Fight Club: PRO were back in Wolverhampton for the second part of their long weekend, and the final part of their “Pulp Fixxion” shows.
The show featured the same crew as night one, with an intergender match thrown in for good measure.
Dan Moloney vs. Shane Strickland
During his entrance, Moloney bullied a fan for money… and got it. He also got more taunts towards his boots, since Shane had seen Fire Ant’s stuff last night. Moloney then left in disgust as the crowd struggled to hold a coherent chant, and took his sweet time in returning to the ring as Joel Allen exercised the best part of a 20-count.
When they got going, Strickland took the upperhand with a sequence that took Moloney to the outside, in perfect place for a PK on the apron… only to be dragged down to the floor. Moloney tried to hit back, but accidentally connected with the ringpost before throwing Strickland into the opposite post. More chops laid out Strickland as he continued to troll Moloney’s boots, but the Lucha Underground star made a comeback as he caught Moloney with a suplex and a corner dropkick.
Moloney popped up and hit Strickland with a pump kick as he went up top, with Moloney eventually handing a belly to belly overhead superplex. An Exploder followed as Dan got a near-fall, before a jumping thrust kick knocked Moloney back into the corner, where he fell to a roll-up Ace crusher for a near-fall, with Moloney just getting his foot on the rope in time.
Strickland again peppered Moloney with kicks, before a ‘rana was caught and turned into a spinning sit-out powerbomb for the win. Another impressive showing from Moloney, who’s now 2-0 in this weekender. ***¼
Kay Lee Ray vs. Nixon Newell
An opening collar-and-elbow tie-up sequence set the tone early on as Wales and Scotland’s finest worked a series of pinfalls, including a rarely-seen back-and-forth backslide that was countered into a Gory special that turned into a sunset flip for another near-fall.
Frustrated, Kay Lee brought out Kimber Lee from the back to take her place… so Nixon brought out a barely-changed Shane Strickland back out, and we had an impromptu dance-off between the Washington-state natives. Ending with referee Shay Purser dabbing. To some, that’d have tipped off his then-pending heel turn in Attack…
After everyone had their arms raised, a wrestling match broke out again, with Kay Lee and Nixon trading kicks, then an endless array of topes before they exchanged stiff chops outside the ring. Those gunshot-sounding chops continued, with Ray and Newell removing their extraneous ring gear for extra effect, before they returned to the ring.
Referee Shay got involved, sweeping Newell’s legs out to help her drop Kay Lee with a stunner for a near-fall. A Shining Wizard misses, as Kay Lee tries to get back into the match, but she misses a springboard kick and eats a forearm… then delivers a receipt before both women connect at once. More back and forth leads to Newell teasing the Welsh Destroyer, only for Ray to reverse it into a Gory Bomb, but Newell escapes and hits a bridging fallaway slam for another near-fall. An enziguiri-knee from Kay Lee leads to a Gory bomb, but again we get a kick-out as Nixon kicked out at two, before Ray misses a senton bomb, then rolling through a Welsh Destroyer and landing a PK for another near-fall.
Newell responded with a sick headbutt, then finally succeeded with the Destroyer for the win. That was something… the wackiness of the dance-off, and the intense finishing sequence, this as a hell of an outing. ***½
Travis Banks vs. Fire Ant
Travis Banks search for a win continued here, and he started off trading wristlocks and headlocks with his insectoid opponent. They remained extremely even, with Banks catching himself on a springboard off the middle rope that led to him rolling up Fire Ant for a near-fall in the opening minutes.
Banks grounded the Ant with a headlock, and ground down as he tried to push free. When the Ant did free himself, he worked Banks into an Octopus hold that flipped into some headscissors before the pair traded some chops. Then forearms. Then a mixture. Who knew ants had forearms?
A kick to the head stopped Banks in his tracks, before he returned the favour and sent the Ant outside in perfect position for a tope! Back inside, Banks laid into Fire Ant with a clothesline, then squashed him against the bottom turnbuckle with a cannonball. I need to try that next summer when we get ants… see if it’s as effective!
The pair jockeyed for position for a suplex, with counter-after-counter, until they hit a German on each other, with Banks’ suplex bridging up for a near-fall. Banks got caught on the top rope by Ant, who followed with an enziguiri and a ‘rana off the top that sent Banks almost into the opposite corner. The Kiwi hit back by blocking a PK and sweeping the Ant’s leg, but a missed crossbody out of the corner proved to be crucial as Ant hit back with a tiltawhirl into a DDT, before a somersault plancha took Banks down on the outside.
