WrestleCon’s rebadged supershow brought a little something for everyone, with names from all around the world colliding in a fun supercard.
If you’re wondering, this was renamed after HighSpots’ graphics designer Mark Hitchcock, who tragically passed away shortly before the show. We’re watching the live edit, so any roughness will likely be left in… Excalibur and Marty deRosa are doing commentary from what looked to be a packed out Sugar Mill!
Joey Janela vs. Penta el Zero M
There’s an issue before the match as there’s no bell. Seriously guys?
Janela doesn’t back down from Penta in the early going, and gets kicked in the groin for his troubles, before he ran into a chop as the Bad Boy struggled to get going. A dive from Penta’s punched away, as we’re right in with the move trolling as the Cornette Driver – an apron death valley driver – left Penta laying. A bicycle kick on the floor left Penta in the guard rails, but he’s right back on Janela with some chops, only for another bicycle kick to leave Penta laying. There’s a wacky lariat that gets a near-fall for Janela, but Penta’s in with a package piledriver… only for Janela to escape it as they move troll some more.
Once we’re done from that, a superkick from Janela gets a two-count, before some charges into the corner ended with a Penta lungblower as he came close. Penta looked to go up top, but Penelope Ford grabbed his leg for a distraction, allowing Janela to land a superplex as the Bad Boy almost took the W. Dives follow as an elbow suicida took Penta into the aisle, but another dive back inside is cut off with a superkick… and Penelope gets one too as Penta goes for an arm snap and a pumphandle driver for the win. A really solid opener, and we got a bell in time for the finish too! ***¼
It seems commentary has a walkie talkie – and we get to hear some production issues!
Joey Ryan vs. Jerry Lawler
Billed as the “Andy Kaufman Intergender Challenge”, this was effectively Joey Ryan dressed as Andy Kaufman doing a promo. Ryan had the Kaufman schtick down to a tee, teaching us about soap and razors, before he stripped off, revealing some long johns and blue shorts.
The open challenge was answered by… Jerry “The King” Lawler, whose appearance popped the crowd big time. Lawler rips on Ryan for being a knock-off Andy Kaufman, before promising to dish out a handful of what he dished out to Kaufman all those years ago. Ryan’s smart to it though – because piledrivers are banned in Louisiana, so Jerry can’t do that.
Ryan asks referee Chris Roberts (yes…) to start the match, so we find out what Jerry could do. Joey wants him to touch his dong, which Lawler did, sort of, when he kicked it. It had no effect, so he threw a fireball from his crown, prompting Roberts to DQ the King. Ah well!
Madison Eagles, Nicole Savoy, Shazza McKenzie, Tenille Dashwood & Tessa Blanchard vs. Caleb Konley, Jake Manning, Maxwell Jacob Friedman, Trevor Lee, Zane Riley
Intergender, lucha-rules ten-person tag action here – and apparently it’s how they’re getting around the commission rules. Trevor Lee big leagues it up to annoy the crowd, throwing in a little misogyny and the promise of an “Impact contract”.
MJF tries to hit on Dashwood, which gets the reaction you’d expect, especially when MJF looked for a kiss. She gets slapped, before Zane Riley gets shoved into a kiss on MJF instead as the match finally got going. Some headscissors from McKenzie took Konley into the ropes, allowing Tessa Blanchard to come in with some knees and an Ace crusher out of nowhere… only for Trevor Lee to rush the ring.
Madison Eagles wants no part of that, and pulls Lee down by his hair before tags took us to Manning and Savoy, with the latter reading his Manscout Manual… only for Savoy to steal it and (and his moves) by pulling him into a cross armbar. That led to the match breaking down into a wacky Human Centipede of submissions, ending when MJF wandered into the ring and punched it all free.
From there, the match turned into one big Parade of Moves, with Dashwood waiting for her moment as she suckered Jake Manning into the corner for a Tarantula! We’re into dives next as a tonne of topes left most of the match in the aisle, before Shazza’s crossbody off the top just about met Riley on the floor. Meanwhile, Manning throws Dashwood to the outside for a trust fall off the top, which wiped out his own team!
