Ballroom Brawl 12
Date: July 13, 2019
Location: Commodore Ballroom, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Commentators: Peter Brown, Cody Von Wilson
This is Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling (ECCW), another promotion that I have heard a lot about but never actually seen. Again, thanks to the magic of Highspots, I get to knock another indy promotion off of my list and see what I can find out there. The card isn’t exactly big but there are some interesting names. Let’s get to it.
Keep in mind that as usual, I don’t follow this promotion and have no idea about any characters or storylines so please bare with me.
Opening sequence, which looks like an extended version of a regular TV show opening, though it does include the show’s card. It’s a nice highlight video, but going nearly three minutes might be a bit much.
The ring announcer, named Sweatervest, gets his own entrance. Granted it’s to Steve Austin’s music and with a pretty good Austin impression so I’ve seen worse. Sweatervest runs down some of the bigger matches and we’re ready to go.
David Starr vs. Judas Icarus vs. Beef Boy vs. Travis Williams
This is pretty close geographically to DEFY Wrestling and the opening match on their show that I looked at a few months back was also a four way featuring Icarus. Speaking of Icarus, he has a pretty big guy named the Natural with him, while Williams has Goddess Mandy. Beef is about 170lbs but billed at 606, giving him a bit of a Crash Holly vibe. Then we have Starr, who isn’t in wrestling anymore because he’s kind of a horrible person (allegedly).
The fans are behind Beef, though they should be behind the referee, who is the tallest person in the ring. Those same fans also think that Williams looks like Justin Bieber…and they might be on to something with that. The four way trash talk is on until Williams knocks Beef to the floor, only to get chopped outside as well. Starr Thesz presses Icarus down for two and a rolling kick to the face puts Icarus on the floor.
Beef comes in for a running hurricanrana on Starr but Williams is right back in to run Beef over. One heck of a chop puts Williams on the floor but Icarus cuts off Beef’s dive. An exchange of uppercuts gives us a standoff until Starr comes back in to chop at Williams. The big wind up chop in the corner is blocked though, meaning the big chop has to hit Icarus instead. Williams takes Starr down and stops to pose, allowing Starr to come back with another chop. A slap gets on Starr’s nerves and a long series of strikes has Williams mostly done on the ropes.
Williams is fine enough to hit a slingshot DDT but it’s back to Beef vs. Icarus. Some right hands give Beef control until Starr takes him down with a suplex for two. Icarus is back up with a string of uppercuts but Williams busts out a pair of RKO’s. Beef hits one of his own on Icarus, only to have Williams hit a middle rope version to Starr and Beef at the same time, leaving everyone down. That means the four way slugout from their knees until it turns into a circle chop off.
Williams is the only one left standing and takes Starr out with a quick suicide dive. Back in and Icarus grabs a fireman’s carry onto the knee to drop Williams, who is sent outside. Beef is left alone in the ring so he hits a running Blockbuster to take Williams off the apron and down onto the other two. Back in and Starr drops all three of them in a row, including a lariat to the back of Icarus’ head and a powerbomb onto the knee to break Beef. Williams dives in for a save and they’re all down again.
It’s Starr up first to stomp away on everyone else, though the fans are still behind Beef. Starr pulls Beef up but Icarus and Williams double team Starr down, setting up Beef’s Swanton. Icarus and Beef take Williams to the top, where he rams their heads together to save himself. That leaves Beef to drop Icarus onto the apron (Commentary: “Beef just Scar’ed his Mufasa!”) and another Swanton hits Judas for two, as Mandy pulls the referee out (ignore the referee’s hand slapping the mat for the third time). Williams kicks Beef low and hits a running knee for the pin at 14:23.
Rating: B-. This is the new version of the Cruiserweight match from the WCW Monday Nitro days as you have a bunch of people getting in the ring at once and flying around until someone wins. The fans were behind Beef but he took the fall anyway, which might not be the best way to start the show. Starr felt like the, uh, star here, but Williams had the fans hating him and that is a good thing. Just maybe don’t have him win by pinning the crowd favorite.
Come to upcoming shows!
Bishy Wishy/Randy Myers vs. The Shining
Bishy Wishy is Bishop and Fergie while the Shining is Chris Voros/Nicole Matthews/Patrick Voros (with Kristopher Kassidy). Voros and Voros are twins, just to make things even more confusing, and Matthews has her ECCW Women’s Title. Apparently Myers had a hand in the Twins’ development and they turned on him so it’s time for revenge. Bishy Wishy both wear purple and dance to the ring, which has Sweatervest cracking up.
Finally we have Myers, who is sung to the ring by a woman performing Welcome To The Black Parade. With that out of the way, the very flamboyant Myers (the Weirdo Hero, complete with green hair) comes out and runs through the crowd as the woman sings another sounds (sounds like she’s saying “so carry on” over and over). Kassidy tries his own song but Sweatervest is having none of that.
