Friday, May 29, 2015

RPW High Stakes 2014 Review

Colt Cabana defends his title against Marty Scurll, while The Inner City Machine Guns & The Young Bucks make a huge splash!

As regular followers of my blog may know, I try to look at a number of different wrestling promotions. While most of them are either in North America or Japan, I’ve reviewed a number of wrestling shows from the UK as well. I have already looked at shows from companies such as PROGRESS Wrestling & Preston City Wrestling. Now, I’m going to start looking at RPW, or Revolution Pro Wrestling. I’ve heard a lot of people talking about some of their bigger shows from 2014, so I decided to give them a look, starting off with this show from March of 2014. Let’s see how things turned out!

RPW High Stakes 2014
London, England 3/15/14

1.) Jay Lethal vs. Josh Bodom: ***1/4
The show kicks off with ROH regular Jay Lethal (about a month before he would the ROH World TV Title, turn heel & join The House of Truth) taking on Josh Bodom. Lethal is channeling a bit of his “Black Machismo” persona tonight. I thought this was a very solid opening match. Pretty entertaining throughout, and the crowd was into it. In the end, Bodom would pick up a huge win over Lethal.

2.) Mark Andrews vs. Sha Samuels: ***
So I actually do have knowledge on Mark Andrews, who made a few appearances for some of the “Wrestling is…” promotions, and is now part of TNA after winning their British Boot Camp TV Show. Really don’t know much about Sha Samuels. This was a pretty solid match. Andrews went after Samuels right at the start, utilizing his high-flying offense. Samuels countered with his power. At one point, Andrews went for a suicide dive to Samuels on the outside, but Samuel got a chair and smashed Andrews in the head with it, causing the match to end in a DQ.

Samuels continues to beat up Andrews after the match. This leads to Terry Frazier coming out, but he attacks Andrews!! Frazier & Samuels continue to attack Andrews, thus officially reforming their tag team, known as The Kartel (from what I can tell, they were a tag team on the British wrestling scene who broke up a few years earlier).

3.) RPW Undisputed British Tag Team Titles – The Swords Of Essex (Paul Robinson & Will Ospreay) vs. The Inner City Machine Guns (Ricochet & Rich Swann): ****½

The Swords Of Essex are a tag team from the UK that I had heard of before (they were actually on the PROGRESS Wrestling Show that I watched a few months ago). Here they’re defending their RPW Undisputed British Tag Team Titles against Ricochet & Rich Swann, who are a tag team that a lot of people are familiar with. I had a feeling that this match was going to be really good, but this far exceeded my expectations. This was just an awesome match!! Lots of insane action, as you would expect. We all know that Ricochet & Swann are a great tag team, but Robinson & Ospreay really showed a lot. Amazing action throughout this match, especially in the closing stretch. Eventually, Ricochet & Swann were able to score the victory over The Swords Of Essex, capturing the RPW Undisputed British Tag Team Titles!! Just an incredible match from start to finish. Go out of your way to see this one!
4.) The Young Bucks vs. Project Ego (Kris Travis & Martin Kirby): ****

It’s a tough task to follow the last match, but if anyone can follow that, it would be The Young Bucks. Here’s they’re facing Project Ego, who are Kris Travis & Martin Kirby (two British wrestlers who I’ve also heard of and I’ve seen before here & there). As you would expect, this was a great match. It didn’t quite match the Inner City Machine Guns/Swords Of Essex match, but it was going to really hard to top that. Really enjoyable stuff here. It’s always going to be a fun match when The Young Bucks are involved. Project Ego showed off a lot here as well. In the end, The Young Bucks would get the win over Travis & Kirby.
5.) El Ligero vs. Sonjay Dutt: ***

It seems like El Ligero is a guy who wrestlers pretty much everywhere in the UK, because I saw him in PROGRESS Wrestling, PCW, and now RPW. For those of you who aren’t familiar, he’s essentially a British version of El Generico. Here, he’s taking on Sonjay Dutt. A fine match here. Solid action between these two. El Ligero would end up getting the win over Dutt.

Before the Main Event, we get an appearance from “The Icon” Sting!! He had recently been released by TNA. He wasn’t wearing his facepaint, and was dressed in street clothes, but that didn’t bother the crowd. They loved The Stinger! He basically cuts a promo putting over the promotion, as well as the Main Event, before leaving.
6.) RPW Undisputed British Heavyweight Title – 30 Minute Iron Fist Match – Colt Cabana vs. Marty Scurll: **¾

An Iron Fist Match is basically an Iron Man Match, but with a slightly different name. The only real difference is that if someone gets knocked out, the match ends immediately. 

You know that Marty Scurll is a heel when Stormtroopers from Star Wars are part of his entrance!! That was really cool. Here, he’s taking on Colt Cabana, who comes into this match as the RPW Undisputed British Heavyweight Champion. These two traded falls back & forth throughout this match. At one point, Scurll used some (seemingly) innovative strategy, by first taping Cabana to one of the ringside barricades to get a fall by countout, and later, taping himself to the ropes, so that he couldn’t get pinned (unfortunately, this exposed him to a beating from Cabana). Cabana would even hit the GTS at one point to score a fall. The match originally ended at a 2-2 tie, but Colt Cabana asked for five more minutes, and that’s what we got!

During this five minute period, the referee got taken out, which led to The Kartel coming out and hitting Cabana with a Spike Piledriver. Cabana would fight off The Kartel members, but Scurll was able to take advantage of the situation, by locking Cabana in the Crossface Chickenwing for the victory and the RPW Undisputed British Heavyweight Title. On the whole, while it had it’s moments, I thought the match was a bit disappointing. It wasn’t a bad match by any means, but it barely reached the level of being good. I think there were a number of things that just didn’t work out well in this match, and it made for a disappointing Main Event.

Overall: 8.0/10

This was my first RPW show, and I thought that it was a pretty good one. While the show only had six matches, the quality of these matches was, for the most part, really good. We had two solid opening matches (even though one of them ended in a DQ). The Swords of Essex vs. Inner City Machine Guns was a fantastic match that stole the show, and we also saw another great tag team contest with The Young Bucks vs. Project Ego. El Ligero vs. Sonjay Dutt was entertaining, and we got an appearance from Sting! Despite the awesome entrance from Marty Scurll, the Main Event was actually the worst match on the show (and the only match that did not hit *** or higher). If you’re looking to get into Revolution Pro Wrestling, I’d say this show is a really good place to start.

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