The stakes were raised in GOOD Wrestling, as Big Grizzly put his spot in the company on the line in his bid to dethrone Gene Munny of his eponymous certificate.
We’re back in the Craufurd Arms for another outing from GOOD – who’ve done a little decorating since their March show. Okay, it’s just their name hanging from the walls, but at least it makes for some comedy when a letter drops. This is GOD.
Alex Cupid vs. Bjorn Beauman vs. Chase Williams vs. Los Federales Santos Jr. vs. Mauro Chaves vs. Owen Charles
The traditional GOOD scramble match was an “all debut scrambo”, opening with Santos Jr. taking a hard line against fun… threatening to drop people on their heads if they had fun.
Also included in this scramble was Alex Cupid, former referee turned wrestler Owen Charles, and the London Lucha League pairing of Bjorn Beauman and Mauro Chaves… who really needs to stop spitting kale. If you love it so much, you’d eat the damn stuff, not spray it over us. Three times.
Everyone superkicks Chaves to start us, and since we’re under elimination rules, this quickly saw folks pairing off. Santos and Charles got going, with Owen faceplanting Santos in a wheelbarrow before he had to deal with Beauman, whose ‘rana nearly caused another head drop! Beauman’s back with an Exploder, as the revolving door brought in Cupid, who channelled the spirit of D’Lo Brown for a leg drop… an un-D’Lo-like series of chops as Beauman was trapped in the corner.
Out goes Bjorn, in comes Mauro as the vegan villain decked Cupid with a face washing kick in the corner and a neckbreaker slam. Chase Williams comes in for Cupid as he had a brief flurry of offence, which gave way to a Human Centipede of side Russian leg sweeps… which Santos sparked with a crossbody! Owen Charles is very audible, to say the least, as he goes to one side of the ring and hits a dive… sparking a series of them, ending with a tope from Santos!
Back in the ring, we’re back to the revolving door o’ scramble matches, until Mauro Chaves pulled some kale out of his crotch. He found a way to make it worse! Santos blocks the genital kale and gets a Cupid superkick for his efforts… Cupid and Chaves have a debate about the food, and end up stuffing it into Santos’ mouth, sprinkling the abomination across the canvas… and again when Cupid hits a Stunner and a Falcon arrow for a near-fall. Not to worry, Cupid hits it again, and that’s enough to pin the vegan!
Cupid tries to clear the kale from the ring, but ends up getting caught with a Rocker Dropper from Beauman… and that’s another elimination! Chase Williams comes in with a diving knee and pins Bjorn, as it seems we’re into finisher eliminations, which continues with the Big Ending from Santos, who thinks he’s won… but Owen Charles is still hanging around, and almost wins with a roll-up!
Santos fights back, but ultimately gets caught in a cross armbreaker… he rolls up and tries to powerbomb Charles to get free, but Owen clings on and turns it into a roll-up to win the match! This was fine – the match seemed to die during the lengthy kale comedy, and all of the eliminations thereafter felt rushed… but otherwise a decent outing from all. **¾
Owen Charles’ celebrations were cut short by the appearance of Gene Munny and a briefcase! Gene’s not a fan of “pity claps”, because he’s here with a present… it’s the first ever GOOD championship belt. Which is another framed Gene Munny Certificate of Excellent with a belt! I’ll admit, he got me. Gene has an ultimatium: if Grizzly doesn’t win tonight, he’s out of GOOD Wrestling! Big Grizz heads out to agree… as long as it’s a no disqualification match.
Beano vs. Shanna
It’s another Portuguese debut in GOOD, which translated into a dance-off for Beano, who showed Shanna his best moves… and got some in return.
When the match started, Beano quickly took down Shanna with an apologetic neckbreaker as his moral compass wavered a little at the prospect of the intergender match. Shanna had no such qualms, kicking Beano before taking him down with headscissors and a DDT, before her dive was swatted away with a kick from the apron.
