Saturday, March 31, 2018

WrestleCircus/Pro-Wrestling Revolver Midnight-ish After Mania Review

You thought WrestleMania Weekend was over?! Not so fast!!

WrestleCircus/Pro-Wrestling Revolver Midnight-ish After Mania
Orlando, Florida 4/3/17

In 2016, VIP Wrestling (an independent that I believe is based in the Dallas, Texas area) ran a show following WrestleMania 32 at AT&T Stadium. When 2017 came around, there weren’t official plans for any of the promotions that came to the Orlando area that weekend to run an event after WrestleMania 33. Then, WrestleCircus (a growing independent promotion out of Texas) and Pro-Wrestling Revolver (Sami Callihan’s promotion) decided to put together a cross-promotional event right after the big event in Camping World Stadium. What did we get? Well, let’s find out….

1.) WrestleCircus Ringmaster Title - Brian Cage (with Melissa Santos) vs. Dezmond Xavier: ***1/2

Brian Cage, with Melissa Santos by his side, was representing WrestleCircus here as their Ringmaster Champion (I believe that’s their primary title), while Dezmond Xavier was presumably representing Pro-Wrestling Revolver. This was a super entertaining sprint that went about five minutes or so. Of course, with the match being so short, they had to pack in a ton of action if they wanted to make it exciting. Both men ended up doing a very good job in that regard. Cage ultimately retained his title.

Before the next bout began, Louden Noxious (the former Gavin Loudspeaker from CHIKARA and the ring announcer for WrestleCircus) had a brief interaction with Shawn T (I guess that’s his name?), who was the ring announcer from PWR.

2.) ACH vs. Martin Stone: ***

ACH came out to “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey, which was pretty cool. I’m not exactly sure which promotion these guys are representing. Martin Stone might be a WrestleCircus guy, and I think ACH might represent both? I don’t know. Anyway, this was another entertaining five minute sprint, though it wasn’t quite as good as the opener. ACH would end up getting the win here.

After the match, Martin Stone did some air guitar stuff with ACH before he shook his hand.

3.) “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin vs. Shane Strickland: ***3/4

This was easily the best match on this card. Despite being tired from working several matches over the course of this crazy weekend in Orlando, both men really put forth effort in this one. There was some exciting action throughout, as Elgin showed off his power while Strickland used his speed and athleticism to his advantage. There was actually a botch with the ring bell towards the end of the bout (I think it was prematurely rung before the match actually ended), but they kept going, and Elgin managed to pick up the win.

4.) WrestleCircus Lady Of The Ring Title - Rachael Ellering vs. Angel Rose: **3/4

As the name (obviously) implies, the Lady Of The Ring Title is the WrestleCircus Women’s Title. Rachael Ellering came into this match as the champion, and successfully defended it against Angel Rose, who (at the time) had recently rose to prominence as a member of the newly reformed LAX in TNA/Impact Wrestling. This was a relatively decent bout. They ended up using some famous finishers at one point (such as the Stone Cold Stunner, The People’s Elbow, attempts at hitting the Pedigree). There really isn’t much else to say about this one. It was fine for what it was.

After the match ended, Angel Rose raised the hand of Rachael Ellering in a sign of respect.

Before the next bout, we got another verbal interaction between two ring announcers, and they seemed to be antagonizing each other.

5.) Mixed Tag Team Match - Sami Callihan & Jessicka Havok vs. The World’s Cutest Tag Team (Joey Ryan & Candice LeRae): ***1/4

I don’t have too many thoughts on this particular matchup. It was a relatively entertaining mixed tag team bout that featured a fair amount of comedy (which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, considering some of the participants involved). There was some solid wrestling as well, and the bout proved to be fun for what it was. Joey Ryan & Candice LeRae would score the win here.

6.) Jake Manning (with Samantha Heights) vs. Leva Bates: *

Before the match began, Manning took the mic, and mockingly asked the fans if they enjoyed WrestleMania 33. He said that his favorite part was when the women weren’t wrestling on the show, and this of course got booes. Manning then complained about the fact that a black woman (Naomi) won a title on the biggest show of the year. He said the only thing women are good for is “making his sheets warm” (oof). Manning then turned his attention to Leva Bates, and he said that he felt sorry for her. It was “past her bedtime”, Manning claimed, and added that he has no idea how Bates was going to do her chores in the morning. Well, I think it’s fair to say that Manning turned his misogynist character all the way up to eleven here.

Then, Leva Bates came out cosplaying as Sgt. Slaughter. Once the match finally got going, it wasn’t very good at all. It was easily the worst on this show. Manning accidentally took out Heights at the start, but he still managed to win. Bates then cut a Sgt. Slaughter style promo on Manning afterwards. This was pretty bad.