We actually get to the match, with Fergie and Matthews starting, and the latter stealing Fergie’s hat! That makes Fergie so mad that he lets Matthews bounce off of him with some shoulders. The hat goes back on and he shoulders Matthews into the corner for the tag to Patrick (commentary thinks it’s him at least). Some chops set up the tag to Myers, who tells Patrick to STOOOOOOOP and SHUUUUUUSH before firing off some Al Snow trapping headbutts.
Bishop and Chris come in, with Bishop hitting a quick powerslam. Patrick gets slammed onto Chris and it’s a moonsault from Bishop to crush both of them. Matthews comes back in and gets Michinoku Driver for two as everything breaks down. The Voros Twins take over but spend too much time posing, meaning they’re knocked off the apron. Fergie throws Matthews onto them and Bishop hits the big dive to take out the trio as this is one sided so far.
Back in and Kassidy’s interference is cut off, allowing Matthews to bring in the belt…to no avail as she is cut off too. That’s enough for Kassidy to get in a briefcase shot to Fergie and the villains take over. The Voros Twins stomp away before it’s off to Matthews for a heck of a chop. Bishop gets drawn in, allowing the triple teaming to ensue. Fergie shoves both Voros Twins away at the same time but the referee doesn’t see the hot tag. That means Matthews can get Fergie back into the corner so the chopping can ensue.
Some dust to the face blinds Fergie to make it worse but either Bishop or Myers sprays Matthews in the face with some water. Fergie finally flips Matthews off his shoulders but the Voros twins break up the tag AGAIN. Matthews grabs a choke but Fergie powers her over for the hot tag to Myers, sending all of the Shining to the floor in fear. Back in and a Russian legsweep/Downward Spiral combination drops the Twins before kicking Matthews low.
With that not working, Myers puts her in a fireman’s carry as Bishy Wishy hit a Rock Bottom and Stunner on a Twin each. An AA to Matthews gives us a triple cover and a triple two count with a triple foot on the rope. Bishop gets to clean house until Fergie hits a Bubba Bomb on Patrick. That leaves Chris to hit a middle rope dropkick/backsplash to Bishy Wishy but hold on as Myers kisses Kassidy and rolls up Matthews for the pin at 12:39.
Rating: C. The match itself wasn’t great but for a team comprised of Bishy Wishy and the Weirdo Hero, I got into this one and had a good enough time. I’ve seen Myers before and he certainly gets your attention, which is more than you would expect from someone who is that over the top. The Twins were just ok and Matthews was her usual pretty good self, but the match wasn’t exactly a classic outside of the standard six person formula.
Myers and Bishy Wishy get sung out again.
In the back, Travis Williams says you have no idea how cocky he is going to be now that he has beaten Beef Boy. He was tired of hearing promos (his word) from everyone else and now he is at the top after two years. Now he wants a title.
War Games is on September 6 with Team Eddie Osbourne vs. Team Scotty Mac.
Eddie Osbourne vs. Brody King
Osbourne has The Natural and Judas Icarus with him. They stare at each other to start before locking up after nearly a minute of glaring. An exchange of shoulders doesn’t go anywhere but King’s second attempt staggers Osbourne a good bit. They slug/chop it out with King getting the better of it, setting up a running clothesline against the ropes. King shoulders him down and gets to pose a bit, like any tattooed monster should.
Back up and King snaps off a running hurricanrana to the floor, setting up….a slide underneath the ropes that doesn’t make any contact. They chop it out on the floor, with King chopping the post by mistake. A Rock Bottom onto the apron plants King again and the Natural holds him in place, allowing Osbourne to hit a big Cannonball off the apron through King through a chair.
Back in and Osbourne chops in the corner before choking on the ropes. A lot of posing allows King to get back up and hit some running clotheslines in the corner. One heck of a crossbody gives King two and he wins another chop off, only to have the Natural make a save. Icarus gets tossed onto Osbourne and the Natural, setting up a heck of a piledriver….for two. Ok well done on the false finish.
A clothesline connects but the Natural has the referee. Osbourne is back with a Rock Bottom and a Death Valley Driver for two of his own and the shock is strong with this one. King can’t fireman’s carry him but he can block Osbourne’s running knee. A Samoan driver finally puts Osbourne away at 14:51.
Rating: B. Sometimes you need two hosses to beat each other up for about fifteen minutes. Some of Osbourne’s stuff didn’t look great, but King is enough of a monster to make almost anything work. This was the fun kind of monster clash that they made it seem like it would be and I had a good time with it as a result.
TJP is ready for the main event.