Left on his own, Manning’s taken into the turnbuckles by Dashwood, who followed in with the Emma-mite Sandwich, before another Parade of Moves ended with a huge German suplex from Eagles to Riley. More suplexes follow as I began to feel like they were perhaps going too fast to let stuff settle. Savoy tried a butterfly superplex, but it turned into a massive Tower of Doom, which crashed into an on-rushing MJF. Tessa Blanchard hits a flying lungblower – easily the best I’ve seen this week – but that just sparks yet another Parade as Riley’s teardrop suplex to McKenzie gave way to a butterfly suplex from Tenille on MJF, before a death valley driver from Konley left Dashwood laying.
Christ, this is like a game of Fire Pro with so many bodies left critical’d in the ring… and we’re not long for this world as the women lock in a quintet of submissions for a five-way tap out. This was fun, but my God, less is more, folks. Way too much going on for any of it to register. **¾
Jeff Cobb vs. Tomohiro Ishii
What in the world?! I totally missed this match being announced, which just shows how much is going on this weekend.
It’s a first time singles match this, with the pair having flirted in tags during last years World Tag League in New Japan. Mouth. Watering.
We start with the big lads trading shoulder blocks, with Cobb getting first blood as they worked up to relentless back-and-forth forearms as they wore each other down. Popping up from a slam, Ishii gets felled by some chops as Cobb stood tall, picking Ishii up again for a Samoan drop as we got a solid two-count. Finally Ishii fires back up, landing a slam of his own as the fightback continued in earnest with forearms and chops in the corner. They fought over a suplex, with Ishii being the one who gets it off after some back-and-forth, before he moved onto some headbutts as strikes became the order of the day.
Cobb uses his strength to haul Ishii up into a suplex, then again with some rolling German suplexes, bridging with the third one for a near-fall. A fourth one sent Ishii crashing into the turnbuckles, before a bridging pumphandle fallaway slam almost ended the match as Cobb was definitely imposing himself on the match. Ishii woke up after some more forearms though, and started to lean into Cobb’s shots, chasing him into the opposite corner for some lariats, before he went for a superplex, headbutting Cobb in the chest before he sent the Olympian crashing to the mat. Straight away though, Cobb hits an Exploder as the pair exchanged Fighting Spirit No-Sells, popping up from suplexes before a headbutt from Cobb left both men on the mat.
Ishii escapes a pop-up slam and instead takes an overhead belly-to-belly for a near-fall, before he escapes a Tour of the Islands and returned with a lariat as Cobb just about kicked out. From there, Cobb blocks a sliding lariat and sends Ishii into the corner, only for the Stone Pitbull to comeback with an enziguiri and the sheer drop brainbuster for the win. This was certainly something – worked at a more deliberate pace, pretty much everything landed, giving us exactly the match you expected from these two. Wow. ***¾
Bandido & Flamita vs. Rey Fenix & Rey Horus
It seemed that something broke down here, as Bandido and Flamita’s entrance video wasn’t shown… and both men were late to the party. To be fair, commentary had lost their running order too, so eh!
This match got quite a bit of buzz from the folks who were live in the Sugar Mill. Flamita blocked an early handspring cutter from Fenix as they didn’t exactly start slow, before Horus took Bandido down with a nice double-jump springboard armdrag as the lucha-style tags made for a breathless exchange. A 619 from Flamita knocks Horus into the ring for a missile dropkick, and we’re back to Flamita and Fenix, with the latter doing something absolutely ridiculous as he scored with an armdrag of his own off the ropes. Watch it, you’ll see…
Bandido tries to outdo Fenix with a back handspring to evade a clothesline as he ends up countering an Olympic slam into some headscissors instead. Fenix hits back with a waffling hook kick, then a powerbomb, only for Bandido to nail a Code Red as this remained insane. The pair trade chops and flurries of strikes, but Flamita rushes in with a baseball slide dropkick as Fenix was helpless in a Muta Lock.
