PROGRESS’ annual end-of-year Unboxing Live show was a bit of a marathon – and one that marked the end of an era in the promotion.
Yes, the VOD’s weighing in at over three and a half hours long. I can hear Arnold Furious muttering about it already. No wrestlers were announced ahead of time for this show, so everything was a mystery match. Except there’s no Jim Duggan…
If you’re playing banter bingo, Jim does the “slide into my DMs” bit in his opening spiel, as the number of first timers sounded very low. Hey, Brandon Tolle’s refereeing a UK show. Eh? Nothing against him, but that gives me very strong vibes of 1PW when they used to fly in refs. Anyway, Glen Joseph and Matt Richards are on commentary once again…
PROGRESS Atlas Championship: Trent Seven (c) vs. Los Federales Santos Jr.
We begin with an Atlas open challenge, and sadly the challenge isn’t answered by a fan. Heck, if they can’t pay the ring crew, there’s probably no insurance for that! Instead, we got… Santos? Holy crap, my speakers blew out for that pop!
Santos confiscated the belt while Trent was posing, and we start with the Hogan/Rock WrestleMania 18 face-off, and the Glen laugh. Yep. I don’t get it. The opening tie-up leads to Trent going for a shoulder tackle, which doesn’t work, so he hitches up his trunks as we wash, rinse and repeat, before Santos just lowers them and shoves Trent down.
A cartwheel sees Santos surprise everyone, before Trent responds with an atomic drop that hurt his good knee. For some reason the ref needs to check if Santos is armed… and sure enough, there’s the No Fun Gun. Cue the Mexican (Welsh?) stand-off, as Brandon Tolle kicks the made-of-helium gun away, as the improv section of the match continued. To their credit, the crowd play along, even if Trent seemed to be half-arsing his improv…
It ends with Trent “shooting himself”, with the crowd begging for Santos to pin him. I’m guessing they’re not sharing my miserly thoughts on his improv! Eventually Santos quietly goes down, but gets rolled up for a near-fall, before Trent prepared for the cricket chop, but only after he tasted his ball sweat.
What the hell?! Santos hits a handstand kick to knock Trent off the apron, before we’re taken for chops around ringside… except Trent’s chest is apparently steel. Like the ring post he chops. Back in the ring, Trent hits the cricket chop, only to get flipped inside out with a release German suplex as Santos looked for the finish… but Trent slips out and hits a Dragon suplex, then a Seven Stars lariat for a near-fall.
A backfist from Trent leads to him stopping for a false alarm enziguiri, then a spinning back heel kick as the Big Ending puts Trent down for a near-fall. He followed that up by going up top, headbutting away Trent’s bid to cut him off as he Santos instead hit a big splash onto Trent’s bad wheel for another near-fall. Santos tries to go up top again, but this time he’s brought down with a superplex for a near-fall, before what was meant to be a piledriver gets Trent another near-fall From the kick-out, he hits it again, and this time it’s enough as Trent retains. Trent Seven: comedy wrestler is a very much take-it-or-leave-it affair for me. Some matches he hits, others it’s so ridiculously over the top that I can’t get into it. Enjoyable, but so not my graps. **¾
Spike Trivet vs. Travis Banks vs. Mark Haskins vs. Chris Ridgeway vs. Shigehiro Irie vs. Jody Fleisch
The rest of Do Not Resuscitate came out… but didn’t stay at ringside for Spike Trivet here. Sadly, it meant we didn’t get to see William Eaver’s “FREE AGENT” shirt for long. Travis Banks got a “happy to see you” pop, while we had some “insider banter” as he remarked that “I can’t fight you” (or words to that effect to the ROH-contracted Haskins).
Oh, and there was a pop for Jody Fleisch, who somehow was making his PROGRESS debut on this show. Spike’s sent outside and dived on by Haskins at the bell, before Travis Banks tried to chop away at Irie, who then takes a reverse ‘rana from Fleisch as we’ve got the mad opening.
Spike Trivet sprays champagne at Fleisch, as the revolving door effect continues. Mark Haskins comes in to tweak away at the arm, before Travis Banks tried to break it up. It didn’t last for long as the match just spilled outside, where Irie just bloody POUNCES Haskins into the crowd. There’s another POUNCE for Travis Banks too, as that section of the crowd were perhaps getting a little nervous, ahead of a running cannonball into a seated Ridgeway on the floor.