Here is Erik Strange with Scotty Mac, the latter of whom seems to be a big deal around here, even if he is badly limping. Mac is returning from an injury and talks about how he has always put ECCW above everything else, from family to relationships. They have sold this place out again but his leg is still banged up so he can’t wrestle tonight. That’s why he is here with Strange, who is going to wrestle for the Tag Team Titles for the both of them. Strange is winning the titles on his own so they can defend them when Mac is healthy again.
Hold on though as Strange has a replacement partner: Andy Bird. This brings out Bird, who has a bird costume made of Christmas lights and what looks to be one of those old plague masks that Marty Scurll would wear. It’s quite the visual and makes for a heck of an entrance. Hold on though as commentator Peter Brown grabs the mic (with Sweatervest explaining how to turn it on) to talk about how this is a dark time.
The Grindhouse has been the Tag Team Champions for a year now but that is changing tonight. Brown doesn’t like the fans booing him but he also doesn’t like Bird here as the replacement. He mocks Strange for being injury prone and accuses the three of them of using the Freebird Rule. The fans don’t like Brown, who finally gets to the point by trying to sign the three of them up. That’s a no from Bird but the trio wants to have a conference. Strange teases signing but instead it’s a ruse for Bird to hit Brown with his hair (ala Bianca Belair). And now, a match.
Tag Team Titles: Grindhouse vs. Andy Bird/Erik Strange vs. Wisemen vs. ReLoaded vs. Gross Misconduct
Grindhouse: Ashley Sixx/Cat Power
Wisemen: Billy Suede/Tony Baroni
ReLoaded: Jacky Lee/Shareef Morrow
Gross Misconduct: Drexl/Steve West
Grindhouse is defending and just in case this isn’t messy enough, FALLS COUNT ANYWHERE WITH ELIMINATIONS!!! Oh and the Wisemen have the Goddess Mandy with them because we need more people. I’m not even going to pretend to be able to keep track of everything going on in this one, because it’s more than a bit insane. The entrances alone take a VERY long time, which doesn’t exactly give me the most confidence.
Grindhouse gets surrounded to start and the brawl is on until it’s down to Power vs. Suede in the ring. Power clothesline him down for an early two (thankfully from the two referees) but it’s Sixx (a man, which might not have been clear) clearing the ring. Baroni breaks up the dive though, leaving ReLoaded to hit stereo suicide dives, because they’re the kind of smaller guys who would hit stereo dives.
Sixx goes up top for a dive onto a bunch of people, followed by Strange hitting his own big flip dive. Bird adds his own huge dive and everyone is down on the floor. The cameras lose sight of most of the people involved until it’s Lee beating up Sixx in the ring. Lee manages a headscissors into the corner….and we cut to a closeup of wrestlers brawling around the arena. We cut back to the ring with Sixx getting a cover but with no referee to count.
Suede has Power sprayed with beer at the bar and we’ll just stay on these two as commentary tells us what else is going on around the arena. The camera loses them for a second before coming back to Suede and Power walking around the arena and near what looks to be the merchandise stand. The two of them fight to the back as we hear about Bird being knocked down with a bench. Granted we can’t actually see that because the camera is on some fans. Back in and it’s Lee taking over on Baroni as we’re told that Strange and Bird have been eliminated at 9:24.
Baroni hits a pop up Codebreaker for two on Lee, setting up West hitting a Stinger Splash into a DDT (cool) for two on Sixx. Lee hits another big dive onto the pile, leaving Drexl to save West from Sixx as well. Power saves Sixx from a double suplex before knocking Drexl and West off the apron for the pin and the elimination at 13:10.
We’re down to three teams so things chill a bit, with Baroni and Suede stomping on Power. ReLoaded try to dive in and sends the Wisemen into each other, setting up a kick to the Baroni’s head for two. Suede makes the save with what looks to be hairspray, allowing him to pin Morrow at 15:17.
So we’re down to Power vs. the Wisemen as Sixx was handcuffed to the rope somewhere in there. Cue Beef Boy to get Sixx away from the rope and dropkick a stop sign into Suede’s face. Baroni is up with some superkicks of his own but the chair shot hits the rope and comes back into Baroni’s face this time. A Magic Killer (with Beef assisting) is enough to retain the titles at 17:23.
Rating: C-. This really wasn’t my style as there was way too much going on with the camera barely being able to follow things throughout the arena and the whole thing being a total mess. Do this gauntlet style and it is so much better but this was about as good as it could have gone given the situation. The fans seem happy with the win, but other than ReLoaded, it wasn’t like any of the challengers really stood out. Just cool things down a bit and it’s a huge improvement.
Post match Grindhouse celebrates for a good bit.
Brian Pillman Jr. is ready for his match with Kevin Sullivan, which is a long time in the making. Sullivan came in to MLW and tried to extend his career by latching on to the young stars. That’s how Pillman helped keep him a star, but now he has to take out the garbage. Tonight he is the Taskmaster, and he is tasked with ending Sullivan’s career.