An accidental dropkick from Fenix took out Bandido, leaving him in alone against both Reys, with Horus’ rana almost getting the job done. Horus continues with a plancha into a ‘rana on Bandido on the floor, followed by a moonsault from Flamita and… what the hell is Fenix doing? Double-jump senton into the pile… and that’s outdone by Bandido’s tornillo as all four men were left laying. Back in the ring, Flamita and Fenix go for a suplex, only for the latter to hit an overhand chop instead as they went back-and-forth again, with Flamita getting taken into the corner before hitting a bicycle kick to lay out Fenix… briefly, at least, as a satellite DDT almost got Flamita the W.
Horus nearly gets the win with a wicked wheelbarrow driver off the top rope on Flamita, but Bandido made the save, before an inverted torture rack into a GTS, followed by a powerbomb got another near-fall as Fenix this time made a save. Fenix gets off a spiking ace crusher to Bandido, who somehow kicked out, before crotching Flamita on the ropes as things looked to be building to an end…
HOLY HELL, REVERSE ‘RANA TO BANDIDO! Horus spiked him, but Flamita keeps it all alive, then slaps the taste out of the Reys, only to get an assisted tornado DDT from Horus as the Reys marched on. Horus crashes into Flamita the outside with a tope con giro that initially looked badly aimed, but the pair crash into the barriers, allowing Fenix to finish off Bandido with a spin-out muscle buster come Ki Krusher that led to fans throwing money in the ring. Yep, that was phenomenal, living up to all of the hype! ****½
Commentary took a step out for intermission – which turned out to just be the four guys picking up the money thrown into the ring – as the crowd chanted “you deserve it”. Hopefully that wasn’t their only pay-off!
Jason Cade, Matt Classic & Teddy Hart vs. Chico El Luchador, Psicosis & Super Crazy
Oh hai, Matt Classic! This is a weird collection of guys, with Matt Classic and Teddy Hart on the same team. Did someone hit the random key on Fire Pro?! Their opponents were the Mexicools, along with Chico el Luchador, who (because I don’t watch Being The Elite) is the comedy flavour of the month.
I’ll never stop popping for Matt Classic’s Iron Mike Sharpe-alike trunks. It’s Classic and Chico who get us underway, with Matt getting in a hiptoss and some lunging squats, before a butt bump took Chico into the corner as we’re getting quite the old school graps. After breaking free of a claw, Chico turns into a matador, before taking Classic outside for a faked out dive!
The pace slows down when Cade stretches out Psicosis, who replied with a shoulder tackle before nonchalantly kicking Cade in the back. More tags get us to Super Crazy and another guy who fits that name, Teddy Hart! God, I remember when Teddy promised a billion-disc shoot DVD set as a make good for being late for a 1PW interview years back. Of course, like parlaying his talent into the mainstream, that never happened…
What did happen though, was Teddy getting a Code Red out of the corner, before we went back to Classic and Chico. Yep, after ONE MOVE. Chico bounces off of Matt with a crossbody, and the bad guys (I guess) corner Chico as they trash talk him. Hart’s back in to dump Chico with a lumbar check, as the luchador is taking the brunt of the offence in this match. Cade rolls through a suplex into a Fisherman’s buster for a two-count, before he frog splashed onto Chico’s knees, as Super Crazy came back in to catch Cade with a huge pop-up facebuster. Hart’s back in as we’re seemingly under lucha rules, nailing a dropkick before Psicosis came in to boot Hart alongside a backbreaker.
More old-school stuff follows as Classic eats a double rolling leg-lock from the Mexicool tandem, as Chico took down Cade with a ‘rana before nailing a tope suicida! Teddy Hart’s next with a springboard moonsault to the floor, as Matt Classic wanted to get in on the act, falling off the apron into the pile underneath him. Back inside, Super Crazy’s all over Cade with a trifecta of moonsaults, just like ECW back in the day… but the last one misses, only for Cade to wander into a roll-up as Super Crazy snuck out the win. Commentary seemed to be caught out by that, but that was a fitting finish to a match that was enjoyable in flashes, but was just wacky from end-to-end. ***¼
Adam Brooks vs. Sammy Guevara vs. Shane Strickland vs. Will Ospreay
This was Ospreay’s second match of the night, having hot-footed it from EVOLVE a few hours earlier… and he’s in a four-way with a guy whom he can’t help but have good matches with in Adam Brooks.
