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Manhattan, New York – April 19, 2011
Earlier tonight, Jon Moxley walked into the arena with a rolling suitcase! This is Moxley’s last night on the independent circuit before reporting to FCW.
Rob Naylor and Austin Aries are on commentary.
MATCH #1: Shiima Xion (0-0) vs. Jimmy Jacobs (4-2)
Xion immediately taunts Jacobs with slaps to the face and pays for it. Jacobs unloads on Xion and stomps a mudhole in him. He did not however, walk it dry. Even so Xion takes a powder, but Jacobs follows him out with a suicide dive. Jacobs tries to whip Xion into the entrance ramp but Xion leaps onto it and jumps off with an Asai Moonsault. Back in the ring they trade momentum back and forth several times, with both guys landing some big moves. Jacobs goes for the Contra Code but Xion avoids it so Jacobs hits the fallaway Ace Crusher instead. Xion catches Jacobs with a spinebuster and a superkick, but then runs right into a spear. Jacobs covers for two. He goes for the Ace Crusher again but Xion catches him in a Crossface. Jacobs escapes and goes for the End Time but Xion escapes and traps Jacobs in a La Magistral cradle to get the upset pin at 7:19. These two worked well together and that was a good opener.
Larry Legend gets in the ring to ask Xion how I felt to get that win. Xion says that he used Jacobs as a stepping stone and it’s safe to say that he’s arrived. Has he been in EVOLVE since this show? He then insults Jacobs’s manhood.
Backstage – Jigsaw and Frightmare are walking and talking when they run into Akira Tozawa. Frightmare and Tozawa yell at each other, and then nothing happens. Okay then.
MATCH #2: Silas Young (1-1) vs. Tony Nese (0-1)
They lock up fiercely and this one is fast and furious from the get-go. Nese hits a unique suplex for a two-count and keeps up the offensive pressure. He goes for a Frog Splash but Young moves out of the way. Young grabs Nese in a fisherman’s buster for two. He talks trash and Nese kicks him in the head from a supine position. Nese tries to build momentum but Young kicks his head off for a two-count. Young goes for a suplex but Nese flips out of it and lands a couple of kicks. Nese unleashes a flurry of offense, including a running knee to the face in the corner for two. Young comes back and tries a tornado DDT but Nese blocks it and kicks him in the face. Nese follows with a super hurricanrana for two. They trade strikes and Young is able to grab Nese in the Finlay Roll. Young follows with the Pee Gee Waja Plunge to get the win at 5:39. They certainly made the most out of what little time they got.
Larry Legend gets a word with Silas Young, who says he is building momentum. Young also calls out Johnny Gargano, and says he’s coming for him. Meanwhile, Larry Dallas and Reby Sky are watching the show from the VIP section.
Backstage – Austin Aries is lacing his boots and mentally preparing for tonight’s main event against a departing Jon Moxley.
MATCH #3: Johnny Gargano (4-2) vs. Jon Davis (0-0)
Both men are cautious in the early going, with Davis looking to assert his power advantage and Gargano trying to keep him on the mat. Gargano hits a double stomp off the second rope and then a neckbreaker. Davis comes right back with a big shoulderblock to send Gargano to the apron. Gargano comes back in with the slingshot spear and then hits a somersault senton. He then runs right into a hard powerslam. Davis goes to work now, using hard strikes and power moves to keep Gargano down. He focuses on the back, which is good strategy to set up for his signature move. Gargano fights back with a kick to the head and the mini Ace Crusher for two. Davis ducks a clothesline and hits one of his own for a near-fall. Gargano comes back with a modified Tarantula and then an enziguiri. He goes for the Superman Spear again but this time Davis catches him and tries a powerbomb, but Gargano counters to a rana. That sends Davis to the floor and Gargano follows him out with a suicide dive. Gargano follows with a somersault senton off the apron and then one off the entrance ramp. Back in the ring Gargano goes up top but jumps right into a spinebuster. Davis follows with the Jackhammer for a near-fall. He goes for a running powerslam but Gargano slips out and gets a victory roll for two. Gargano follows with a crucifix for two and then tries a sunset flip but Davis powers out of it. Davis charges into a boot in the corner and Gargano hits him with an Ace Crusher off the second rope. Gargano hits a kick to the face and the Diced Bread for two. He locks on the Gargano Escape, but Davis finds a way out using his power, but Gargano hangs on and reapplies the hold for the submission win at 13:19. That was an excellent styles clash and a great debut for Davis.
