Rev Pro’s final trip to the London Cockpit this year was a bit of a mixed bag, as the final pieces were put in place for the following week’s Uprising show.
Andy Quildan and Andy Simmons are on commentary as usual, whilst Steve Lynskey – broken arm and all – is your ring announcer. Sadly, we’ve got the return of the badly-focused hard camera too…
El Phantasmo vs. Kurtis Chapman
Phantasmo picked up the win against Chapman and the current Cruiserweight champion, Ryan Smile, when Rev Pro toured Cardiff two months earlier, so this seems to be a chance for the “Super Contender” to get his win back. Hopefully ELP’ll have better luck here than he did getting his LED glasses to work!
Phantasmo looked at ease against Chapman early, but Kurtis is showing he’s happy in the air as well… only to start his quest for a suplex. Does nobody learn from Kid Lykos?! Insulted by Kurtis wanting to try his “big move” so soon, ELP chopped the kid so hard he awkwardly crashed to the floor, before decking him with another forearm. One day, Chapman will learn, especially when he keeps getting suplexed.
Chapman manages to take ELP to the outside with a ‘rana, as he followed up with a dive as well, before spiking Phantasmo with a tornado DDT back inside. It actually led to Chapman’s big moment, as he got off a superplex, but it’s not enough for the win! In return, ELP gets off his whirlibird neckbreaker, before sailing off the top rope with a big splash as Chapman again refused to stay down.
Phantasmo thought he’d had it won when he got Chapman in place for a tombstone, but it’s countered into the Sega Mega Driver, only for ELP to hit straight back with a pop up Cutter, before going for the senton bomb, moonsault combo… but the second half misses as Chapman rolls back on ELP for the win! A big win for Kurtis, and that should at least put him in the discussion when it comes to the Cruiserweight title scene. ***
Interestingly on commentary, they noted that Chapman’s moved away from the singles scene… which leaves poor Josh Wall on his own.
RJ Singh vs. Rob Lias
RJ’s back to his “old” new music after his Bhangra Knights song lasted a month… and this time he’s got Rev Pro’s mouthy one. Lias was greeted with a sea of “We Want Eddie” signs, after Eddie lost to him last month – leading to Eddie not getting booked as his win/loss record finally pushed management into action.
The thing is, Lias mocked Eddie’s dancing throughout, so in hindsight, this was a giveaway that something was amiss…
They worked a basic match, with Lias somehow tumbling awkwardly from a drop toe hold, before RJ caught him with a knee to send him outside… followed by a ‘rana off the apron. RJ had a black eye from an earlier match, and of course, Lias targets it with a back elbow as he starts to wear down the veteran, mixing in stomps to the head and a vicious side Russian legsweep into the turnbuckles.
More slo-mo mocking of Eddie’s dancing just had the crowd expecting interference, but when RJ got back into it with a superkick, it perhaps caused a red herring. Even more so when RJ nearly won with a Falcon arrow… but Lias gets back to the neckbreakers as Andy Q gave us a welcome callback to that time RJ became Sting.
RJ double-springboards into a forearm from Lias, who followed up with a pumphandle version of the ushigoroshi… but Singh kicked out again, prompting Lias to get shirty with Chris Roberts. Lias goes for a back cracker, but RJ shrugs him off… and they do it again, with Lias this time bumping into Roberts. Oh dear.
Singh tries for something, but Lias kicks RJ low, following up with a Last Chancery… and that’s the cue for someone to wander in. Eddie Dennis gets into the ring, prompting Lias to break the hold, before hitting Rob with a forearm… and there’s the DQ! Well, we half expected shenanigans here, but there were a few scrappy moments in the match which quickly got forgotten about. **¼
Eddie stared a hole through Andy Quildan on commentary as he left the venue… only to return when Lias mocked him some more, wishing him “good luck with your mortgage this month”. Yeah, Rob gets killed for that, as he should! Eventually Andy heads to the ring to calm things down, and it leads to Eddie expressing his anger at how Rev Pro handled the news of him not getting booked.