Guevara and Ospreay suck each other’s fingers, just because, as Brooks and Strickland decide to kick them out of the ring. When we got going, the pace was predictably high, with a rope-running series ending with Brooks and Strickland catching each other’s kicks, before Guevara and Ospreay connected with dropkicks as they turned their sights back onto each other.
Ospreay and Guevara keep up the pace, rolling out of each other’s stuff, leading to Sammy’s satellite ‘rana actually taking Will to the outside, with the IWGP junior champ clutching at his shoulder in the process. This quickly becomes a revolving door of a match, with Strickland taking down Guevara with a cutter, before Brookes rushed in to kick him in the leg right as Excalibur accidentally trolled Jim Cornette from afar.
Brooks catches Ospreay in the corner, but pokes him in the eye as he went for a Cheeky Nando’s, only to fall to a handspring overhead kick as Ospreay nearly ended things. Guevara returned to try a superplex, but Strickland cuts it off as Ospreay instead clocked Sammy with a handspring knee to the back of Guevara’s head, before popping up Strickland into the corner as the wacky Tower of Doom was just about turned into a powerbomb from Ospreay.
All four men are back on their feet, but it’s Brooks and Ospreay who pair off, ending with a wild John Woo/shotgun dropkick from brooks and a Stundog Millionaire as this got wildly fast. Strickland drills Guevara with a knee before his dive to the outside was aborted, allowing Brooks to crash into the pair of them, before Ospreay’s Space Flying Tiger drop connects… with Will immediately checking to see if his head was still taped on.
Guevara crashes to the floor with a shooting star press into the pile, before Brooks distracts Guevara and the ref to kick him in the balls, as the Australian firmly turned things around. Strickland gets the same treatment as Brooks piles them up in the corner for a cannonball, before Ospreay completed the hattrick of “those kicked in the balls.” Yep, Will hits back with a Spanish Fly, because of course he’s hitting that, as Strickland stomped Guevara off the damned apron! Will gets a similar stomp as he’s hung up on the apron, before Brooks gets one more as Strickland almost won the match. Brooks mounts a fightback, clocking Strickland with a knee and a Meteora to the back of the head, before a Guevara curb stomp and a shooting star press almost led to the win…
…but Ospreay breaks it up and hits an OsCutter on Guevara instead for the win. That was alright, that. Lots of flips, lots of fun, but I’m going to be massively worried about Will’s taped-up neck all weekend, I fear… ***¾
How the hell did Chris Roberts land the gig for this match?!
Sami Callihan, Juice Robinson & Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. David Starr, Brian Cage & Minoru Suzuki
Can we quit hitting “random” on Fire Pro, guys? Still, it gave us this utterly bonkers match, so I cannot argue. Especially when Suzuki was a “surprise” sixth man. Yeah, the Sugar Mill loved to lift that roof, especially for Kaze ni Nare!
Ring announcer Corky messed up Starr’s nicknames, so you know what comes next… which was drowned out by Tanahashi offering an air guitar to the Product!
There’s a jump start, shockingly not from Suzuki, who ducked a baseball bat shot from Callihan and sent him to the outside as the beatings began! In the ring, Starr and Robinson went at it, with the latter hitting a backdrop suplex, then some Dusty punches as this crowd were eating it all up.
Starr comes back with a lariat, before Tanahashi sent him to the floor, only for Tana to get caught and turfed by Brian Cage, whose back seemed to be sporting as much tape as Will Ospreay’s neck. A 619 followed for Tanahashi, who came back with a crossbody and a low dropkick before sending himself into Cage with a plancha on the floor.