Larry Dallas and Reby Sky join the ring to celebrate with Gargano. Since Jimmy Jacobs lost earlier, Gargano is now the wins leader in EVOLVE with five. Larry Dallas asks him how it feels. Gargano says he will be the sole wins leader, but Dallas wants him to share the lead with his other charge, Chuck Taylor. Speak of the devil, Taylor makes his way out but does nothing.
For more info please visit www.EVOLVEWrestling.com.
MATCH #4: CHIKARA Sekigun (2-0) vs. Façade & Jason Gory (0-0)
Frightmare and Jigsaw are representing CHIKARA Sekigun tonight. Jigsaw and Façade start the match with some fast paced back-and-forth. Façade gets an advantage and tags Gory, and Jigsaw responds by tagging Frightmare. Gory is noticeably better than Façade. The pace of the match is incredibly quick in the early going. Jigsaw and Frightmare knock Façade and Gory to the floor and wipe them out with dives. Back in the right Frightmare covers Gory for two. The CHIKARA duo keeps up the onslaught, working Gory over in their half of the ring. Gory comes back with a leg-trap DDT. Façade gets the hot tag and he delivers his sloppy offense. He would have been perfect in Special K. The referee loses control and bodies are flying all over the ring. Somewhere in all the madness Jigsaw is able to trap Gory in a spinning Jig N Tonic for the win at 8:36. That was decent thanks to the CHIKARA boys.
Larry Dallas gets a word with the winners, who are now 3-0 in the tag team division. They say they’re the best team in EVOLVE and they issue an open challenge to any team in the business.
Backstage – Jon Moxley is warming up for his last match on the Indies against Austin Aries in tonight’s main event.
MATCH #5: Sami Callihan (2-1) vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. (0-0)
Jimmy Jacobs has replaced Aries on commentary as Callihan and Sabre tear into each other. Callihan of course wins the initial striking contest and throws Sabre around the ring. The fight spills to the apron and the floor, and Sabre hits a running kick to the chest. Callihan sweeps Sabre’s legs out from under him. They take the fight up to the stage and Sabre goes for an arm submission, which Callihan reverses to the Stretch Muffler. Back down on the floor Callihan hits an exploder suplex (not a uranage suplex like some would have you believe). Back in the ring Callihan goes to work until Sabre comes back with some Johnny Saint-like offense into another cross armbreaker and Callihan reaches the ropes. Sabre goes right back to the arm, also attacking Callihan’s fingers. That’s awfully specific. Sabre even finds a way to work on the legs at the same time. He’s very efficient. Callihan fights back with hard strikes and Sabre gives it right back to him. They trade strikes for a bit and then Sabre lands a kick to the head and a sitout powerbomb (not a Liger Bomb like some would have you believe) for two. Sabre hits a running kick to the face in the corner and then a double stomp to the arm. Callihan responds with a couple of kicks and a Back Drop Driver. He hits another Back Drop Driver and a diving forearm for just a one-count! Now they trade pinning combinations but neither can get a three-count yet. Sabre locks on the Cross Armbreaker but Callihan reverses to the Stretch Muffler and Sabre is able to break out of it and hit a running kick to the chest for two. He tries another kick but Callihan catches it and locks on the Stretch Muffler with kicks to the head for the win at 11:44. For that style of hard-hitting and little-selling, this was a very entertaining match. I wonder why Sabre hasn’t been back.
Larry Legend tries to ask Callihan how he feels, but Callihan commandeers the microphone and says 2011 is his year. Callihan also gives a shout-out to his friend Jon Moxley.
WWN Live is the new home of iPPV for Dragon Gate USA, EVOLVE, and Full Impact Pro. Remember FIP?
Jon Davis Interview
Larry Legend brings out Jon Davis for an interview. Davis says the last year of his career has been rough. He apologizes for letting down the fans that chanted for him tonight, and says that it will not happen again.