Long story short, Eddie asked for – and gets – another chance… with Andy giving him the name at the top of his email inbox. So this Friday, at York Hall, Eddie’s getting… Pete Dunne. Oh man. A throwback to Eddie’s Rev Pro debut in 2014, where he teamed (and lost) alongside Dunne and Mark Andrews…
Jinny vs. Charli Evans
With Jinny having an eye on next month’s women’s championship tournament – and her open challenge at York Hall on Friday – could this be a banana peel in the making?
Charli threw first shots, taking Jinny into the corner for a forearm as the Aussie then got caught on the top rope and was press slammed a la Ric Flair. Jinny made her pay with a curb stomp as she looked to keep Evans on the mat, snapmaring her down before literally walking over her.
Evans tries to mount a comeback, catching Jinny with a bridging fallaway slam, but she runs into another boot as the pair started to go tit-for-tat with flurries of strikes. A big lariat takes Jinny down though, as does a running boot as Evans unloads with some face-washing boots, before going up top again… this time succeeding with a crossbody!
Just like that though, Jinny kicks back and looks for an Acid Rainmaker, which gets ducked and turned into a Saito suplex for a near-fall. Evans follows up with a Stroke, planting Jinny on her head, but it’s still not enough, and Jinny comes back with more kicks before going for the Liger-esque seated surfboard. Charli rolls away though and gets pounded on for it, ending in a Rainmaker as Jinny continues her long run of Ws. Another dominant performance, but Evans looked strong – which they needed to do as she’s in next month’s tournament. **¾
Zack Gibson & Josh Bodom vs. Aussie Open (Mark Davis & Kyle Fletcher)
The winners of this get a tag title shot against Moustache Mountain at York Hall, so there’s a lot at stake… even if you want to read behind it and suggest “only one team can really win” since Rev Pro try to keep the good guy/bad guy divide.
The blurry hard cam shows just how wobbly the ring is during an early bit of rope running as all four men had a go at each other, with Bodom stupidly charging Kyle Fletcher into his own corner… and you can guess how that works out for him. Very poorly, was the answer, if you couldn’t tell, especially as Davis went to work with chops and high fives.
A sneaky tope from Kyle caught Gibson unawares as the Aussies looked to end this in short order, but Bodom kicked out from a frog splash, and quickly took Fletcher down with a neckbreaker onto the apron. Fletcher’s left isolated as Bodom and Gibson pepper him with shots, but he’s eventually able to bring Dunkzilla back in to clear house with a spree that massively got the crowd on-side.
Bodom blocks a powerbomb on Gibson, but ends up taking a one-handed one himself, only for Davis to get caught in the ropes and hammered with a Ticket to Ride lungblower out of the corner, then a flying cannonball from Bodom as the Shankly Gates almost forced a submission. Fletcher eventually returns to break it up as the ring fills, ending when Davis took a Ticket to Ride and a back suplex from Gibson to leave everyone down.
Another flurry led to Gibson having the dice rolled on him, before Bodom ate a Fidget Spinner… but Gibson manages to shove Mark Davis onto the ref to stop the count, and with Roberts down, Mark Davis looked for a double piledriver. Yeah, that didn’t quite work out, despite Bodom flipping, and instead he gets a pair of blow blows as Kyle Fletcher made the save.
Kyle continues to fly, with a flip senton to the outside, but Gibson interferes as he went to go back in, holding Fletcher in place for a Bliss Buster as Gibson finished off the Aussie with a Helter Skelter for the win. Gibson and Bodom go to York Hall – and have a title shot in waiting after this stormer of a tag match. All action, with not too much in the way of shenanigans… it’s just a shame there had to be a loser here! ***¾
Chris Ridgeway vs. Martin Stone
After intermission, we had the Rev Pro debut of Chris Ridgeway, who’s finally starting to break into the next level of promotions in the UK.