In the ring, Irie ate superkicks from Haskins and Banks, before we switched up to Banks and Ridgeway throwing kicks. All the kicks. Irie and Fleisch try to break that up, but instead they ate double apron PKs on the outside as Ridgeway and Banks restored their focus on each other, with more kicks, then chops, and kicks again. Spike Trivet comes in to try and break it up with chops, but it’s just for comedic effect as Banks and Ridgeway just trip him for a barrage of kicks. Banks was almost babyfacing himself during this as he took glee during the beating of Trivet, who then tried to fire up… and got booted in the face. Travis then makes use of the no-DQ stip with a mule kick before low-pes sent him back towards the crowd, only for Irie to… POUNCE again!
Spike went for a dive, but instead stopped short as he instead paid of a member of the ring crew to do the dive for him. Except Irie catches him and gives him mercy as we wash, rinse and repeat with Trivet’s trunks seemingly being a cash machine. In the end, Spike has to get his phone and PayPal three crew members… because comedy! The OJMO crashes and burns into the front row, while Joseph Kafka and Solomon Lamb had a more graceful landing.
Oh, and now the referee’s in on it. Until Joel Allen sees Irie on the apron, and he changes his mind as the joke almost outstayed its welcome, with Irie forcibly sending Spike head-first into the pile on the floor. There’s an accidental flub from Matt Richards which we gloss over until Jody Fleisch gets geed up for a dive, as a springboard shooting star press took him into the front row. Not quite as bad as some steps, but close!
In the ring again, Irie locks a 720 DDT as he then piledrove Mark Haskins onto Jody Fleisch! The packe quickens again as Haskins counters Travis Banks’ Slice of Heaven into a Sharpshooter as a Parade of Moves (mostly kicks) broke out, until Trivet avoids an axe kick from Ridgeway and hits a back cracker instead. Haskins is back to take out Trivet with a death valley driver, before a scuffed 720 DDT from Fleisch continued another Parade of Moves, ending with more Ridgeway kicks.
An axe kick from Ridgeway nearly puts Irie down, before he’s trapped in a double armbar… and there’s the win for Riddy! This was multi-man madness, but it felt like it was perhaps too packed… and yes, I was thrilled at how Spike Trivet was made to look. Do Not Resuscitate seem to have lifted the Nothing to Prove playbook, eh? ***
PROGRESS Women’s Championship: Jinny (c) vs. Jordynne Grace
Something something “spidey senses are tingling”? Jinny, who had lost a loser-leaves-town match in EVE two weeks earlier, had a somewhat impromptu title defence against Impact’s Jordynne Grace, with some perhaps wondering “hey, isn’t the last chance we’ll get WWE vs. Impact?”
Granted, this was a match that had been built-up since Grace’s debut in PROGRESS in September, but doing it unannounced felt like hands were forced. Anyway, let’s take a look at the match…
Glen Joseph mentions PROGRESS’ expansion in 2018 – a lot of which probably won’t be repeated in 2019 for, reasons. We start with Grace grounding Jinny early with a hammerlock as the pair worked a ground-based game, with Jinny countering a headlock takedown with headscissors, only for Grace to escape and go right back to the headlock. After blocking a whip to the ropes, Jinny hits a back elbow, only to get caught with a POUNCE ahead of a diving clothesline as the champion looked to be in trouble early. Laura di Matteo pops up on the apron to distract as Grace looked for a death valley driver, allowing Jinny to get free and take over… at least until we’ve another POUNCE! In back to back matches, eh?
Those pounces get Grace a near-fall, before she took Jinny into the corner for a Vader bomb… but di Matteo pulls Jinny out of harm’s way as Nina Samuels came out and brawled to the back with di Matteo. Meanwhile, a STO from Jinny almost ends the match while everyone was distracted, as things bizarrely seemed to peter out. Both women miss charges into the corner, but it’s Jinny who capitalises with a Shibata-ish dropkick for just a one-count, before a series of slams from Grace led to a Michinoku driver that the camera crew missed because of too much zoom. A series of clotheslines from Grace gets cut-off as an Acid Rainmaker from Jinny drew a near-fall. Jinny runs into a big boot as Grace hurls Jinny into the corner for a running double knees, then a sliding back elbow into the same corner, ahead of a Vader Bomb for another near-fall.