Back inside, Fire Ant climbed the ropes and landed a huge crossbody off the top, before Banks reversed a brainbuster for a near-fall. Another roundhouse out of the corner got Banks a two-count as Ant got a foot on the ropes, but Ant hulked up after taking some punches, before landing a Superman punch. Banks hit back with a forearm for another two-count, but Fire Ant shocked him as he went for a brainbuster, pulling off an inside cradle for the win. That was not a popular result, as Banks remains in search of his first win. Great match and even better storytelling. ***¾
Chris Brookes vs. Kimber Lee
Before the match, Brookes addressed the fact that Kimber Lee beat him during the CHIKARA UK tour earlier this year… and blamed it on “being struck by Cupid’s arrow”. He let Kimber Lee beat him because he had a soft spot… and suggested that instead of wrestling in the ring, they wave off the match and indulge in another kind of wrestling instead. Kimber’s answer was to give him a roundhouse kick and start by laying in forearms in the corner.
Brookes shoved away Kimber and kicked her in the knee, before she replied with a tiltawhirl slam… then a series of chops to Tipton’s finest. They ducked chops from each other, before Kimber won out, then drop him with a jawbreaker. This was shockingly one-sided, as Kimber gets a near-fall from a double knee strike in the corner, before knocking Brookes outside with a bicycle kick.
That led to the tide turning as Brookes kicked Kimber to block a dive, then landed a knee drop for just a one-count. A grounded armbar sees Brookes keep up the pressure, as Kimber’s fight back ends with a back elbow for a cocky, Chris Jericho-circa-1997 cover. A headbutt knocks down Kimber Lee as Brookes then pulled her up into a camel clutch for a wet willie… but Kimber blocked it and turned the tables to finger his ear instead. Enraged, Brookes got his wet willie before blasting Kimber with a pump kick that she shrugged off to reply with a German suplex.
Kimber continued the onslaught with a cross body to the outside as Brookes rolled to the floor, before hitting a senton bomb off the top for another near-fall. Another German suplex followed as Brookes bounded off the ropes, as Kimber hit a trio of rolling Germans, then a bridging German for another two, but Brookes fought back, only to see a Michinoku driver attempt rolled up for another two for the American.
Brookes countered with a flurry of kicks for a near-fall, only to run into a pop-up powerbomb as Kimber came closer to a shock result. A superkick cut-off Kimber Lee’s charge, as Brookes followed with a rope-assisted swinging neckbreaker for another near-fall, before switching into the double chicken-wing for an instant tap-out. I’m not usually a fan of intergender matches, but this avoided a lot of the violent stuff that makes those matches a turn-off to the wider audience. This was a surprisingly good match for my eyes… ***½
Mikey Whiplash vs. Clint Margera
This wasn’t billed as no-disqualification, but Margera’s Fight Club: PRO outings to date have been violent… and Whiplash has a reputation for, shall we say, not caring about giving or receiving pain in his matches.
They opened up by trading forearms back and forth, and my God they sounded stiff. Increasingly so. Eventually, Margera clotheslined Whiplash to the floor, where he sent Whippy into a handily-placed ladder, before the favour was returned as Margera was thrown into the warehouse’s wall.
Referee Joel Allen gave a lot of leeway here, as Whiplash threw a metal bin onto Margera, who replied by suplexing him onto the floor – just as one fan screamed “tell us what’s happening!” Whippy then took an Irish whip into a row of chairs, side-on, but Margera failed to keep on top of the Stoke native, as Whiplash returned the favour, hurling him into some more chairs.
With Whiplash setting up a pile of chairs in the ring, the pair went to fight on the apron, trading forearm shots, before Margera leapt back inside and shoved Whippy off the apron and back into the front row. A somersault plancha followed next as Margera seemed to be intent on stopping Whippy from returning to the ring when he wanted to.
When Margera decided to take the action back inside, he scored a near-fall from an uppercut, before ducking a rebound lariat, only to take a lariat to the back of the head instead. Margera recovered by stacking two chairs on top of each other, only to see a tornado DDT attempt turned into a death valley driver on the metal by Whippy for a near-fall, but again Margera bounced back… literally, as he bounced a chair off of Whiplash on the top rope.