Much like Ridgeway’s outing with Timothy Thatcher for PROGRESS a week earlier, this was a solid, hard-hitting affair, with much of the crowd seemingly unfamiliar with Ridgeway. That’s the thing, whilst Rev Pro’s Cockpit shows do have a slight crossover with PROGRESS, there’s an awful lot more casual fans here than you’d guess, so this was another case of Ridgeway having to win over a new audience.
Stone looked to work away on Ridgeway’s legs, trying to nullify the expected kicks as he stayed on top of the newcomer in the early phases, but Stone’s tomfoolery just angers Ridgeway, who pushes away with his legs and starts to take the veteran to task, throwing in a myriad of kicks in amongst holds to keep Stone on the mat.
Stone rears back, throwing chops and forearms as the momentum swung his way, eventually leading to Stone going for a crossface as he looked for a submission. Ridgeway escaped and threw together some German suplexes, but Stone stayed resolute until both men landed clotheslines at the same time.
An Exploder out of Stone, then a right hand puts Ridgeway down, but it’s only enough for a two-count, and Ridgeway’s able to rebound with a brainbuster. More back-and-forth ensues with German suplexes, before a headbutt from Stone nearly gets a win, before a PK and a Rings of Saturn-esque double armbar almost sent the win to Ridgeway… but Stone chains together some more offence to regain the upper hand, before finishing off Ridgeway with the London Bridge elevated DDT. Really solid stuff, but perhaps not a style that would garner much of a reaction. These two never fail to disappoint, and Ridgeway in particular should have earned a regular spot with this showing. ***¼
After the match, Stone put over Ridgeway before issuing a challenge ahead of Friday’s Uprising show… a challenge to one of Rev Pro’s originals: Dave Mastiff.
Revolution Pro Wrestling British Cruiserweight Championship: Flash Morgan Webster vs. Ryan Smile (c)
Since winning the title at Global Wars last month, Ryan Smile’s had a bit of a rough time by his own admission. So it was a bit of a surprise for some that he made it here.
Without being too unkind, it was clear that Ryan wasn’t at 100% against “No Fun Webster” (Rev Pro managed to edit off that slip-up!), at times looking half a step off, and generally not looking his usual self. When the bell went though, Smile started to after go Webster’s shoulder, but Flash was able to shrug it off and drag down a leapfrog as he took the upper hand.
It seemed that pull-down tweaked Smile’s knee, as he grabbed at it for the duration of the match, but Webster didn’t go for the injury – and just kept going, snapping Ryan with a Mr Perfect-esque neck flip. Smile hits back with some right hands, but a clothesline takes him right back down as the momentum shifts yet again.
Some running forearms into the corner keep Smile ahead, but he’s sent onto the apron, where he hit back with an enziguiri before a missile dropkick took Flash outside… albeit at the expense of more damage to his own knee. A dive from Smile has to be aborted as the pair trade shots on the apron, culminating in duelling big boots as both men fell to the floor.
Both men beat the count, but it’s Webster who’s back on the ascendency, taking Smile into the corner for a knee before hitting a ‘rana to take Ryan back to the outside for a lowpe into the steps. Back inside, Webster nearly wins with his Rude Boy moonsault press, before hitting a Brit Pop Drop as Quildan-bot had a malfunction on commentary.
Webster tries for a piledriver, but gets backdropped onto the edge of the apron as Smile dives out again with a pair of topes, then his over-the-ringpost cannonball! Smile tries to finish off with a frog splash, but instead makes do with a leaping stomp as Flash moved out of the way, before the Out of Somewhere springboard cutter misses… giving Webster the chance to hit the Eton Rifles (Destino) for a near-fall!
The intensity creeps up again as Smile and Webster headed to the top rope, but Flash hits a ‘rana off the top rope before another Eton Rifles garnered yet another two-count, as the Strangler guillotine forced Smile to give up. A hell of an effort all things considered, with Smile gutting it out through that knee injury and beyond. Perhaps an unexpected title change, but this leads to something… next! ***½
Afterwards, we had a segment right out of Raw where Webster put over a heartbroken Smile and offered him a title shot “when he’s 100%.” Which became “Friday” it seemed, as a procession of folks came out to stake their claim – with all of them having beaten each other, for what it’s worth. So the advertised David Starr title shot is now a five-way, with Webster defending against Starr, Smile, El Phantasmo and Kurtis Chapman. Well, at least they’re finally doing something notable with the contenders!