Back inside, Beano drops a knee for a near-fall, before a pump kick delivered a similar result. Shanna’s back with an enziguiri that took Beano into the ropes… and a rather long shot of her rear end led to… a baseball slide dropkick that took Beano to the floor. She fakes out a dive, then takes out Beano with a tope as he wandered around ringside… which seemingly earned her a right hand as Beano stopped holding back.
A pair of running enziguiri into the corners follow from the Welshman, but a third one misses as he hangs himself by the feet in the ropes and ended taking a double stomp for a near-fall. Beano’s back with K-Kwik’s old Hat Rack Crack for a near-fall, but we’re still going back and forth as Shanna comes close with a bridging German suplex, before she went up top… and her crossbody block’s rolled through as Beano turns it into a rope-hanging uranage for the win. This was alright – I liked the slight hesitations at the start from Beano, but on the whole this did little for me. **¾
Post-match, Beano helped Shanna up as they had another dance…
Roy Johnson’s out next for his Wasteman Challenge. A fair part of the crowd seemed to be unsure about “Big Wavy”’s shtick, which I suppose is fair since he’s not been a regular part in PROGRESS for a while. The challenge was answered by Mike Bird, who came out in a nWo red-and-black t-shirt, eventually to Tom Jones’ “Delilah”… along with a broom and dustpan.
Someone misunderstood the whole “wasteman” gimmick, but at least he was wise enough to bring the kids in the crowd up to speed on the whole nWo thing. When Mike’d been clued up on the Wasteman Challenge, his response to Johnson was… Goldie Lookin’ Chain’s “Your Mother’s Got a Penis”.
Roy Johnson vs. Mike Bird
In response, Johnson started putting the boots to Bird, as one would.
Bird quickly leaps over Johnson in the corner and turned things around with some chops and, erm, nipple twisters! Johnson raked the eye to get back in it, before whipping Bird upside-down into the corner for a spot of choking. He absorbs some body blows before taking down Bird with a backbreaker for a near-fall, before using the turnbuckles as something to whip the Welshman to.
Johnson started to get fed up at the low counts, so he grabbed his phone out of his ring jacket so he could get film him Happy Slapping Bird. It didn’t go well…
— BIG WAVY (@RoyJohnsonYeah) May 19, 2018
From there, Bird dumped the former Bodyguy with an overhead belly-to-belly for a near-fall, before rolling him over in a Sharpshooter because “I’m Bret Hart!” Johnson gets free and hits a full nelson slam to give him some breathing space. In the middle of Roy’s comeback part of the set falls down, so this is now OOD wrestling… just in time for Bird to catch him with the fireman’s carry gutbuster that really needs a food-related name.
Johnson’s right back in with a lifting Flatliner, before he dragged Bird into the middle of the ring for… a Wavy elbow? There’s a jump cut after Johnson misses, but we miss little as he staggered into a piledriver for the win. Solid, but not spectacular – and it’s another win for Mike Bird. ***
Team White Wolf (A-Kid & Adam Chase) vs. Anthony Mafia & Warren Banks
This marked the GOOD debut of the Spanish pair, who came to the party with their ATTACK! tag titles.
Mafia tried to fake out White Wolf with punches, but he’s immediately smothered on the mat as A-Kid was more about the wrestling than the trash talking. It seemed to shock Mafia, who replied with a hammerlock takedown, only for Kid to get free and dropkick himself to safety. Armdrags follow, but Mafia fakes out a third one and ends up getting trapped in a headlock as Adam Chase comes in… and gets punched out.
Warren Banks gets the tag too to try and keep the pressure up, and after sizing up Chase, he grabs a headlock, but the Spaniards are able to overcome that and take the big man down… only for Banks to come back in with a cross chop to the throat as the duo who called themselves “Young Legends” took control. A-Kid’s kept away from a tag, helped with Banks’ reverse kick to Chase on the apron, as Banks and Mafia exchanged somewhat frequent tags, with Mafia coming in to hit a standing moonsault off of Banks’ back. It’s alright stuff, but you got the sense that they were two individuals teaming up, rather than the traditional “tag team” going by their stuff.