We recap Sullivan vs. Pillman, which comes via a clip from MLW Fusion in August 2018. Sullivan wanted to help Pillman, but not so much his friends Teddy Hart and Davey Boy Smith Jr. Then Pillman took Sullivan out to prove his loyalties.
Sullivan promises revenge.
Kevin Sullivan vs. Brian Pillman Jr.
No Holds Barred. Sullivan jumps him before the bell and the fight goes into the crowd, as you probably expected to be the case. A shot to the throat rocks Pillman again but he manages a posting to get a breather as I don’t think the bell has rung yet. Some more strikes have Sullivan in trouble until he low blows his way to freedom. The brawl stays in the crowd and I can’t see anything going on, as tends to be the case with this show.
We get a better camera angle as Pillman cranks on the arm and they walk around the arena some more. Sullivan is busted open and they finally get inside, with Pillman slowly hammering away in the corner. A shot to the eyes gives Sullivan a breather but Pillman is right back with forearms to the face.
Hold on though as Pillman offers a handshake….and then beats on him even more. The referee tries to break it up so Pillman knocks him down, followed by some shots to producers who try to intervene. Then Sullivan’s fireball accidentally goes off in his hand early, meaning Sullivan walks off instead. Pillman cuts him off and they brawl to the back…and we’ll say that’s it at 9:45.
Rating: D-. Yeah this was a total disaster and I can’t say I’m all that surprised. Sullivan is almost 70 here and could barely move, including barely doing anything as Pillman beat on him in the corner. It doesn’t help that they were having a match built on a story between Sullivan and Pillman’s father in WCW and was then build up in MLW. Total miss here and that shouldn’t be anything close to a surprise.
ECCW Title: Artemis Spencer vs. TJ Perkins
Spencer is defending and we get some Big Match Intros. Feeling out process to start with TJP taking him to the mat for some riding before flipping up to his feet. Spencer does something similar and TJP is a bit impressed. An arm crank has Spencer in trouble but he spins it over into an armbar of his own. Back up and TJP twists around into the headscissors on the mat, meaning it’s time for some dabbing.
That takes too long though as Spencer pulls him down into a headscissors of his own. TJP nips up into a bow and arrow, which is flipped over into another standoff. We get the Canadian Content with TJP trying the Sharpshooter but Spencer pulls him into a failed triangle choke attempt. TJP grabs a Sharpshooter while grabbing the arms before switching into a Muta Lock of off things.
With that broken up, Spencer hits a heck of a springboard wristdrag but TJP pulls him into a DDT to cut it off again. There’s a slingshot hilo but Spencer sends him outside, setting up a heck of an Asai moonsault. Back in and Spencer’s armbar sends TJP straight to the ropes as he is starting to pick TJP apart. TJP gets his feet up in the corner though and a hurricanrana gives him a breather.
A tornado DDT gives TJP two but the Detonation Kick is blocked. That’s fine with TJP, who dropkicks the knee out to put Spencer in more trouble. An exchange of kicks to the head means a double knockdown and we get an old ten count. TJP is up first and knocks him into the ropes, setting up a slingshot kick to the head. Spencer drives TJP hard into the corner though and a headbutt lays TJP out on the top.
The top rope backsplash crushes TJP for two so Spencer goes after the arm again. That works for TJP, who pulls him into something close to a Sharpshooter. Spencer tries to reverse that into the Arte-choke (I chuckled) but gets pulled into a kneebar, which Spencer reverses into a cradle for two.
A powerbomb backbreaker plants TJP, who is fine enough to crotch Spencer on top. The top rope superplex sets up some rolling suplexes but Spencer kicks him in the head. TJP dragon screws the leg though and the Detonation Kick gets a very close two. Spencer catches him on top and tries another backsplash, only to have Spencer pull him into the Arte-choke. TJP is done, meaning a Spiral Tap can retain the title at 18:05.
Rating: B. That’s a good way to make someone like Spencer feel like a bigger star. Spencer hung in there with a more established name from the big leagues and beat him in the middle of the ring to retain the title. TJP is someone who can have a good match with anyone and he elevated Spencer here. Solid match and it felt like a main event, especially with something that didn’t seem to have much of a story other than “here’s a name for a challenger”.
Respect is shown post match.
In the back, Spencer says he’s ready for anyone to end the show.
Overall Rating: B-. I liked what we got here, though that Pillman vs. Sullivan match should be forgotten as quickly as possible. Other than that though, the biggest issue here was the camera work, which felt fairly low budget at times and was often missing spots or moments. The good thing is that the wrestling itself was quite good, as the talent shined through. I can see why this is a promotion that has stuck around for a long time and I wouldn’t be opposed to seeing something else from them down the line.
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