WrestleCon SuperShow 2018 Live Notes

And super isn’t too far off.

Last year in Orlando, one of the most entertaining shows I took in was the WrestleCon SuperShow. This is pretty much a big show featuring a collection of old school wrestlers, international stars and young up and comers thrown together for a fun show. There aren’t many storylines and the whole thing is built around just having a fun night of wrestling. Last year’s show was incredible and this one had a lot to live up to. Let’s get to it.

Before we got started PWG’s Excalibur came out and said that going forward, the SuperShow would be named after Mark Hitchcock, who worked for Highspots (the company that helped produce the show) and passed away while on his honeymoon just before this year’s event. This was a cool moment and a nice gesture.

The show started about half an hour late, but that’s to be expected at something like this. As usual, there were several wrestlers outside at their merchandise tables, all of whom were very polite and more than willing to chat with you, even if you weren’t buying anything.

1. Penta El Zero M b. Joey Janela – Pumphandle Driver, 7:52, C.

I’ve never actually seen a Janela match…and I don’t think I get it. He’s a name I’ve heard a lot about over the last year or two but I really don’t get the hype. The match was nothing of note, save for a sick THUD when Janela hit a Death Valley Driver onto the apron….two minutes into the match. A bunch of superkicks set up Penta breaking Joey’s arm (or close to it at least) and hitting the pumphandle driver for the pin. Nothing of note here, but last year’s opener wasn’t great either.

2. Joey Ryan’s Andy Kaufman Intergender Challenge – DQ, 1:23.

Now this was interesting as Ryan is now doing the Kaufman intergender challenge where he’ll fight any woman because a man can beat them. This included Ryan wearing Kaufman’s robe and the exact same ring gear, down to the white body suit and blue shorts. He even did the same soap promo that Kaufman made famous in Memphis about thirty five years ago. The problem is this just made me want to see Jerry Lawler come out and beat Ryan up…..AND JERRY LAWLER ANSWERED THE CHALLENGE!

This was one of those surprise moments that makes this show cool: it felt like the right move and is a cool idea because it’s what makes the most sense in this situation. The problem was Lawler couldn’t use the piledriver in Louisiana, which he didn’t seem to know coming in. Instead he kicked Ryan low, and if you know Joey Ryan, you can imagine the shock on Lawler’s face. A fireball to the crotch got a DQ, but don’t worry because Ryan ensured us that everything down there was fine. Of note: this was thirty five years to the day that Lawler first piledrove Kaufman. Cool moment, barely a match of course.

3. Team Dashwood b. Team Lee – Quintuple submission, 10:23, C.

Tenille Dashwood, Madison Eagles, Nicole Savoy, Shazza McKenzie, Tessa Blanchard

Trevor Lee, Caleb Konley, Zane Riley, Jake Manning, Maxwell Jacob Friedman

This one had A LOT to live up to after last year’s incredible ten man tag. The ten person match was incredible and the most fun I’ve ever had watching a single wrestling match. This year went more with the current theme of the women’s revolution and there’s nothing wrong with that.

Dashwood (formerly Emma) was crazy over and showed more fire than she ever did in WWE with a very energetic entrance. The It’s All About Me character works very well for her and shows how awesome she could have been in WWE if they hadn’t botched it. I’m not overly familiar with most of the women, but I’ve seen Eagles before. She’s easy to remember as she stands about 6’1 and towered over almost everyone on either team.

Before the match, Lee said that if his team won, his three partners other than Konley would be signed to Impact Wrestling. You can imagine how well this went over. What also went over fairly poorly was Konley saying we might as well just start with Dashwood kissing him so he sat in a chair where comedy, in the form of the 300lb Riley accidentally kissing him instead, ensued.

The rest of the match was what you would expect: the women being competitive and using technique while the men lumbered around like idiots (including Manning, the Man Scout, reading his scouting manual while wrestling, as is his custom). There was a great series of dives to the floor and a sequence of at least eight people having a submission on someone at the same time. As in all eight were in one big chain, almost like a submission centipede. Stupid and contrived, but exactly what you would expect from a show like this, which was fine.

The finish saw a quintuple submission with the men all tapping at the same time, which was a very abrupt ending. I was expecting this to go a lot longer, but it proved its point well enough. It’s not a great match but it did its job. Like I said though, last year’s match wasn’t being touched and everyone knew it.

4. Tomohiro Ishii b. Jeff Cobb – Suplex, 15:12, B+.

Ishii is a tough guy from New Japan and Cobb is better known as Matanza from Lucha Underground (very friendly guy who chatted with me about Nintendo 64 vs. Super Nintendo before the show). This was a hoss fight of the highest degree and they didn’t try to make it anything else.