Some disco kicks from Banks keep Kid in the corner, before Mafia exploded with some right hands just as Kid looked to be tagging out. Eventually A-Kid manages to get the tag out, right as Mafia comes in… and into a crossbody as White Wolf counted a comeback, using a reverse/regular DDT combo on the Young Legends for a near-fall.
Banks responds with a big spear to A-Kid for a near-fall, but White Wolf bounce back with a 619 and a cutter to Mafia, which earns them a two-count. Another Parade of Moves leaves just about everyone down, ending with a standing Spanish fly to Mafia. We get a spot of comedy as Banks slammed Mafia onto White Wolf… but returning the favour nearly costs them as Mafia falls onto his back…
The Young Legends rebound with a spinning heel kick/spinebuster combo for a near-fall, but they end up running into each other not long after that, allowing the Spaniards to come back with a diving kick-assisted German suplex for a near-fall, or was it? The referee held up his count for, reasons, with Banks finally getting his feet on the ropes at the count of five… but the bell rings as the match just ends. Inexperienced referees everyone! An unfortunate ending to what had been a good match, and as much as I’m not a fan of the Mafia character, his in-ring stuff has improved by leaps and bounds from that prior match which just dragged… ***¼
Wild Boar vs. Jayde
We’ve a jump start here as Boar’s attacked on the stage by Jayde, who crotched him with a broom before using it for a side Russian legsweep. Someone’s been watching Sandman tapes!
More broom shots followed on the stage as it’s legal before the bell, before she suckered Boar into charging himself into the crowd. Jayde tried to capitalise by rolling him in and hitting some knees, but a trio of knee tremblers only got a near-fall… so out comes the rage as Jayde kept the Boar in the corner with chops and the like.
An Irish whip’s blocked as Boar gets back into it, taking Jayde into the opposite corner, only to end up running into her boot… and then suffered a back rake as Jayde climbed into the corner for a push-down stomp. That’s still not enough, much to her despair, so she throws more chops… which just rile up the Boar into making a comeback, throwing chops of his own before tossing Jayde across the ring.
Jayde manages to duck a clothesline and counter with some headscissors, but a flying ‘rana’s caught and countered into a big powerbomb from the Welshman. Not to worry, Jayde’s back with another Shining Wizard like-knee for a near-fall, as she continued to trash talk the Boar… but she keeps going to the well too often, and ends up getting tossed with a T-bone suplex!
A cannonball in the corner’s next, as Boar quickly followed in with the Trapper Keeper… but out comes a masked man to pull the referee out of the ring! With no ref, our masked hoodlum drops Boar with a rolling elbow, before placing Jayde on top for the easy win. This was a lot shorter than I remembered live, but this was really just a way to get us to Jayde and her mystery accomplice… which I assume’ll play out over future shows, rather than have the person just unveil themselves. **½
No Disqualification for Gene Munny Certificate of Excellence: Big Grizzly vs. Gene Munny (c)
The stipulations added to this match meant that if Grizzly couldn’t win, he’d be forced to leave GOOD while Munny’s champion.
Grizzly’s all about the chops early on as he lit up Munny’s chest – while avoiding the neatly taped-up nipples of the champion. Gene gets free, but his leapfrog’s roughly caught and turned into a takedown as Grizz slammed and splattered him with relative ease. Hell, even some headscissors were effortless as Grizzly was on a mission.
For some reason the referee telegraphs a ref bump as he hangs around in the corner when the pair were whipping themselves from corner to corner… and one Grizzly squashing later, we’re down a ref! Gene manages to spear Grizzly, but referee number two isn’t in any hurry to come out… and when he does make it to the ring, he watches on as Munny hits an imploding standing senton.
Grizzly heads outside, but he’s able to catch a tope from Munny, charging him into the ring post before dumping him on the apron with a slam. A chair comes out from the crowd as Grizzly whacks Gene in the back… and it’s not a folding chair either! We head towards the ring post for some chops, and of course Gene hits the post… while Grizz just aims for them there nipples.
