One more time in OTT… WALTER vs. David Starr at WrestleRama 3, with Starr hoping to be on course for a shot at the OTT title?
In OTT canon, this was Jordan Devlin throwing a roadblock at Starr – in that his former tag team partner needed to overcome WALTER in order to get a shot at the newly-crowned Devlin. History suggested that this was too big of a hurdle… would it be?
David Starr vs. WALTER
Fulda. Hamburg. Oberhausen. Bielefeld. London. Melrose. Wolverhampton. Leeds. Newcastle. Manchester. Concord. All of those places, Starr has tried (and failed) to get a singles win over WALTER. Is Dublin about to get added to that list?
Curiously, commentary’s lightened up on Starr, who was seemingly having the beginnings of a nervous breakdown when Symphony No. 9 IV started. There’s still a few fans who are trolling Starr with chants of “you’ll never beat WALTER”. Maybe they’ll call themselves realists? Rolling outside at the bell to psyche himself up, Starr’s in a familiar position of being thrown around the ring by WALTER as the crowd chanted “26” – the number of matches in OTT canon Starr’s gone without recording a fall over WALTER. To be fair, one of those matches was a Rumble… which Starr eliminated WALTER from!
A shoulder tackle takes Starr to the outside, from where he returned to slap the Austrian… who just goes for his throat as referee Niall Fox grabbed the arm to break it up. Just as WALTER went for a chop. Interesting timing. Starr leaps on that to take WALTER down, but he got too arrogant too quickly, as a slam dropped him to the mat. Starr threw himself at WALTER after a low bridge took him outside, but a tope’s easily caught… only for Starr to catch a kick and throw it into the ring post. A different tactic, this time? Using a fan’s backpack as a pivot, Starr wrenched on WALTER’s knee on the floor, only for the big man to get up and deck him with a big boot in short order. And another. Thanks for coming.
Back in the ring, WALTER began to decimate Starr… but that earlier leg work began to have an effect, as a leapfrog led to WALTER jarring his knee, allowing Starr to come right back in on those legs. Those chops are harder to throw from the mat. Still, WALTER had more of a power game in him as he shoved Starr to the floor, giving him time to rest as he looked to haul Starr back in with a superplex… except the Product went for the leg again, as this time, he was finally making some severe headway. A ringpost figure four didn’t quite go to plan, but it was effective – and aggressive – enough to keep WALTER on the back foot. A patronising pat on the head from Starr led to a chop. Which WALTER gleefully returned to leave Starr shaking on the mat.
More chops, more! Another boot too! A seated splash… that moment of arrogance looked to cost Starr, who tried to fight back in… but he ends up getting caught in a tombstone. A tombstone that seemed to hurt WALTER just as much as it did Starr, who rolled onto the apron for relative safety. Starr’s back in the ring, taking a rude clothesline before going back to WALTER’s legs, hanging it in the ropes ahead of a German suplex and a Figure Four! WALTER’s banging on the mat seemed to pass for a tap, as Starr again didn’t play to the bell… and just like at Carat, WALTER goes for a Gojira clutch. Except this time, Starr rolled back and got a near-fall, before WALTER went right back to the hold.
An escape gives Starr fresh hope, as he tried to Han Stansen his way past chops as he eventually felled WALTER… and now the crowd’s believing. It’s back to the Figure Four, but again it’s escaped as WALTER got to the rope. Perhaps out of ideas, Starr rolled outside, and grabbed the NXT UK title belt from ring announcer Butch, which led to some symbolism that irked so many.
WALTER’s response? A chop and a powerbomb… but Starr’s words turned the crowd against WALTER, as they began to call him a sell-out. The next response? WALTER dumping Starr deep into the crowd with a powerbomb. Good God. Referee Niall Fox used himself as a human shield to delay WALTER from getting to Starr again, but it’s for nought as the pissed off Austrian chopped Starr around, as the Dublin crowd got back onside. Foxy took a brutal shotgun dropkick into the corner, which’ll make you gasp too… as well as the Fire Thunder Driver that WALTER followed up with on Starr. Except there’s no ref! After getting the visual cover, WALTER tried to shake Foxy back to life, but Starr goes back to the belt, which he used as a shield for a WALTER chop, before he laid him out with it. Still, Foxy’s asleep, but Starr goes for the visual cover, which WALTER emphatically kicked out of at two. My God. He won’t stay down, even when it doesn’t matter!
That triggers another meltdown, and also has the crowd firmly behind Starr. Even more so when he threw the belt to WALTER… and Foxy fell for the Eddie Guerrero trick! Dublin erupts for the DQ win… but Jordan Devlin’s out there instantly to tell the referee what happened! History? Not quite. We’ve a restart, which Starr instantly tries to eke out a win with a roll-up, before he turned his sights to Devlin with a tope… which just opened the door for WALTER to pull Starr back into the ring with Gojira clutch… and as Devlin watched on emotionless, Starr fades away as the referee waves off the match.
The bit everyone’ll scroll down to read: This was the 12th time these two faced each other one-on-one, and I’m fairly confident in saying that this was perhaps the best of the bunch. Building off of their many prior encounters, Starr tried a different gameplan, which actually seemed to work. Was the crowd as heated as prior altercations? Perhaps not – OTT going without regular shows means that both men went into this as neither strong good guys nor bad, with Dublin at first not quite willing to forgive Starr, yet also not wanting to see WALTER back against the man he dethroned last year. That belt was the turning point though, and my word, how such a simple move could swing a crowd. Everything here was on point and the arrival of Jordan Devlin to tattle tale on David Starr made this even more exquisite. After the match, Starr laid out Foxy with a Han Stansen, furious at how he took someone else’s word to restart the match, as the show came to a close with the crowd roaring behind the irate Starr. It’s 26-0… and still the hunt continues. There be no fear here. *****
So yeah, that’s the end of Starr vs. WALTER in OTT (for now, at least). There’s just two matches left in 2019 as PROGRESS built up the feud again… and it ends rather weirdly…