Ireland’s best versus America’s best. It’s a technical masterclass at the Big Sean – and it’s online to watch for free. So why wouldn’t you??
We’re going back to the Big Sean (the Sean O’Casey Community Centre) in Dublin for this – from their Episode 9 show last month. There’s been a bit of controversy about parts of the show, but that’s not what we’re here to pick apart… instead, it’s the main event that had us looking “can we really get to Dublin and back for this?” Sadly, we couldn’t, so instead, Fight Factory Pro Wrestling’s put this up for free on YouTube! Commentary comes from the pair of Ben Givan and Corporate Cian.
Michael May vs. Jonathan Gresham
There’s a fight with spotty radio mics, but that’s not to matter…
May drew first blood with a hiptoss as the preliminary “feeling out” process got underway – all while commentary threw out a list of both men’s prior victories. Needless to say, one of those lists was stronger than the other, thanks to a recent New Japan tour for the Octopus. Gresham tries to trick his way out of a strangle hold, but May’s wise to it as he proceeded to force Gresham down in a knuckle lock… only for Gresham to get free and score with a headlock takedown. They don’t race through holds here, which is great to see as Gresham forced May to the mat with a simple hammerlock, forcing his opponent to try and roll free… but Gresham keeps hold of the wrist, and the hold.
When May looked to get free, Gresham just took him back to the mat with a La Mistica, then booted the arm away as May started to get tetchy with his foe. It’s not helped when Gresham went back to work on the arm, going into an armbar, trapping the arm between his legs as he tried to fold May into the old Lasso from El Paso. Gresham torques away on May’s wrist before the Irishman was forced to roll away from a stomp… but Michael couldn’t deny Gresham’s laser-focus on that arm, as the Octopus went right back to the body part. Eventually May managed to find an opening with a series of hiptosses, as he then tried to work over the basics.
A headlock ends in the ropes, but Gresham’s quickly back on the mat courtesy of another headlock takedown. May clings on despite Gresham’s attempt to break it with a back suplex… so we end up in the ropes again, and back to the mat as Gresham’s attempt at a cheapshot was ducked, with May finding some luck here. Some criss-cross rope running led to the pair going for crossbodies at the same time… and you can guess how that ended. Poorly. Both men get back to their feet as Gresham tried to increase the pace, rolling through May’s roll-ups as the pair spammed pinning attempts, ending when May countered a backslide into some rolling Magistral pinning attempts… one of which looked to get the win as referee Niall Fox hit the mat three times, but he ruled that Gresham got his shoulder up in the nick of time.
With both men on their knees, they switched it up into forearms, but that just left May’s arm exposed as Gresham went back on it, and we’re back to high-speed stuff, with May’s luck having seemed to run out as he was firmly on the defensive. An Octopus stretch looked to follow, but May escaped and cracked Gresham with a nice Koppo kick in the corner! A pull-up Northern Lights suplex follows, but Gresham had enough to clearly kick out, as the pair went back to their striking game. May’s forearm worked top break up a wristlock, but Gresham’s able to get free, wrapping May in an Octopus hold, only for May to stagger back into the ropes for a timely escape. Not to worry, Gresham puts it back on, but May stands up and falls onto his back to squash the Octopus.
More forearms and elbows ensue, quickly upgrading into chops before the trade-off led to a Dragon suplex that dumped Gresham on his head… before a Ligerbomb led to another near-fall for May. The back-and-forth becomes breathless, with Gresham again going to the wrist as he forces May to flip free, but Gresham ends up predicting May’s offence, and scoring with a roll-up as he stuffed a headscissor escape for the out-of-nowhere win. That caught the crowd by surprise, but that was an excellent ending to a match that had been on a razor’s edge throughout. ****¼
The Irish scene has been getting an increasing amount of buzz thanks to the stadium shows from OTT in the past few years, but as we said last year after our trip to Dublin, the undergraps in Ireland is delivering the goods too. After all, the future stars have to come from somewhere, and Fight Factory’s record of developing and producing talent is up there with the best in the world. Even if you’re not a huge fan of technical wrestling, you owe it to yourself to watch this match… if only to see a different style of wrestling. A style of match that you can really sink your teeth into, especially when it’s done by some of the best in the world. Like it was here…