MATCH #6: AR Fox (1-0) vs. Rich Swann (0-1)
I expect a lot of high flying maneuvers to be on display in this one. They waste no time in making that easy prediction true. Swann takes the first control outside the ring with a moonsault off the stage. Back in the ring Swann gets a two-count. Fox fights back with some forearms and tries an Ace Crusher but Swann blocks it by landing on his hands. That’s pretty awesome. Swann then hits a superkick and the somersault into a standing frog splash for another near-fall. Swann comes back with a flying Iron Sheik (is that a thing?) and Thugbait for two. Swann rolls to the floor and Fox follows him out with a dive. Back in the ring Fox gets a two-count. Fox goes to the second rope and Swann kicks him in the head and hits a leaping hurricanrana (not a leaping enziguiri like some would have you believe). Swann follows with a Swann Star Press for two. Fox comes back with a Hiroshi Hase like Northern Lights Suplex for two. Swann responds with a stunner and a Pele kick for two. He tries the standing 450 splash but Fox gets his knees up. Fox finishes Swann off with the Lo Mein Pain at 6:00. That was quite the exhibition of awesome high flying moves there.
Larry Legend asks Fox how he’s feeling, and of course he’s feeling great to be 2-0 in EVOLVE.
Backstage – Shiima Xion, Façade, and Jason Gory are hanging out backstage. Xion wants tot celebrate, but Gory and Façade don’t really seem up for it since they lost.
MATCH #7: Chuck Taylor (4-2) vs. Akira Tozawa (0-0)
They take it down to the mat right away, as both men have a lot on the line here. Tozawa is one step ahead in the opening minutes, hitting a hard senton for two. He keeps Taylor down and hits another senton for another two-count. Taylor fights back with a nice dropkick. He keeps Tozawa on the mat now, using a headscissors. Tozawa fights back with a series of chops but runs into a powerslam for a two-count. Taylor runs right into a low dropkick, and Tozawa follows with a boot to the face that sends him to the floor. Tozawa follows up with a suicide dive, but when he tries the second one Taylor cuts him off and sends him to the floor. Taylor then hits a slingshot dive, and when he tries another one Tozawa cuts HIM off and hits his second dive. Back in the ring Tozawa hits a running forearm and a Back Drop Driver for two. Tozawa tries the diving headbutt but misses twice and Taylor kicks him in the chest the third time. Taylor hits a uranage slam and a kick to the chest (not the head). He follows up with Sole Food but Tozawa shows fighting spirit and hits a hurricanrana and a kick to the back of the head. Both men are down. Back on their feet they trade forearms and then up the ante to running Yakuza kicks. Tozawa hits the bridging German Suplex for two. He hits a release German Suplex next but Taylor pops up and hits a superkick. Taylor then lands the Awful Waffle to get the pin at 10:34. That was a little hard to keep up with, and one of the better Taylor matches I’ve seen in a while. I <3 Tozawa.
Who is the Wins Leader?
Larry Dallas, Reby Sky, and Johnny Gargano all get in the ring to celebrate. The referee announces that Taylor and Gargano will have to wrestle each other in a tiebreaker after the next match. Larry Dallas doesn’t want it to happen and says it’s cool to share. Taylor doesn’t want to share, and he wants the match to happen RIGHT NOW.
MATCH #8: Johnny Gargano (5-2) vs. Chuck Taylor (5-2)
Taylor hits a couple of kicks right away and gets a quick rollup for two. Gargano goes for the Gargano Escape but can’t cinch it in so he hits the Hurts Donut instead but only gets two! Taylor hits the Awful Waffle but can’t cover right away and Gargano is able to kick out. Gargano comes back with an enziguiri, the You’re Dead, and two superkicks. He hits a second Hurts Donut but Taylor kicks out again! Gargano locks on the Gargano Escape again, and Sky throws in the towel to give Gargano the win at 2:31. That wasn’t much of a match but knowing it leads to a rematch actually makes this make sense.
Larry Legend gets a word with Gargano, who brags about being 6-2. Gargano says that “Chuck Screwed Chuck.” He’s proud of being the Wins Leader in EVOLVE.
Backstage – Zack Sabre, Jr. and Sami Callihan reflect on their match tonight. They have mutual respect and shake hands and agree to have another match somewhere down the line. It’s not often I look forward to Callihan matches, but that would be one of them.
