. Hero steps over Trent and hits a short piledriver for a nearfall as Hero is in disbelief. He tries it again but Trent escapes then hits the Crunchy for a two count as the fans are going nuts. Trent gets caught trying a rana then Hero turns that into a piledriver but Trent is just able to kick out of that. After a rollup reversal sequence, Hero picks up Trent then hits the Tombstone for the win (20:46) ****. The crowd starts up a “that was awesome” chant after the match.
Thoughts: Excellent match. Trent did great as the undersized underdog who kept fighting back and Hero has been on a role in 2016. There were a lot of believable nearfalls here as well. Definitely something to seek out.
Jack Evans vs. Sami Callihan
Before the match, Evans yells at the crowd for making up stupid chants and makes fun of them for a bit. He then makes fun of Sami, stating he is not a top-tier talent like himself. Evans then makes a remark about feeling sorry for Sami’s mom for having to kiss him as a baby as Sami reminds Evans his mother his dead and threatens to kiss him. The crowd chants “Sami’s gonna kiss you” as he ends up backing Evans into the corner and kissing him. After that they end up in a stalemate during a criss-cross spot. Evans brings in a pitcher of beer into the ring and starts to drink then Sami does the same, but with a pitcher that is a quarter-full. Sami chugs it all as Evans chugs from the top rope but ends up spitting it all out. Sami is drinking more as they each throw a chair into the ring. Evans acts drunk then the two set up chairs and take a seat as they engage in drunken kung-fu battle that Evans wins easily. Evans then ends up planting Sami onto a chair with a rana before catching him with a high kick. Evans knocks Sami to the floor then flies out with a Flying Space Tiger Drop as Evans is still spitting up beer. Sami catches a handspring attempt by Jack and faceplants him on the ring apron. Sami then works a stretch muffler on the outside but Evans escapes and hits a 450 splash off of the ring apron. Back inside, Sami hits a half nelson suplex as both men are down. Sami is up first and hits a corner clothesline but Evans comes back with a Pele Kick then a standing sky twister for two. Evans flips out of a sunset bomb attempt but Sami comes back with three knee strikes to the face. Sami then hits a neckbreaker suplex for two as Evans got his foot on the ropes. They fight up top as Evans hits a Northern Lights suplex then follows that with a Phoenix Splash as Sami breaks up the pin by grabbing the ropes. They trade pinfalls until Sami drops him with a cradle piledriver for two. Sami slowly approaches Evans, who catches him with a crucifix for the win (14:59) **1/4.
Thoughts: This just didn’t do it for me. The comedy stuff at the beginning was meant for the live crowd and this was a mix of that and some moves more than it was an actual wrestling match. If this style works for you, and it does work better in PWG than anywhere else, by all means seek it out.
Andrew Everett vs. Adam Cole
Chuck Taylor has joined on commentary. Before the match, Cole orders the ring announcer to say that he will make everyone here his “Valentine’s Day bitch” while Cole is grabbing his crotch. Cole yells at the crowd then the two fight over an arm wringer. Cole taunts Everett, who comes back with a dropkick before working the arm. Everett hits a basement dropkick before landing a chop in the corner. He gets two with a standing moonsault but Cole catches him with a double knee smash as he came off the middle rope. Cole tosses Everett outside then roughs him up for a bit. Back inside, Cole works a chinlock. He catches Everett in a fireman’s carry then drops him on his knee for a neckbreaker. Cole roughs up Everett then taunts the crowd before loosening his tights to make Everett is “Valentine” but Everett fights back. Everett comes back with a rana as both men are down. Everett hits Cole with a springboard dropkick before flying outside with a springboard shooting star press. Damn. Everett then takes a seat as Cole is out on the floor. Back inside, Everett hits a Falcon Arrow for a nearfall. He heads back up top and rolls through a 450 then Cole boots him low. Cole locks on a figure four and yells at Everett to tap out. Everett is able to make it to the ropes as Cole does some more taunts. Everett comes back with a few kicks that get him a nearfall. He charges but Cole measured him up and connects with a super kick for a nearfall. Cole then flips off Everett then they trade go-behinds until Everett hits a reverse hurricarana. Everett heads up top and connects with a shooting star press as Cole is just able to kick out of that. That looked great by the way. They fight up top as Cole blocks a hurricarana then hits the Canadian Destroyer and follows with a brainbuster on the knee for the win (14:19) ***1/2.