From there, Jinny’s lifted into a torture rack, which she rakes the eyes to get free from. The middle rope X-Factor doesn’t quite go to plan but she gets a near-fall nevertheless, before another sliding lariat from Grace is countered into a crucifix for a near-fall. Jinny tries a sunset flip, but Grace pulls her up and into a bearhug, only for a follow-up suplex to get turned into a DDT, then another Acid Rainmaker for a near-fall as the crowd sensed a title change.
Another near-fall comes as Grace gets a Ligerbomb off, but the end quickly followed as a pumphandle driver dumped Jinny on her head – and that’s plenty enough to crown a new champion! My speakers blow out again as Jordynne Grace’s brief run in PROGRESS ended with her going from debut to champion in exactly three months. A pretty good match with a crowd-pleasing finish – now where do you go from here? ***¼
No Disqualification: Chris Brookes vs. Drew Parker
Those expecting Jonathan Gresham here had to quickly cheer when it was Chris Brookes coming out. His opponent was Drew Parker, as we again got William Eaver trying to do his street preacher gimmick OVER THE RING MUSIC. “Do No Resuscitate” appeared on the stage but went to the back as they’re not doing the pack mentality thing… which was perhaps what prompted Brookes to ask for this to become a no-DQ match.
We know what that’s code for here.
Parker charged at Brookes at the start of this “hardcore deathmatch”, but they quickly spill to the outside as Brookes chopped Parker around the ringside area as the sound goes out of sync. Yay Pivotshare.
Brookes pulls out a table from under the ring. Oh God. Parker repositions it as he goes underneath the ring for something else: another table! That’s put up by Brookes, who absorbs some chops before returning a favour as he looks for something else. There’s a LOT of rummaging under the ring going on, so Brookes just pulls Parker outside and hits a bicycle knee before he eventually finds Earl Perkins’ step brother. Drew quickly commandeers the staple gun, but loses it as his search for a sunset bomb ended with Brookes stapling the ring apron to him. A hammer comes out next as Brookes tries to pull out a tooth the hard way, before he dug out some sandpaper from his knee pad. Yeah, Glen Joseph thinks it’s a Christmas hat, and I want to know what sort of crackers he’s been buying.
Chops follow as both men are on the apron, in front of that table… but Parker hits a leaping stomp to smash Brookes into the apron ahead of a death valley driver that… yep, doesn’t break the table. Do Not Learn. Can we just have a moratorium on tables in Britwres in 2019? Parker tries to make the best of it, folding the table back up and propping it against the ring, before a death valley driver sees Brookes bounce off of it. Wembley flashbacks. Rather than persist, Parker just throws Brookes inside to pick up a near-fall, before using the staple gun on Brookes. The referee pulls out the staple as Brookes fought back with a leaping back senton off the top rope, then with a brainbuster for a near-fall. Brookes heads outside again as he pulls out some… baubles?! There’s a ladder too to complete the Wembley comparisons, but Parker stops him as it’s set up in the corner, with Drew of course taking a back body drop into the ladder.
Brookes then sets the ladder on its side as he hits almost a Michinoku Driver onto the ladder for a near-fall. We’ve more plunder as Brookes folds chairs open and places them on top of each other, but instead it’s Drew who uses them for a nasty landing as a Falcon arrow gave Brookes a nasty landing. A Detonation kick, then a double stomp through the chairs make it even more uncomfortable as Drew gets a two-count. Drew tries for a springboard into the ring, but Brookes throws a chair at him before going outside as a crucifix bomb actually broke the other table. Back in the ring, Brookes kills Parker with a Praying Mantis Bomb through two chairs, but William Eaver makes a meal of pulling out the referee to save the match as he needed to distract the referee so Spike Trivet and Chuck Mambo (who looked like he was wearing a vest made of tinsel) could interfere. A Chuck You lays out Brookes for a near-fall, so Chuck goes under the ring and pulls out…
A stocking of drawing pins and baubles. So that’s where the baubles came from earlier! Brookles has to fight off all of Do Not Resuscitate and ends up taking a suplex into the pins and baubles, before a 450 splash from Parker misses. Do Not Resuscitate tries to interfere again, but this time Mambo takes Praying Mantis Bomb into the plunder before a shot with the spike, then a Backseat Driver from Parker gets the win. This was an interesting deathmatch, it has to be said. Nowhere near as hot as the outing from last year, but having a lot of downtime searching for plunder will do that for you. ***
Post-match, the DNR beatdown on Brookes continues, with the four chair assault being prepared… but the CCK music hits as a returning Kid Lykos (plus baking tray) made the save, dispatching DNR all by himself. Yep, there’s nothing to prove here!