MATCH #9: Austin Aries (1-0) vs. Jon Moxley (1-1)
They take it to the mat and trade holds right away. Moxley lands a back suplex for a two-count. He goes after the arm and tries the Crossface Chicken Wing but Aries wisely goes to the ropes. Aries avoids a charge in the corner and Moxley tumbles to the floor, and Aries follows him out with the Heat Seeking Missile. Back in the ring Aries hits the slingshot senton and the Power Drive Elbow for one. Aries starts going after the leg. Moxley fights back with shots to the head and then suplexes Aries to the floor. Both of them tumble out and Moxley may have injured his leg. Even so he gets back in the ring with Aries and levels him with a clothesline. Moxley hits an Ace Crusher from out of nowhere for two. He follows with a brainbuster (more of a vertical suplex) for another two-count. Aries responds with his own Brainbuster for two. He goes up top and Moxley joins him to deliver a superplex and Aries cradles his legs on the mat for a two-count. Moxley hits a piledriver for two. He hits a Cradle Piledriver for another two-count when Aries gets his foot on the bottom rope. Moxley goes outside the ring and grabs a wrench but decides not to use it. Aries rolls him up for two, and then this the kick to the face and the Brainbuster for a two-count. He goes up top and hits a cross body block but Moxley rolls through for two. Moxley locks on a Fujiwara Armbar, and then turns it into the Last Chancery! Aries escapes and drills Moxley with a kick to the head and then locks on the Last Chancery, which Jacobs admits is a very painful move. Moxley escapes and they trade forearms. Aries hits the shinbreaker/belly-to-back suplex combination. He follows up with the IED and another Brainbuster. Aries goes up and hits the 450 splash but Moxley kicks out! Moxley grabs a quick inside cradle for two. Aries responds with another IED and then two more. He hits another kick to the top of the head and tries the Brainbuster but Moxley slips out and unloads with strikes. Moxley tries a sunset flip but Aries kneels down and cradles the legs to send Moxley out of EVOLVE with a record of 1-2 at 15:17. That was a good back and forth battle and Moxley’s desperation to go out with a win made the match feel more important.
Moxley cuts a promo, thanking the crowd and putting Aries over for the match. AR Fox, Zack Sabre, Sami Callihan, Jigsaw, and Rich Swann come out and join him in a toast. The crowd shows appreciation to him. For some reason Callihan has to get on the mic and swear a lot to put over his friend.
Backstage – Larry Dallas, Reby Sky, Johnny Gargano, and Chuck Taylor are arguing loudly. Gargano runs into Silas Young, who gives him the stink eye.
BONUS MATCH: FIP World Heavyweight Title Match – Jon Moxley vs. Roderick Strong, FIP Southern Stampede 2010, 4.17.10
This was in Crystal River, FL. The title has been vacant since March 22, when former Champion Davey Richards signed an exclusive deal with Ring of Honor. For some reason Kizarny was in the ring and Moxley came out to attack him, which drew Strong out to start the match.
Strong, a former two-time Champion already, takes the fight to Moxley in the ring and on the floor. Moxley fights back and jaw-jacks with the crowd while putting the boots to Strong. They trade momentum back and forth several times in the early going as they try to establish dominance. Moxley knocks Strong off the apron and takes control with his unorthodox offense, going to work on the arm. He even uses the Regal Stretch, which is cool. Strong fights back with an enziguiri. He unloads with offense, hitting a Falcon Arrow for two. He hits his first backbreaker for another two-count. Strong puts on the Stronghold but Moxley is able to grab the ropes. Moxley counters a half-nelson backbreaker with a sidewalk slam for two. Strong grabs a couple of quick pinning combinations for two-counts, and then Moxley cuts him off with a DDT for a near-fall. Moxley throws Strong up into the air and then levels him with a clothesline for two. Strong avoids the Chicken Wing and is able to knock Moxley down from the top rope. He drills him with a kick to the head and brings him down with a superplex. Both men are down. They get back to their feet and trade strikes. Strong hits the gutbuster and goes for the Tiger Driver but Moxley counters with a jackknife cradle for two, and then Strong hits a vicious Sick Kick for two. He goes for the Stronghold again but Moxley counters with a small package for a two-count. Strong hits a leg cradle backbreaker for two. Erick Stevens makes his way out, allowing Moxley to hit the Hook and Ladder. Moxley locks on the Crossface Chicken Wing and Strong taps out at 15:34! The finish was weak, especially if you weren’t following FIP at the time (and really, who was?), but the match was tons of fun and I’m sad I won’t get to see them wrestle again anytime soon.
This is the usual almost six-minute highlight reel from the show. There certainly were plenty of highlights to choose from.
The Pulse: With five of the nine matches at three stars or higher (and a bonus match that gets there as well), this is another good show from the EVOLVE crew. Moxley’s last match is a good one, and the post-match is a nice, humanizing moment for a guy who usually seems so bizarre. Like most EVOLVE shows this one had a little something for everyone, which is one of the promotion’s strongest attributes. You can purchase this show at the DGUSA Store.