They end up brawling outside as Munny makes Grizzly wear a traffic cone, and we head into the bar as confused publicans catch a real life bar fight. Complete with a tequila spray! Gene tries to piledrive Grizzly in the bar, but instead he eats a back body drop, before they grab another chair… and from experience, those aren’t that sturdy! Grizz returns the earlier favour, spitting beer at Gene, and now we’re going into the car park! Jesus, thank God this cameraman isn’t tethered!
We’re onto some picnic benches as the sun was doing down in Wolverton… just as Grizzly whacked Munny with a dog bowl. An eye rake stems the flow briefly, as Gene… picked Grizzly’s nose and ate it. Sorry for your lunch. We’re eventually taken back towards the ring as Gene complained about security doing little… Dead Referee #1 is still there as Grizzly finally rips off Gene’s nipple tape, before a legdrop on the apron was narrowly avoided! Munny grabs his certificate… but Grizzly punches it out of his hands as Gene had to find what I think may have been a Plan C at this point… which was a leg lariat!
It gets him a second fall as Grizz powered out, returning fire with a clothesline and a back senton off the middle rope. Gene goes low to escape a chokeslam, but it’s no DQ… and so he gets an instant receipt as Grizz showed he was more than happy to go tit-for-tat. The referee starts counting both men out, which I guess makes sense as it was only no-DQ, not no knock-out, but not to worry as both men were able to fight back to their feet, trading elbows and forearms in the process.
Grizzly cuts-off Gene with a powerbomb for a near-fall… and after getting back up, Gene kills another ref with the Ainsley Lariat. With no referee left, Gene uses the mic on Grizz… and then hits a big slam… but there’s nobody to count. So he grabs the microphone and reminds everyone that because he’s taken out all the referees, this has to be a no-contest… so Grizzly is gone.
Except there was a third referee: Owen Charles, making the switch from referee, to wrestler, back to a referee-for-a-tight-spot. He was still in his wrestling gear, which I guess meant he could shove and be shoved. He ducks an Ainsley Lariat and gives Munny a stunner, before a slam from Grizzly led to a fast-counted near-fall for the Welshman. Gene tries to fly into Grizz, but the belt (with a framed certificate taped onto it) is used to swat him away as we get another near-fall. The match looked to get a little rough as a small package gets Gene a near-fall, before Grizzly lifted him up top for a gamengiri and a powerbomb for another two-count. Grizzly gets angry again, but he ends up running into an Ainsley Lariat… and stands right back up from it! Munny grabs a sleeperhold though, taking a drooling Grizzly down to the mat… and almost getting the win as the referee does the arm drop gimmick.
Grizz manages to fire back up to his feet, but gets taken down again with a schoolboy, then with another Ainsley Lariat for more two-counts. Exasperated, Munny bats Grizzly around the head with the remains of the certificate/belt, before one more Ainsley Lariat got the win. No held-up count, no slow-downs… a clean-as-a-sheet pin. This match felt a little weird on second viewing – like it went on a little too long… and as if the outcome was a little inconsequential, judging by the crowd not booing. **¾
Post-match, Gene Munny made the stand-in third-referee raise his hand as Gene paraded with the remains of his belt. There’s a brief shoving match with the referee, who tried to call for the mic to cut a promo, but that wasn’t happening as instead the show ended with a farewell to and from Big Grizzly, whose time in the promotion is over… at least until Gene Munny loses his belt.
Lose Yourself was a solid show from GOOD, if not a little loose at times. Perhaps it was the warmer-than-usual venue, but that main event felt like it could have been a little shorter – with either the bar brawl or the car park stuff, but not both. Still, live, this was a fun show to watch, and thanks to the camera work (which puts a lot of bigger promotions to shame), that translated to the VOD. Their next show’s in July, with several big names already announced, including CCK, Aussie Open and El Phantasmo.