Beyond wraps up their signature series with a rematch of one of their most-talked about matches from 2020, as Matt Makowski and Chris Dickinson see who’ll win the Greatest Rivals Round Robin.
A Very Good Professional Wrestler pinned Robo in 10:21 (***½)
No Disqualification: Slade submitted Matthew Justice in 14:44 (***¼)
Randy Summers & Brandon Watts pinned Solo Darling & Willow Nightingale in 9:49 to win the Tournament for Tomorrow 2021 (***¼)
Matt Makowski submitted Chris Dickinson in 13:58 to win the Greatest Rivals Round Robin Series (****½)
We eschew Denver Colorado’s intro as it’s straight to the action. Paul Crockett and Sidney Bakabella are on commentary…
A Very Good Professional Wrestler vs. Robo
We open with a tight lock-up as A Very Good Professional Wrestler was taken into the corner… wash, rinse, and eventually repeat.
A Very Good Professional Wrestler got annoyed and started swinging, but Robo ducked before he got kicked in the arm. A leapfrog from Robo leads to a dropkick on A Very Good Professional Wrestler, before the pair traded elbows, with Robo taking the upper hand. A Very Good Professional Wrestler comes back with an elbow to the gut before a scoop slam from Robo earned a one-count. Another suplex gets Robo a two-count, but A Very Good Professional Wrestler comes back with a football tackle, taking out the leg ahead ahead of a baseball slide for a two-count. An overhead armbar/chinlock combo looks to wear down Robo, before an armdrag has Robo back down ahead of a camel clutch.
Robo stays on his knees though and is able to break the grip relatively quickly, only for A Very Good Professional Wrestler to return with a spinning neckbreaker off the ropes for a two-count. An abdominal stretch followed, with some Danielson-ish elbows being thrown in by A Very Good Professional Wrestler, but Robo powers free and lands a Codebreaker in return. Robo looks for a ‘rana but gets caught with a powerbomb for a two-count, before he was taken to the top rope… A Very Good Professional Wrestler tries to suplex him down, but Robo escapes and returned with a uranage. Right hands keep Robo ahead as he muscles up A Very Good Professional Wrestler for a buckle bomb, before a spear almost won him the match.
A Very Good Professional Wrestler stays on the defensive as an elbow and a boot in the corner left him rocked… he leaps over a Robo charge, then nicks a two-count with a roll-up, before a Gory bomb into the corner gets another near-fall. The pair trade right hands and elbows, but it’s A Very Good Professional Wrestler who pushes on with a series of elbows before he got caught with a headbutt. Robo’s running knee drops A Very Good Professional Wrestler, but he can’t follow up as A Very Good Professional Wrestler climbs the ropes, only to get superkicked. He’s pulled down into a death valley driver attempt, but a nose rake helps A Very Good Professional Wrestler get free ahead of a DDT that gets cradled for the win. A Damn Good Opener. ***½
No Disqualification: Matthew Justice vs. Slade
This was hyped up as attempted murder in the run-up to this show… so that’ll be interesting.
The pair start off going nose-to-nose, throwing right hands at each other, before they spilled outside to fight on the floor instead. Slade’s chucked into the ring apron, before Justice literally threw him outside into the snowy surrounds of the H20 Wrestling Center. A suplex drops Slade on the ground, before they go inside to dismantle the commentary position… or at least remove them of their chairs. Slade’s chucked back into the wall before he reverses a suplex and takes Justice into a pile of chairs. Chairshots follow as Slade then goes for some plunder, finding a door under the ring. Justice stops him with a chair then threw him into the entrance way, where there just happened to be a bin.