Before the second half starts, we have a posedown between the two referees. That’s a thing.
PROGRESS World Tag Team Championship: Aussie Open (Mark Davis & Kyle Fletcher) (c) vs. Swords of Essex (Paul Robinson & Will Ospreay)
Huh, well isn’t this a surprise? Two years ago at the first Unboxing, we had a tease of this… and now it paid off, with the crowd losing their minds for Ospreay’s appearance.
Oh, and massive duelling chants too, with a noticeable part of the crowd anti-Aussie Open. Huh. This really did have a feel of PROGRESS past vs. PROGRESS present, but at least the Swords (look like they) have grown up.
Robinson and Davis start us off, with Davis swinging at Robinson, who bit his way free before running into the proverbial brick wall. Another shoulder tackle almost sees Robinson POUNCED, before he rolled out to tag in Will Ospreay, who wanted another recently graduated heavyweight in Kyle Fletcher… so he tags in too. They lock up, but moved like bulls with locked horns until Ospreay charges Fletcher into the ropes ahead of a cheapshot chop. Fletcher charges back and pulls back from a dropkick, only for Ospreay to hit it at the second time. Ospreay struggles with a suplex, as Fletcher ends up having to deadlift the reversal before Mark Davis tagged back in and chopped through Ospreay. Paul Robinson comes in but easily gets swatted away as he allowed Ospreay to take some chops, with that sequence seeing Robinson smash the back of his head into Ospreay’s teeth, resulting in instant blood.
A flapjack from Mark Davis doesn’t help as the Swords looked to be in some sort of trouble… although he did manage to score a flying ‘rana to Davis, while Ospreay’s sunset bomb to Fletcher was less than clean. Things calm down a little back in the ring, as the Swords hit a double-team hiptoss then a standing moonsault for a near-fall on Fletcher, before Robinson’s latest attempt to shove Davis off the apron ended with him running into a Michinoku driver. Davis tags in and dumps the bloodied Robinson with a back body drop before throwing some chop/clotheslines at Ospreay in the corner. Robinson gets all jumped up… and punched out, only for Ospreay to help out as he pushes Robinson into a monkey flip on Davis. Ospreay sticks around to provide a base for an elevated big splash that’s way too zoomed in on, but thankfully it’s not the finish.
Ospreay and Davis exchange elbows, but Davis’ clearly has more oomph behind them, so Will needs a plan B – which quickly gets snuffed out as he ran into a sit-down splash. A tiltawhirl backbreaker from Fletcher and a back senton from Davis proved to be enough for a near-fall, as the ring again filled up, with Ospreay’s handspring getting caught by Davis, only for Robinson to stop an elevated cutter as instead Davis took a back cracker/lungblower combo.
Kyle gets his assisted cutter off anyway, with Ospreay proving the unexpected assistance as Robinson came down hard. Ospreay and Fletcher trade chops next, before a forearm from Kyle just sank Ospreay to the mat… and then the pace quickened as Ospreay ate a Ligerbomb for a near-fall. Somehow, Ospreay avoids a Fidget Spinner, then goes flying with a Sasuke Special to the outside as Robinson hits a corkscrew moonsault as well! A Robinson-special-assisted brainbuster’s good for a near-fall on Davis, who responds with a one-handed powerbomb to Robinson before throwing Ospreay outside for the double-team Go To Sleep on the floor. Robinson survives another assisted cutter as the Aussies turned up the heat.
A Fidget Spinner to Robinson would have won the match, but Ospreay flies in off the top to break up the cover. Duelling Cheeky Nandos follow in the corners as the Swords turned the tables, then went back up top for a pair of shooting star presses that gets a near-fall on the legal Fletcher. Following a curb stomp Robinson goes outside to grab a tag title belt, which Ospreay stops him from using, only for Davis to land a big lariat before he teed up for a pull-up piledriver.