Thoughts: Good match. Cole as the ultra-cocky heel who takes his opponent lightly made for a good match. Everett is a great high-flyer and bumper and makes for a good underdog. Cole excels as a dickbag heel.
Trevor Lee vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
Sabre taunts Lee after backing him into the corner. Sabre then overwhelms Lee on the mat as he easily counters his holds. Lee rolls outside for a breather then yells at the fans. Back inside, Lee takes Sabre down with test-of-strength and grounds him until Sabre bridges out then works a strangle hold and then scoots under Lee, who is pissed. Lee yells at the referee that he will go home and “not whoop this Brit’s ass.” Sabre tells him to shut the fuck up before toying with him again as he works the arm with all sorts of holds, even some using his legs. Lee finally gets an advantage as he deadlifts Sabre and tosses him throat-first on the middle rope. Sabre rolls outside as Lee drapes him over the apron and nails him with an uppercut. Back inside, Lee chokes out Sabre before tossing him across the ring. Lee continues to rough up Sabre then goes outside to dance for a bit before targeting the shoulder. Sabre manages a rollup but runs into a clothesline after that as Lee goes back to working over the shoulder. Lee keeps taunting Sabre, who comes back with a few kicks until Lee boots him down. Sabre gets whipped into the corner but springs off the turnbuckle then slides underneath Lee before yanking him down by the arm. Sabre hits a few running uppercuts before connecting with the Penalty Kick for two. They then engage in a sweet reversal sequence that ends with Sabre hitting a Dragon Suplex for a two count. Sabre now works a key lock but Lee is able to pick him up and drive him into the corner. Sabre runs and uses a hanging triangle but Lee dumps him over his knee. Lee gets two with a double stomp as both men are down. Lee comes back with a Superman Elbow but Sabre counters a suplex in midair then hits a Tiger Suplex. Sabre then holds on to work a behind-the-back Dragon Sleeper but Lee rolled through and connects with a super kick. Both men are down then they sit in front of each other cross-legged and start laying into each other with slaps and chops. They are back on their feet as Sabre trips Lee up before hitting a flying European uppercut. Sabre charges but Lee reverses a crossbody in midair for two. Sabre rolls through a Fisherman’s Buster with a small package then works a hanging guillotine. Lee then hits Sabre with the Orange Crush for a two count. He boots Sabre outside then rolls him back inside and tries a German but Sabre counters and ends up putting on an Octopus Hold before bending his leg back completely as Lee immediately taps (24:37) ****.
Thoughts: Another excellent match. Sabre’s technical wrestling skills are unmatched and the way it aggravated Lee made for a great match. Lee’s heel work continues to improve here as well. Sabre’s finisher was something else too. I’m torn between calling this or Trent/Hero the match of the night. But regardless, you should seek them out.
“Speedball” Mike Bailey vs. Evil Uno
They start off by feeling each other out as the announcers talk about their history wrestling in Montreal. Neither guy can gain an advantage then as Uno offered a handshake he pulled Bailey into a DDT. Bailey comes back by flipping over Uno then taking him down. He hits a moonsault knee drop as Uno rolls outside. Bailey takes Uno down with a baseball slide but catches Bailey and drops him on the apron with an Alabama Slam. My lord. Uno then hits Bailey with a brainbuster on the floor before putting the chair across his chest and taking a seat. Bailey ducks a chop as Uno whacks the ring post. Back inside, Uno takes Bailey down with a neckbreaker then bites his toes. Uno roughs up Bailey and even taunts and abuses the referee. They trade chops as Uno wins that battle as he destroys Bailey in the corner. Bailey catches a charging Uno with a heel kick as both men are down. Bailey is up first and hits a few running kicks then both men start trading charging attacks until Bailey hits a corkscrew enziguiri then follows that with a Shiranui for a nearfall. Uno catches a kick then lifts Bailey up for a chokeslam for two. They continue to trade moves until Bailey takes him outside with an inverted rana. Bailey then flies out with a sky twister that he overshot a bit. Back inside, Uno takes Bailey off of the top and drops Bailey into a neckbreaker from his shoulders as that got a two count. Uno grabs Bailey’s crotch and lifts him up for a powerbomb then hits a piledriver as that only gets two. Bailey comes back with a crucifix and as Uno lifts him up, hits another inverted rana. Bailey heads up top but Uno cuts him off then hits a Super Tombstone piledriver from the middle rope. Uno sells his knee then covers but Bailey is able to kick out. Uno heads up top and hits a moonsault but Bailey kicks out at one. Bailey gets up and hits his rapid-fire kicks until Uno sends him into the corner. Bailey drops Uno with a roundhouse kick then hits a shooting star knee drop before finishing him off with a Buzzsaw Kick for the win (18:24) ***.