No-Disqualification: Legion of Lords (Lord Gideon Grey, No Fun Dunne & Rishi Ghosh) vs. CCK (Chris Brookes & Travis Banks)
With Kid Lykos injured, this became a 3-on-2 no-disqualification affair, and my word, this was a wacky one. Rishi Ghosh was here – in human and balloon form – and watches on as the Legion of Lords “recreate” how Lykos got hurt again… by throwing out his shoulder sneezing.
Warning, dramatization, may not have happened!
When we get going, this match heads all over the place – from a Brookes and Banks jump-start. They go around the ringside area, with Brookes trying to force-feed Dunne Gideon Grey’s cane, before they eventually head into the stands with Dunne and Ghosh trying to suplex Chris Brookes into an already-cramped seating area (cheers for that starting that one Chris!)
Back in the ring, Gideon’s got a present for Travis Banks – it’s a balloon! We’ve seen this before… but Travis isn’t “just married”, so he pops it. Oh, the heartbreak! Travis was surprised there was no powder in it, but this was a legitimate present, and his nastiness just earns him a beating from “hard man” Ghosh.
Eventually Banks makes a comeback after being isolated for a prolonged period, and tags in Brookes, who manages to outsmart the Lords, sidestepping a diving Dunne who collides into Grey. A flip senton from Brookes takes out the Lords, before Lykos gets into the ring… and gets whacked on the head by a newspaper.
Aw, Gideon’s ongoing attempts to house train Lykos will never not be funny! He too has a present for Lykos, and it’s a handmade Lykos mask! Inside is another balloon, which Gideon pops, sending some powder into Lykos’ eyes, before he tried to go up top… only to get sent flying when Chris Brookes fired a party cannon into his backside.
Yes, that happened.
Inside again, Banks rocks Dunne and Ghosh with kicks to the chest as the Kiwi Buzzsaw took control once again, leading up to a cannonball in the corner. Grey ties to make the save, but ends up taking a rope-hung neckbreaker and a double stomp as CCK looked to edge towards the win, only for Grey to fly off the ropes and take down Brookes as he was held in the Spice Rack (torture rack) by Ghosh.
With a full ring, we had a parade of strikes, culminating in a double spear from Ghosh. Dunne loses that advantage as he walks into a Slice of Heaven and a slingshot cutter, but Grey makes the save with a cane shot as the momentum swings all over the place, ending with a Delicious Death Trap DDT from Grey and a springboard lungblower almost getting the Lords the win…
…but Lykos pulls out Chris Roberts just in time!
That gets Lykos in trouble again as everyone surrounds him, but he too has a present for the Lords – a card trick! Except the trick is he throws the deck of cards in their faces before whacking Gideon with his tippex-covered baking tray. Rishi gets a low blow before Dunne throws in an enziguiri, as CCK take advantage of the distracted Dunne, picking up the win with a Banks powerbomb – and a cheeky kick on the way down from Brookes. Absolute insanity to end the year at the so-called CCK-pit… and a decent match too if you want to look behind the shenanigans too! ***¼
For the final show of the year, the Cockpit could easily have been a throwaway show… but to their credit, they balanced the show for those who only do the Cockpit dates along with those who have more of an eye on the York Hall shows. 2017 has been a strong year for Rev Pro at the Cockpit, and it’s the reason why that’s the only season ticket we’ve broken for and bought for 2018… and if the matches we’ve seen this year are any indication, the theatre near Marylebone will continue to be host to some of the best value wrestling in England next year. With any luck, it’ll also be host to some new faces from the Rev Pro trainee class, especially now Kurtis Chapman and Rob Lias are starting to inch up the card.