Ospreay stops that, then runs away from an errant clothesline from Davis which almost took out the ref – but instead we get an opening for an Ospreay beltshot, as a pair of Robinson specials and an OsCutter drew yet another near-fall. From there, Fletcher’s draped across the top rope as a double stomp-assisted cutter leaves Fletcher down… and there’s a delayed cover, which is enough for Paul Robinson to get the three-count as he instantly headed to the back. Well, the early accident could have horribly derailed this one, with Paul Robinson bleeding from what felt like the opening minute, but all four men managed to get things back on track and pulled off the best match of the night so far. ****
This match got rave reviews live… on-demand, I just wasn’t feeling it. Is it a case of the Emperor’s new clothes, as a lot of “really good” PROGRESS matches seem to get overhyped these days? Then again, I am a little sour on Aussie Open’s chase for the title leading to them… losing in an impromptu match after three months. Is this a case of hands being forced? Time will tell…
We’ve an impromptu break as the ring crew clean up the blood, so we’ve got a game of Around the World with Jim Smallman…
Eddie Dennis vs. Marcel Barthel
My God, the pop when the RINGKAMPF music led to Marcel Barthel’s appearance. My poor speakers. Introduced as the former Axel Dieter Jr., this was the latest in a string of one-off surprises on the show.
The crowd manages to fit Barthel’s name into a song. The John Cena song, to be exact, as we get going with Barthel pulling Eddie down into an armbar, then sending him scrambling into the ropes. After that, a snapmare saw Barthel attempt to work over Eddie’s arm, but he has to counter a hold from Eddie as he rolled through into headscissors, before a bridging hammerlock kept the Welshman down.
A leg trip frustrates Eddie next, as Barthel works a toe hold, then a toe and ankle hold, as the mat work from the former wXw unified world wrestling champion was as sublime as you’d expect. Barthel switches it up, throwing Eddie through the ropes before a low dropkick took him outside, but a RINGKAMPF post looked to give Dennis a way back in… only for him to take a cross chop to the throat. Eddie’s right back in with a big boot and a swinging side slam for a near-fall, as he looked to take control.
Chops in the corner had Barthel rocked, but he replied in kind before running into a back elbow as Eddie picked up a two-count. Barthel’s back with clotheslines, then a running European uppercut, before a back suplex set up Bartel for another uppercut off the middle rope as he picked up a two-count. Barthel’s back to the chops in the corner, but Eddie has a forearm shot or two before he’s caught in the ropes with a gamengiri. A back elbow from Eddie finds its mark, before he ran into a Hamburgerkreuz from Barthel for a near-fall, as the pendulum kept on a-swinging. Eddie tries for a Severn Bridge out of the corner, but Barthel holds on, only to get hauled down with a superplex for a near-fall.
A PK’s good for a near-fall before Barthel’s bid to go for a Landungsbrücke is pushed away, allowing Eddie to quickly work his way into a Next Stop Driver for the win. This was a fun match with a rather sudden finish – but an enjoyable outing that would steal pretty much any episode of NXT UK if they were to rematch. ***½
Before the main event, Jim Smallman called 2018 the biggest year in the history of PROGRESS, having sold over 38,000 tickets in the calendar year… but it’s a year that’ll end with they having to say goodbye to someone else. You mean the rumours were true?!
Tyler Bate vs. Pete Dunne
Well, why not wrap up 2018 with one of the best matches in 2017 (at least, that was under the WWE umbrella?)
Dunne didn’t come out with the NXT UK title, nor was announced as the champion, which could spark some conspiracy theories. We’ve a tentative start as Dunne took Bate into the ropes, as we’ve got some teases early on while commentary were almost mourning the end of an era. A knucklelock from Dunne took Bate down for a near-fall, which led to an impressive early spo tas Tyler pushed Dunne into a sitting position before he stood up!
SWEET JESUS. As much as I loathe the “big strong boi” meme, that is strength!
Dunne takes Tyler down for what looked like the set-up to a bow-and-arrow hold, then into a Romero special set-up that Bate powered out of. After that, the pair keep it on the mat with duelling leg locks, before some grounded headscissors keep Tyler on the mat, at least until he rolled back and into the ropes as we’ve got this rather weird exhibition vibe going on.
There’s a sweet floatover headscissors as Bate took down Dunne in one fluid motion, but it’s too close to the ropes… and Dunne comes up and decks Tyler with a forearm as the technical stuff quickly gave way to some rough housing. An X-plex dumped Bate on the apron, before they return to the ring as punches and boots had Bate in trouble. A vicious strike has Tyler propped into the turnbuckles as Dunne was picking his spots with ease. A single chop from Bate barely fazes Dunne, whose response sends Tyler sailing over the top to the floor like he’d gone out of a cannon. Bate returns to the ring, but he’s caught in a Kimura, which Tyler tries to knee his way out of, before he stood up and ended up escaping by slamming Dunne instead. Things switch up into uppercuts as the pair went back to striking each other, until Tyler connected with a diving European uppercut off the middle rope.
