FIGHT! Nation wheeled out the Lethal Lottery as they started a path to crown a new number one contender.
On last week’s show, FIGHT! National announced that Sammy Smooth, James Castle, Sid Scala, Liquid Dreams and Psycho Phillips will be drawn into random teams, and then placed in a round robin tournament. The winning team’ll face each other to become the number one contender to Mark Haskins’ title.
We open with a series of promos with all six men talking about the tournament, and then the title screen… which hasn’t been updated to show the new champion. My new game is to imagine that the two people getting credits in the intros are the ones taking some moves…
Our nameless narrator confirms our random teams; firstly: Sid Scala and Sammy Smooth. The pair of them (not together) have an in-character promo about their pairing. For some reason they include comments from the rest of the entrants about it… team two is Liquid Dreams, who somehow got drawn together. They get their sit-down promo with some annoying “new take” jump cuts, whilst everyone else bemoans their luck.
By default, then, James Castle and Psycho Phillips are the third team, but that’s not called out. Instead, we’re going to some action… in a new venue, as we’ve moved to Eastbourne’s My Skate World.
Liquid Dreams (Jakey & Brucey) vs. Sid Scala & Sammy Smooth
Liquid Dreams are apparently fresh off of a tour of the Philippines, to keep the joke running. Sid Scala is a smaller guy, with a character that’s heavily-inspired by Derek Trotter out of “Only Fools and Horses”. One day, he’ll do a segment where he falls through a bar, probably with WCPW if they ever book him…
Scala and Smooth argue over who should start, and they side-step Jakey who tries to charge them. Then again for Brucey, as Smooth then throws Scala into the pair of them. Smooth then leaps over Scala’s back into a pile, as Liquid Dreams are all over the place to begin with. For some reason our commentator’s butchering their names even more now, as they’re Bruce-ski and Jake-ski in his mind (are they suddenly Russian?!), and Scala comes in with his flat cap to stamp on Jakey.
Scala uses his cap and t-shirt to blind Jakey for some punches and stomps, before he follows up with a poke to the eye. Smooth tags in, and invites Jakey to punch him, but instead Smooth pokes him in the eye too. Tag back to Scala, who lands an elbow drop for a one-count, and then he brings in Smooth for some double-teaming.
Scala again corners Jakey with a headbutt, before Brucey finally re-emerges to distract Scala for long enough for Jakey to land a dropkick for a couple of near-falls. After commercial, we return with Scala being dragged into the Liquid Dreams corner as he’s isolated. Brucey grounds Scala with an armbar, which gets turned into a roll-up for a near-fall.
Liquid Dreams do their annoying series of leapfrogs into the corner… but instead of attacking Scala, they just celebrate. Okay… Regardless, they take Scala into their corner and choke him for a spell as the referee’s distracted, but Scala attacks Brucey from behind, but he gets cut off just as he was about to make the tag to Smooth.
Jakey gets a near-fall from a suplex, before he holds down Scala with a headlock… but Sid escapes and pulls off a sunset flip for a near-fall, and then runs into a back elbow from Jakey for another two-count. Liquid Dreams pull off a series of cartwheels to delay making a pin, and the heels continue to isolate Scala from his partner.
An enziguiri from Scala drops Brucey, but yet again he’s unable to tag out. Jakey gets a headbutt and a slam, before more showboating from the heels lead to them missing an elbow from an electric chair drop, and in comes Smooth for the hot tag. Uppercuts galore for Liquid Dreams! A rebound headbutt takes down Jakey, who just about kicks out in time even though the referee counted three (*cough*Botchamania*cough*).
Smooth drops Jakey with an arm whip for a near-fall, but Liquid Dreams come back with a double superkick for a near-fall after they’d kicked Smooth to his knees. Brucey holds up Smooth for a low blow, but of course, he gets out of the way and Jakey kicks his partner… a pump kick from Smooth drops Jakey, before a spin-out Blue Thunder Bomb from Smooth gets the win for the makeshift team. A pretty good showing from both men here in what has to be an upset. ***
This was the first time I’d seen Scala, and he worked well as an undersized babyface-in-peril character. Think of (Rockstar) Spud from about a decade ago, and you’ll be down the right lines…
Apparently our next match also involves Liquid Dreams… this was all taped on the same night, but it seems the “buffer” match (Josh Bodom vs. Jay Lethal) isn’t getting shown here.
We return to a recap of last week’s FIGHT! Nation title match where Mark Haskins dethroned Marty Scurll. Next week, Haskins will defend his title against Joseph Conners. That should be pretty good…
Before we go to action, we see some sit-down interviews with James Castle and Psycho Phillips, whose pre-match photo barely looks like him. Everyone else piles in too, with Sid Scala’s promos being quite funny as he took aim at Phillips.
Liquid Dreams (Jakey & Brucey) vs. James Castle & Psycho Phillips
For some reason Liquid Dreams start the match on the apron… until they’re yanked in by Phillips as the heels start off being pounded on in the corners. Phillips and Castle shove each other, before they step back and allow Liquid Dreams to run into each other.
A back rake takes Jakey into the corner, before Phillips and Castle exchange unwilling blind tags as they play the “unwanted partners” story here. Phillips tags himself in as Castle was shoulder charging Jakey in the corner, and Jakey ends cartwheeling out of the corner and dropkicks Phillips. Brucey finally gets tagged in, and he drops an elbow for just a one-count, and we’re back to the heels isolating a babyface like we had in the first match.
Back from commercial, Jakey’s stomping away on Phillips, as the double-teaming continues. Apparently getting the crowd to boo the heels hurts the babyfaces as “the crowd can’t cheer them” (I get the logic, but not how it translates to the babyfaces… and are Phillips and Castle actually babyfaces?!)
Psycho counters a suplex and drops Brucey with a vertical suplex, but Jakey runs in knock Castle off the apron to prevent a tag. A back elbow from Jakey gets a near-fall, before Brucey comes in and lands a standing moonsault. Jakey tags back in and hits a moonsault off the back of Brucey for another two-count. Jakey punches away in the corner on Phillips, but Psycho rebounds out of the turnbuckles with a clothesline, and finally makes the tag out to Castle!
Castle dropkicks Jakey into the corner, before scoring an avalanche clothesline and a boot to the head. Phillips blind tags himself back in and punches Jakey down as he was in a hanging vertical suplex, only for Brucey to make the save. Liquid Dreams toss out Castle and drop Phillips with an Eat Defeat, then a double superkick, before Jakey gets an electric chair splash for a near-fall as Castle breaks it up.
Liquid Dreams tease the double-team low blow again, and of course it goes wrong, as they kick each other for some reason, for a double low blow. Castle clotheslines Jakey to the outside, leaving Brucey in the ring for a chokeslam as Psycho Phillips scores the win. Well, that was something… it seemed a shade below what we saw to begin with, perhaps because a lot of the same template was used in the two matches? Isolating Psycho Phillips didn’t work quite as well as when they did it to Sid Scala… particularly as Phillips is bigger in height and weight! **¾
Liquid Dreams are out of the tournament with two losses, so the winner of James Castle & Psycho Phillips vs. Sammy Smooth & Sid Scala next week wins the tournament… then have to face each other for a title shot down the line. For some reason we don’t get a proper sign-off this week, as the commentator talks over the credits as the show comes to an end.
Another decent show, but I was left a little non-plussed by the fact that we had back-to-back matches with Liquid Dreams. That wouldn’t have been too bad, but these were largely the same match, with a portion that didn’t really work out (Psycho Phillips playing babyface in peril didn’t work against a smaller man!) – still, a pretty good show for beginners, and those in search of action without much in the way of storyline histrionics!