7.) Eight-Man Tag - Team WrestleCircus (Johnny Mundo, Sammy Guevara, & Extra Talented [Aaron Solow, Ricky Starks]) vs. Team Pro-Wrestling Revolver (Dave Crist, Curt Stallion, David Starr, & Zachary Wentz): ***1/4

After that Jake Manning/Leva Bates fiasco, we finally got back to some actual wrestling. Jake Crist was supposed to be in this match, but he apparently got sun poisoning (probably during the FIP event, which was outdoors, earlier in the day), so Curt Stallion took his spot. Johnny Mundo was playing his “Boone The Bounty Hunter” character here. Aaron Solow cut a promo before the match began, calling the PWR team a bunch of “Nickelback rejects”. He then added that they (I guess he’s referring to himself and Starks) have been “all over the network”, and are future Hall Of Famers. Solow then talked about he and Starks are teaming with a “movie star” in Boone The Bounty Hunter. This ended up being a pretty entertaining eight-man tag. There was some good wrestling throughout, but they also threw in some comedy. They did this skit in the middle of the match where Boone The Bounty Hunter found “contraband” on Zachary Wentz. Then, JT Davidson got hit with this “mysterious powder” and went crazy (I’m pretty sure it’s implied that it was cocaine, but it was probably just that powder that’s used all the time in wrestling matches). He put himself through two tables, and I think he gave everyone a spinebuster. The match came to an end when Boone The Bounty Hunter & Sammy Guevara hit Curt Stallion with a Double Spanish Fly off the top rope to win the match for Team WrestleCircus. This was certainly wacky, but it was a ton of fun to watch from start to finish.

Afterwards, Boone The Bounty Hunter “arrested” Zachary Wentz.

8.) WrestleCircus Sideshow Title/PWR Scramble Title - Scramble Match: ***

So this match is for both the WrestleCircus Sideshow Title (the midcard title in that promotion) and the PWR Scramble Title, which is usually defended in this kind of match. The format of this one basically followed the Royal Rumble formula. Two participants started, and there was a new entrant every thirty seconds. Eliminations occurred via pinfall or submission. The participants in the match included AR Fox, Caleb Konley, Tessa Blanchard, Palmer, Scorpio Sky, Jordan Lennox, Willie Mack, Lio Rush, Mr. 450, Rickey Shane Page, Davey Vega, Mascarita Dorada, Jeremiah, Trey Miguel, Andy Dalton, Suicide, and Jason Cade, who was the defending PWR Scramble Champion after winning it from AR Fox in a crazy multi-man Ladder Match at the Pancakes & Piledrivers event earlier in the weekend. As for the Sideshow Title, this was for the vacant title, as the previous title holder was….reddit (yes, you read that correctly). Anyway, this was one giant clusterf*ck, but for what it was, it was mostly fine. We did get some cool moments sprinkled throughout, such as AR Fox, Jason Cade, & Mr. 450 eliminated Willie Mack, Suicide, & Trey Miguel respectively with simultaneous 450 splashes. Eventually, it came down to AR Fox vs. Jason Cade, and AR Fox got the win to capture both titles.

AR Fox took the mic after the match. He said that he’s so proud of this weekend, and added that this (I believe he’s referring to all of the independent shows that took place over ‘Mania Weekend) is what pro-wrestling is really about. Fox said that these two companies define what wrestling is today, and proclaimed that titles he just earned are true championships. He promised to wear them proudly, but was then interrupted by Moose. He brought up that AR Fox just said that he’d defend his title anywhere and against anyone, and wanted a shot right now! Without hesitation, Fox accepted, and we have one more match!

9.) WrestleCircus Sideshow Title/PWR Scramble Title - AR Fox vs. Moose: ***

This was a wild sprint that featured some fun action throughout. It wasn’t quite as good as some of the sprints we saw earlier, but it was still enjoyable to watch, despite being so short. AR Fox would ultimately get the win to retain his title.

Afterwards, AR Fox & Moose shook hands. Fox then took the mic, and thanked the fans once again for coming out. He also told the fans to keep supporting both promotions. Sami Callihan came out and said basically the same thing, before telling everyone to leave so they could take the ring down before the venue kicked them out.

Overall: 7.0/10

For a show that came about on such short notice, it proved to be pretty entertaining, for the most part. Aside from one noticeable hiccup (Jake Manning vs. Leva Bates), most of the matches on this show were pretty solid, with Michael Elgin vs. Shane Strickland and Brian Cage vs. Dezmond Xavier being the standouts. I’m not sure what the viability is of an independent show right after WrestleMania in the future, but as this show proved, people will show up.

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