We’ve the Attitude Era bin shot to the back as the chaotic feel remained. Justice props the door between the ring and a chair, but he ends up being tossed through it with an Exploder. Yikes. They head back into the ring, where Slade wears out the remnants of the door and a chair on Justice’s back, before he bounced the bin off of Justice’s head. Justice fought back with elbows and chops before a chokeslam put Justice through the bin again for a two-count. The other half of the door’s thrown onto Justice before Slade set the bin up again and bounced Justice off the bottom of it with another chokeslam. My back suddenly hurts. Somehow Justice gets up at two from that, and begins to fight back…
But Slade just wears him out with more chairshots before heading outside for… that’s a goddamn hammer. It’s enough to make Paul Crockett actually drop a F-bomb. Slade uses the hammer to beat a chair into Justice’s head, as the crowd fell silent for a moment. Slade picks Justice up and looks to hammer him into the chair again, but Justice rolls away then slammed Slade onto the open chair. Hey Paul, that F-bomb’s useful right about now…
Slade’s up at two from that, before a Cactus clothesline took both men back outside. Justice returns to the ring for a tope con giro, before he grabbed another table and threw it into the ring. Oh God it’s a plastic table… those usually bounce. Justice bounces the bin off of Slade’s head again, then makes him wear it as Justice went up top and headed Coast to Coast with a flip legdrop. Slade comes up red and kicks out at two, before he had the bin thrown on him once more. Justice goes back up top and hits a splash onto the bin, but Slade still kicks out. Justice grabs a second plastic table from ringside… he sets them both up next to each other as Slade’s draped over them… Justice grabs the hammer and returned the favour from earlier, whacking a chair onto him.
Justice heads up top, but Slade just throws the table at him before resetting for a superplex as both men BOUNCED off the tables in an ugly fashion, but it’s enough for Slade to get another two-count after yet another commentary F-bomb. From there, Slade chokeslams Justice through the table legs for a two-count, then onto the underside of the table before Slade found more plunder. Handcuffs.
Instead of tying up Justice, he cuffs himself up though, so he could choke out Justice… and this was right out of the “so crazy it might work” book, as the self-handcuffed camel clutch actually got the win. I’m not a deathmatch guy, and some of this was perhaps a little overboard, but as a chaotic plunder match, this was wild in every sense. ***¼
Tournament For Tomorrow Final: Milk Chocolate (Brandon Watts & Randy Summers) vs. The Bird And The Bee (Solo Darling & Willow Nightingale)
Milk Chocolate, whose record in Beyond was hardly stellar ahead of this tournament, have been taking shortcuts to get to the final… and they’re up against a team that has a shout for that tag of “tag team aces of Beyond.”
We’ve a jump start for this one, with Nightingale getting awkwardly thrown to the outside as Watts and Summers isolated Darling. A knee-assisted F5 gets Summers an early two-count, before Solo was choked in the ropes by Watts. Summers stays on Solo with some choking before Watts tagged in to help with an assisted back suplex for a two-count. Summers quickly returns for some stomps, before a suplex lands for a one-count. Watts Goomba stomps Solo in the lower back as Milk Chocolate were keeping Darling in their corner. She tries to fight back, decking Summers with a clothesline for a two-count, but Solo ends up back in the wrong corner… she ducks a gamengiri from Watts before catching Summers for a slam in the middle of the ring.
Finally Solo makes the tag out to Nightingale, who POUNCES Watts into the ropes before Summers ran into a head kick and a spinebuster that almost ended things. A Hart Attack off the middle buckle gets Solo a two-count, with Watts making the save and forcing the tag as Darling found herself in a familiar spot. Solo slaps Watts on the top rope and looked to bring him down with a superplex, but Watts slips out and hits a Last Ride for a near-fall. A STF followed in the middle of the ring, but Solo gets to the ropes… she rebounds off them to roll Watts into a crossface… but off-camera the ref’s been pulled out of the ring as Watts was tapping furiously. Summers keeps distracting the referee was Watts heads outside for the milk chocolate powder… eventually throwing some of it into Nightingale’s eyes as she tried to slam him, before Summers and Watts almost nicked the win with a discus lariat.
