Thursday, November 9, 2017

PWG Battle of Los Angeles 2017 - Stage 1

PWG Battle of Los Angeles 2017 - Stage 1

10/14/17 EDIT - The full show has been reviewed!

Ya'll know how I feel about PWG.  I haven't watched much wrestling this year but checking out some 1990's W*ING has made me somewhat inspired. I write my own wrestling for fun these days when I'm bored as I feel I can do a better job of it.

Brian Cage vs Dezmond Xavier

"It's not a bread basket, it's a protein basket of Brian Cage" - Announcer
Desmond Xavier got the win, getting on Cage's back and flipping him back. Bad match. This was all big moves and spots from the very start. No storyline, no passion and no emotion. The big guy flipped as much as the little guy and the little guy did as much power stuff as the big guy. This is the type of stuff I hate and we are not off to a good start. Cage has all the tools too. He's big, looks legit and can move, but I would have rather seen more of a David vs Goliath type of match here.

Marty Scurll vs Flash Morgan Webster
Never seen Webster, but I did see Scurll in TNA's British Bootcamp years ago.

Scurll said he didn't know who his opponent was, then the announcer mentioned they fought before. Why? He called Flash a massive waste of space.
"I'm gonna give you until the count of 3 to get the hell out of my ring." - Scurll
They teased Webster getting the 3 for this but said Scurll's foot was on the ropes.

Marty Scurll beat Flash Morgan Webster. Story of the match was Webster being the underdog and trying to pull off the upset all match long. Lots of little roll-ups and surprise pin attempts before Scurll got the win. They did do more than they should have - Webster did a moonsault, an inverted senton and tope con hilo here but I can gaurantee this is going to be one of the lesser offenders on the show. Not that bad of a match at all and at some points I liked it. Webster has some potential as an underdog babyface.

Rey Fenix vs Rey Horus
Battle of the kings here! The announcers suggested they do the intros in spanish.

"Horus, huh?" | "Yeah, he's like the Egyptian God. King God."

"C'mon baby." | "Yeah, Chris Jericho under that mask"

The finish
Rey Fenix beat Rey Horus with a botched rolling version of La Escalera. Horus botched his first few moves possibly injuring his move and really wasn't smooth at all. They did lots of cool moves and spots, but they also got busted calling half the spots and working together throughout the match. They could have done half the stuff they did and got a similar reaction.They also started running out of moves and started repeating stuff. This was mostly a lucha version of a Sabu 1997 stunt show. The finish was really out of nowhere too and was botched. The announcers were amusing though.

Jeff Cobb and Matt Riddle vs Donovan Dijak and Keith Lee
4 of the big upcoming guys in wrestling here. Dijak is real real spotty and is somehow able to kill both his height and his athleticism at the same time. Lee has some personality and good size but is the ProWresBlog 2017 winner for "Most Likely to Tear His ACL". Cobb and Riddle aren't bad at all.

Keith Lee in Gray, Dijak in Red

Cobb in white, Riddle in black

The finish
Matt Riddle and Jeff Cobb beat Keith Lee and Donovan Dijak with the move above. There were big moves and convoluted strikes from the start. Then they slowed it down some before going into a big finishing sequence. The match wasn't that bad, but there was no story to this and no one played to any of their strengths. Riddle, the smallest of all of them, threw around the bigger guys like nothing and the bigger guys did more bumping than Riddle did. The size differences weren't played up. Neither Lee or Dijak really even bothered to try and play the monsters here. Lots of cool moves, lots of ugly moves, but that's about it. I really think in theory they have a really good match in them too. Like most of the show, this was highlight reel wrestling.

Penta El Zero M vs Matt Sydal
Ah Penta El Zero M, the worst name in all of pro wrestling. Super Penta(I really like this one), Penta Killer, Killer Ninja, Hexagon, hell even Penta Ninja would be better names. But hey, I can assure you, there are no other Penta El Zero M's out there, so he gets points for uniqueness.

Penta got the win with a running package piledriver after a spinning Canadian Destroyer. The match was all slaps on the chest at first, morphed into some matwork and then went to the big moves and highflying. Some cool moves but even the more dangerous spots made me yawn since we've seen about 400 of them already. One of the more tame matches of the night and atleast they tried to get a story of some sort going.

Jonah Rock vs Zack Sabre Jr.

The finish
Zack Sabre Jr. beat Jonah Rock with an out of nowhere triangle into an armbar. The match went on too long and didn't have the heat for how long it went. The crowd is so trained at this point to respond to flips and big moves, that they have no idea what to do if matches don't contain those.The roles were kind of weird here too, at least to me. There's almost no reason for Jonah to be the face here when you have someone like Zack, but that's what happened.

The work overall was pretty good, but they got a little lost from how long it went. You could have easily cut off 10 minutes to this and it would have been a lot better, because they had no idea what to do with the extra time anyway. I thought Jonah looked good here and Zack was good for the most part, but he oversells and the wrestling fan just isn't trained to recognize that an out of nowhere submission can get you the win due to how infrequently it happens. That's a shame since that's exactly how real fights go. Jonah reminds me a lot of a Taras Bulba(who I like a lot) and it's a shame he isn't a few inches taller, because WWE would definitely be all over him.  Rating: ***

Flamita vs Ricochet

"We should ban aprons." - PWG announcer

Ricochet beat Flamita with a high angle flatliner. I don't even know if I can call this "wrestling". This match honestly more resembled one of the floor routines at the Olympics than an actual wrestling match. Very little selling. Very little realism. Very little making it seem like someone was trying to win a match. Just moves. If the crowd would have held up signs with "10" on them, it wouldn't have even been out of place. The announcers also really hurt the match, exposing the apron moves and making it clear that it was more of a trope that has to be done in a match than to have any value.

Overall thoughts: I knew what I was getting into here, but in a lot of ways this was even worse. So many flips, so many dangerous moves and very little meaning behind any of it. This promotion and these people are just so lost as to what they are doing and why and I'm so lost as to how to even try to explain it.

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