They slugged it out (with an exchange of forearms that lasted over a minute) and threw each other around until one of them couldn’t get up. Cobb made the mistake of hitting him once too often though and Ishii beat the tar out of him, finishing with a suplex that was supposed to be his signature brainbuster. This is what Cobb vs. Lashley from last year should have been and Cobb looked like a star. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wasn’t in WWE by this time next year.

5. Rey Fenix/Rey Horus b. Bandido/Flamita – Falcon Arrow to Bandido, 12:22, B+.

Horus is better known as Dragon Azteca Jr. from Lucha Underground. I’m not even going to try to describe this match as I couldn’t do it justice. This was the most insane, high flying match that I’ve ever seen with everyone doing one crazy dive and flip after another. It was the kind of lucha match you would want to see and is well worth going out of your way to find. The fans threw money into the ring after the match and I can’t say I disagree. Just in credible stuff and easily the match of the night from an entertainment perspective.

6. Mexicools b. Jason Cade/Matt Classic/Teddy Hart – Rollup to Cade, 10:00, C+.

This was Chico El Luchador/Psychosis/Super Crazy with Juventud Guerrera only showing up for the introductions. I’m not sure why A, someone thought we needed a Mexicools reunion and B, why this was put on after the great lucha match before it. It wasn’t a bad match by any stretch but it didn’t really need to be on the show, other than a way to get Cade (big star in last year’s ten man tag) and Classic (Colt Cabana in a mask doing an old school wrestler character) on the show.

7. Will Osprey b. Sammy Gueverra, Adam Brooks and Shane Strickland – Oscutter to Gueverra, 12:34, B.

Ospreay was very, very banged up coming into this, to the point where it wasn’t clear if he would be able to wrestle over the weekend. He did compete (at least twice) but his neck and shoulder were so banged up that you could tell it wasn’t his full speed. This was the third match in a row built around high flying and it was starting to wear on the crowd. Ospreay was a treat to see, but it would have been better if he hadn’t been hurt (not his fault of course).

It was entertaining while it lasted with Brooks playing a great heel and Gueverra always being fun to watch. The Oscutter looked great too and finished one of the better matches of the night. The injuries to Ospreay were just too much though and it was clear that he probably shouldn’t have been in the ring for a little while longer.

8. David Starr/Brian Cage/Minoru Suzuki b. Sami Callihan/Juice Robinson/Hiroshi Tanahashi – Armbar to Callihan, 14:48, C+

Tanahashi and Suzuki were surprise partners and of course got some of the strongest reactions of the night with Suzuki’s in particular being awesome. Cage tore the house down here with some great looking dives, including one to the floor to take everyone down. In short, someone his size shouldn’t be able to do that. Suzuki made Callihan tap to an armbar and beat up Tanahashi post match. That helped a bit as they never actually touched during the match. This wasn’t a great match

9. Golden Lovers b. Chuck Taylor/Flip Gordon – Golden Trigger to Gordon, 13:38, C+

Gordon was a mystery partner after Taylor’s regular partner, Trent Barretta, broke his arm and tore his bicep. The mystery partner was a pretty big factor in the match and Chuck had some swerve options, including the Swamp Monster (a guy in a Cousin Itt (look him up) suit), Dan Barry (didn’t show up), Orange Cassidy (Taylor: “He’s probably asleep.”) and Barretta himself. Rocky Romero came out after Barretta, sending Taylor into a rant about how Romero already stole him once and how much Taylor hated him.

Flip finally came out and said he didn’t want to be his partner as he wanted to hear about being on All In. Taylor said he had been on the phone with the REAL leader of the Bullet Club, Cody. If Flip wins, he’s All In. The match was about what you would expect, with Barretta coming back down and handing Taylor a cigarette and sunglasses in a bit I didn’t understand. The result wasn’t surprising, but that wasn’t the point of course. Entertaining way to end a show that went on too long.

Post match Taylor asked for a match with the Golden Lovers when Barretta was healthy (calling him an idiot for coming back too soon) and Omega thanked us for coming.

Overall, the show might not have been as good as last year’s but it was still very entertaining. They got in a bunch of surprises (Lawler legitimately got me) and some very good matches, but comparing it to last year’s show isn’t exactly fair. It was a very good venue (my seats were looking down at the ring and if I looked over my shoulder I could see the talent on a small balcony before and after their matches) and the crowd was hot all night. Good show, and definitely something I’d take in again whenever I go back to Wrestlemania.

 

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