Nightingale returns with a slam as Solo returned to try and submit Summers with a Sharp Stinger, but Watts pushes Nightingale into Darling to break the hold, before a double team Last Shot ends up getting Milk Chocolate the win. I liked the progression here – they tried to win with the chocolate powder, but when that backfired they were able to win relatively cleanly. Not quite chicken-shit, as Milk Chocolate show they can actually get the job done. ***¼
Greatest Rivals Round Robin: Matt Makowski vs. Chris Dickinson
Winner takes all in this rematch from what many called Beyond’s match of 2020.
After a handshake, we started rather tentatively with Makowski tripping Dickinson to the mat as he looked to take the mount. Dickinson gets back to his feet and looked for a front facelock on Makowski… but that ends up on the mat as Makowski tried to take the mount. He manages to get it, but Dickinson rolled out, looking for a key lock as both men were looking to grab a body part. Going for the leg, Makowski rolls Dickinson down again and swivelled into Dickinson’s back… only for a switch to an armbar to be neutralised as Dickinson gets back to his feet. Dickinson’s kicks are checked, but Makowski found a way through before Dickinson replied in kind. Elbows take Makowski to the ropes, but he ducks a spinning heel kick before hitting one of his own for a quick two-count.
A front facelock from Makowski keeps Dickinson at bay, before some knees and a suplex led to Makowski deftly rolling in for an armbar. Dickinson blocked it as he rolled out into a half crab, breaking it so he could kick and stomp away on Makowski some more. Clubbering shots from above force Makowski to turtle up, so Dickinson rolls him up to his feet for a clothesline, before going back to that half crab. He transitions that into a Sharpshooter, taking Makowski’s free leg… but he couldn’t fully lock it on as Makowski pushed away from the hold.
Makowski tries to fight back with elbows, but Dickinson maintained the upper hand, chopping Makowski into the corner. The focus moves onto Makowski’s arm as Dickinson jarred it over his shoulder, before an Irish whip sees Makowski float over onto the apron before he rolled through the middle ropes and rolled Dickinson into a rear naked choke. Dickinson rolls out into a STF again though, but it ends in the ropes as Makowski blasts back with a mid kick. That rocked Dickinson, who replied in kind as the pair traded those shots to the chest, with increasing frequency before Makowski caught one and spun Dickinson down with a Dragon screw. Dickinson fakes out a kick and tricks Makowski ahead of a rear naked choke, but a back suplex frees Makowski as the pair looked to be spent.
Makowski literally chucks Dickinson with an overhead belly-to-belly, then with a butterfly suplex for a two-count, before a cross armbar looked to force a stoppage… but Dickinson rolled up for a two-count. A rear naked choke’s quickly escaped by Makowski, who just runs into a death driver for a two-count, before he clubbed Makowski into the corner with some elbows. A boot blocks Dickinson’s charge in the corner, as he then had to escape a Torture Rack… Dickinson goes back to the sleeperhold as he then spun Makowski into a piledrive a la Minoru Suzuki… but it’s not enough! Makowski has to fight from underneath again, and surprises Dickinson with an armbar as he countered out of a Pazuzu Bomb… Dickinson rolls free, but is quickly caught with a release German suplex.
Dickinson’s back up, but gets rolled through into a cross armbar… and that’s the submission! A wonderful blend of striking and grappling on display as Makowski picked up perhaps the biggest win in his fledgling wrestling career, making Chris Dickinson tap out as clean as a sheet. This is my indie match of the year so far… and as this result makes them 1-1… when’s the rubber match?! ****½
A no-nonsense show from Beyond, presenting steak with no sizzle – but this steak was done exceptionally well. Yeah, I’m writing this at almost-lunchtime… from the sound opener, to the batshit insane no-DQ match, through to both tournament finals, everything on this show more than delivered, especially considering the lack of fans. Beyond quickly figured out the formula and perfectly executed it on these Signature Series shows – six episodes that are more than worth your six hours!