A handspring back elbow into the corner from Bate led to an airplane spin, finishing off with a gorilla press/pop-up uppercut and a German suplex for a near-fall. Bate followed up with some Kawada-style kicks, before some palm strikes left Dunne back on the mat, but Peter backflips over in the corner… and then out of a German suplex before he kicked Bate and dumps him with a sitout powerbomb for a near-fall. With both men on the mat, we’re back to them grappling for a body part before Tyler just hits some ground and pound as the pair began to look spent… but not before Dunne gets up and does the forearm again.
A leaping headbutt from Bate cracks Dunne on the top rope as we almost had our second blood of the night… but Tyler recovers and scores an avalanche Exploder. Dunne’s right back in with a bop/bang of his own before a Bitter End drew a near-fall. From there, the pair engaged in a lengthy strike battle, like a hockey fight, before going nose-to-nose for another series of palm strikes that ended with a Koppo kick and a Tyler Driver from Bate. Dunne kicked out at two from that, then went outside and into the path of a hands-free plancha from Bate on the floor. They’re back in the ring, with Dunne stamping on Bate’s hand first, before they’re back to palm strikes as Dunne swats away a rebound lariat, ahead of a counter as a rebound lariat was turned into a German suplex. At the third time of asking, the rebound lariat connects, sending both men onto the apron as Dunne’s biting and roughness ended up with Bate dropping him onto the edge of the ring with a German suplex.
Dunne clings onto the ring apron, but Bate releases the grip and tries for a Tyler Driver on the floor. That’s escaped as a forearm sent Bate into the crowd, where he’s quickly pulled from as a tombstone on the floor lands… then a Better End in the ring as Bate kicked out at two again. Hammerfists to the side of Tyler’s head follow as he tried to cover up, with Dunne escalating into repeated stomps before both men looked for each other’s finishers, with Bate’s Bitter End getting countered into a DDT. Bate then counters a Better End into a tombstone, before chaining it into a package Tyler Driver for a near-fall. A Spiral Tap off the top is next, but Dunne kicks out, so Bate returns the favour from earlier some some more stomps. Paintbrushing swipes of the boot follow as Tyler “does a Peter”, then throws away his gumshield as he looked to go for a knockout… but Dunne catches a punch and turns it into a triangle armbar, then snaps away on the fingers once as Tyler instantly taps out.
I have no idea how to “rate” that. Compared to their other matches, this was a massive disappointment. One to file under “technically sound”, but they had so much working against them. The bombshell of them leaving being announced before the match killed the crowd, who looked like they either didn’t want to be there or perhaps didn’t want to believe what was happening… but then again the exhibition-style, at times too-deliberately-paced match was just not what they wanted to see when they were originally touted a “rematch of the best match of this era of British wrestling.” By their standards, they laid an egg, but this wasn’t normal circumstances either… ***
Post-match, Jim Smallman egged the crowd on to say goodbye “for now” and to thank Tyler and Pete for everything they’ve done. That drew more of a pop than the entire match did as the show ended with Pete, Trent and Tyler giving a curtain call from the stage of the Electric Ballroom.
In a turbulent time, 2018’s Unboxing Live really did feel like an end of an era, and not just for the farewells to Pete Dunne and/or Tyler Bate in the main event. It’s quite telling that the rumours that broke at the start of the month re: the WWE UK contracts led to results manifesting the way they did here. If you’re still refusing to believe those reports have a shred of truth, then sure, this card (and the farewells) were a nod and a wink, perhaps as a rib.
At worst, it’s a sign of things to come, as some of the bigger names on the PROGRESS roster are firmly put in the rear view mirror – which’ll explain some of the results here. Aussie Open losing the title after three months perhaps frees up Mark Davis to cash in his Natural PROGRESSion Series win for something else, while Jinny dropping the title to Jordynne Grace was perhaps a case of “needs must” in terms of timings as the eventual destination was reached sooner than perhaps planned. We’ve said it repeatedly here, but 2019 is going to be an interesting year for a lot of the British wrestling scene, in terms of who goes where and how things shake down. I can only hope that the almost funereal atmosphere at the end of Unboxing Live was a blip and doesn’t set the trend going forward.