A superplex followed as Whiplash crashed through a conveniently placed pair of open chairs – told you he didn’t seem to care about the pain he puts himself through! – but again, Clint could only get a near-fall from this. The chair Whiplash landed on disintegrated on impact… so that gave Clint an idea, as he folded two chairs apart and put them on top of each other, then on their side. Another pair of chairs were left folded open outside, and Whiplash got his receipt, press slamming Margera to the chairs on the floor, prompting a chant of “check his pulse”… a cruel-but-kind chant, if there ever was one.
Whiplash rolled Margera inside for a near-fall, then finished him off with a death valley driver onto the sideways-opened chairs and that was that. Well, this was no-DQ in all but name, but my God, these two guys put themselves through a lot in the name of wrestling. This was a completely different side to Whiplash than he has displayed in PROGRESS, and a real surprise hit for me. ***½
Fight Club: PRO Championship: Pete Dunne (c) vs. Trent Seven
Dunne again went after the fans who called him “Peter”, then tried to bite the finger of a fan who offered it up. Don’t be so stupid folks!
The match started hot as Dunne leapt onto Seven with a back senton as Trent was doing his usual “log roll into the ring” opener, but the challenger decked Pete with a forearm after getting back to his feet. The PROGRESS tag champs traded chops between themselves early, as Seven went for an overhand cricket chop, but instead ended up nailing a DDT after having it blocked.
Trent tried for another cricket chop, but only after he’d given his gonads a proper grope, and willingly let Pete grab the hand… which led to the champion getting a taste of Trent’s ball sweat by mistake. Psychology!
Enraged, Dunne landed a series of vertical suplexes, before Trent countered and caught Pete with a stalling suplex in the middle of the ring. The champion countered by stomping on Trent’s forearm and head, wearing down his beardy challenger, then by stomping his knees into the mat after a spot of teased finger-biting.
Dunne continued to pound on Seven with forearms, but he eventually snapped and started fighting back. The fight-back continued even after he shrugged off a superplex, as he popped up to drop “Peter” with a Rainmaker lariat. Trent followed with a pop-up powerbomb and a single-leg crab as he tried to force a submission, but Dunne crawled successfully into the ropes for a clean break.
After getting back to his feet, Dunne traded running strikes in the corner until Seven surprised him with a lariat and a Samoan driver for a near-fall. Dunne blasted Seven with a rebound German suplex, then a release suplex and a double stomp for a two-count, then followed up with a chinlock of all things. Trent fought out, only to receive, then give a headbutt to knock both men to the mat.
Pete picked himself up and scooped Trent up for a tombstone piledriver for another two-count, before Trent replied with a Dragon superplex… but Dunne landed on his feet and delivered a pump kick and an enziguiri, only to be blasted with a lariat and a piledriver as Seven came close to victory yet again. Dunne rolled outside, but ended up pulling referee Shay Purser into the path of Trent’s tope, killing the official in the process.
Dunne caught Seven with a DDT off the ropes as he came back in, before a Drop Dead was countered with another Dragon suplex and a piledriver for a visual pin – since we still had no referee. Joel Allen eventually hit the ring as a replacement, just after Pete hit a low blow and the Drop Dead, but thankfully Trent kicked out… which meant that Joel got his fingers bit as the champion disputed the count.
Instead of selling like a dead man for a finger bite, Allen shrugged it off and counted a near-fall as Seven schoolboy’d Pete. Another piledriver was countered (complete with Trent’s trademark amusing “what the ****” remarks) into another Drop Dead, before a rear naked choke was clamped on to force a submission. That was a fitting end to an epic main event, and a match that I’d have no complaints about seeing again and again. ****
There was nothing wrong with the first night of Pulp Fixxion – but this show felt much, much better. Half a dozen matches were on offer, all of them great, with some fantastic story-telling and a true “something for everyone” vibe… Except flips. But let’s be serious, this group’s called Fight Club, and short of capoeira, you’re not really going to see to many of those in a fight, are you?
We’ve one more show left in their October weekend – the promotion’s debut in Manchester, complete with some surprise cameos… we’ll have that review up before the New Year!
Like most of the FCP back catalogue, this show’s up for £4 – or whatever Vimeo translates it into in your part of the world – and it’s exceedingly good value for money at that price.