Thoughts: Not much in terms of psychology (I mean a Super Tombstone should be the finisher to end all finishers) but my god did Uno inflict a ton of punishment on Bailey. Watching some of these moves made me cringe as they looked brutal but neither guy appeared to be hurt at the end and they’ve wrestled each other many of times so I assume they trust each other in the ring. Sadly, this will likely be the last PWG appearance of Bailey for at least five years after getting busted for not having an active work visa as he is from Canada and is barred from the USA for the next five years.
PWG Title Match: Drew Galloway vs. Roderick Strong (c)
Chris Hero is now with Excalibur on commentary. Strong yells at the ref then tries to attack Galloway but that backfires. Galloway tosses him around and beats Strong all over the ring. They now start chopping each other in the crowd until Galloway tosses Strong into a piece of the ceiling. He then sends Strong into the exit door with a swinging slam. They head back towards the ring where Strong comes back with a dropkick. In the ring, Strong boots Galloway in the face then hammers away. He leaped off of the top but Galloway catches him and turns that into a falling slam as he was heading down. They fight on the apron where Strong drops him with a back suplex. Back inside, Strong roughs up Galloway and targets the knee. Galloway tries to fight back but sells his knee as Strong kicks him down then works a chinlock. Strong breaks then heads out to yell at a fan who taunted him. As he heads back to the ring, Galloway attacks him from the apron. Strong is able to regain control then takes down Galloway with a leg lariat after he was rolled up. Galloway fights back with chops but Strong hits him with an enziguiri then drops Galloway with a back suplex. Galloway blocks a sick kick then hits Strong with a buckle bomb as both men are down. Galloway is up first and fires away. He takes Strong down with a top rope clothesline. Spinebuster gets two. Galloway places Strong across the corner and boots him off the ropes. He then climbs up top but Strong cuts him off from the apron. Galloway is in the tree-of-woe and ends up taking Strong down as he sprung up. Galloway sends Strong into the corner with an inverted Alabama Slam then follows with a sick kick for a nearfall. Strong kicks Galloway in the knee then hits a curb stomp as both men are down. Strong hits a superplex then follows that with a gutbuster. However, Galloway comes right back with a clothesline then hits the Future Shock after a reversal sequence as that gets two. They fight up top where Strong trips Galloway down. Strong drills Galloway with kicks and knee smashes before getting two with a Tiger Bomb. Galloway ends up catching Strong and hits a tombstone as that gets two. Strong avoids a charge as Galloway rams his shoulder into the post. Strong distracts the ref with the Tag Team Title belts as he the hits Galloway with his PWG Title belt but that only gets two. Strong then hits a flurry of running knee strikes before hitting the End of Heartache for the win (22:15) ***1/4. After the match, Adam Cole runs out as they beat on Galloway. Zack Sabre Jr. runs out for the save but as he put Strong in a hanging Kimura, Cole drills him with a super kick. After that, Strong grabs the mic and tells Sabre that he embarrasses him, not the other way around, and at All Star Weekend 12, if he wants some, come get some. Sabre then promises the crowd he will win the PWG Title.
Thoughts: The match was good but it was not memorable or anything. For me, the spot where Galloway immediately hit Strong with a clothesline after he took a superplex and gutbuster killed the flow. I thought they were building up to something really good prior to that spot. The post-match stuff was well done and they’ve built up the Sabre/Strong match as good as you can with a promotion that runs about 10 shows a year.
Final Thoughts: Overall, a solid show. It was also better than PWG’s last offering, which was the mildly disappointing Lemmy show. There were two **** matches by my account and a lot of comedy and other spots that are expected from PWG but are not going to be enjoyed by everyone. I thought it was an enjoyable show overall and the atmosphere was better than Lemmy as well.