David Starr’s back for a tope, only to get dumped with a Callihan lariat as the crowd turned something fierce on him. The dives kept up though, with Cage nailing a tope con giro that a man of his size shouldn’t be able to do, as we built up to… no way in hell is Suzuki diving. Is he? Nah, he just rushes out and slaps Callihan, to a monster pop. Attaboy!
The Parade of Moves returns with a Cherry Mint DDT from Starr and an Awful Waffle froM Cage as Callihan ate a lot, but he’s back in with a mule kick as Callihan started to rip apart Starr’s face. Tanahashi capitalises with a slam and a flip senton for a near-fall, before a double back suplex with Juice left the Product reeling. Callihan’s back in to chants of “go away” as he worked over Starr, wrenching away on the fingers, before the Death Juice tandem squashed Starr in the corner.
A back senton from Juice is blocked with the knees of Starr, who started to crawl out for a tag, only to get backed into the wrong corner as Robinson made the dumb call to knock Suzuki off the apron. Eventually Cage gets the tag in as he peppers Juice with neckbreakers, before a gamengiri and a huge release German dumped Juice onto his neck.
Cage manages to powerbomb and slam Death Juice at the same time, but Tanahashi breaks up the cover, then tagged in to lay into Cage, hitting a series of Slingblades for a near-fall. Starr nails a Pretty Pumped as a Parade of Moves began, leading to Cage eating a swinging neckbreaker from Tanahashi… all while Suzuki watched on from the apron. He’s tagged in, as is Callihan, who spits at Suzuki… and I’m thinking impending funeral?
The pair tee off on each other, with Suzuki laughing off some bicycle kicks before sinking in a rear naked choke that Callihan bites out of. No bother, Suzuki just takes him down with a wicked Fujiwara armbar, and that’s an instant tap! This was wacky and all sorts of fun – at least until Callihan escaped an attempt to break his arm at the end. I love these random tags, especially when it’s teams you’ll probably never see again! ***¾
The post-match saw Suzuki and Tanahashi stare down, as the pair broke down into forearms and elbows, before a simple headbutt sent the Ace packing… where Suzuki was more than willing to help him with a brawl to the back. Standard!
Golden☆Lovers (Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi) vs. Chuck Taylor & Flip Gordon
This was the Golden☆Lovers versus Taylor and TBC (replacing Beretta, who’s on the shelf). Chuckie T came out with a live band, then announced the Swamp Monster as his partner… except the Swamp Monster was instantly tossed to the floor.
Plan B: Orange Cassidy! Except he was so care-free, he didn’t turn up. Plan C then? Dan Barry! The Officer meets a similar fate, as he was thrown out, so Chuckie begs for Beretta… who is still in a cast. Rocky Romero comes out to stop Beretta from undoing his cast, so we’re up to plan… E? Flip Gordon! Yeah, the boos kinda told you how much the crowd liked that. As did the chants of “earth is round”. Hah! They stitch in some of the Bullet Club/All In stuff, as Chuckie tells Flip that if he helps them win, he’s booked at All In. Yeah, Flip suddenly was willing to help there!
Omega’s wrestling in biker shorts it seems, as commentary joked he’d left his kick pads in Japan. Gordon does his dancing handstand, which just draws in Ibushi to kick him in the gut, massively unimpressed by that stuff. A dropkick gives Flip a response though, as both of the Golden☆Lovers went outside for a tope con giro out of Gordon! Taylor tags in and takes Omega into the corner, following up with an elbow drop for a two-count as Omega was left isolated for a spell. A flip senton off the ropes gets a two-count, as does Taylor’s equivalent, before Omega rebounded with a nice and simple abdominal stretch. Beretta wanders out, shirtless, to watch from ringside, and do his best Bobby Gunns impression from the apron.
Flip gets bullied into smoking, just as Omega escapes the abdominal stretch, before enziguiri’ing the cigarette out of Taylor’s mouth. We’re back to Gordon and Ibushi now, with Kota kicking Flip for a standing moonsault, before Omega’s Finlay roll and a pair of springboard moonsaults almost put the flipper away. A Kotaro Krusher follows for Taylor, as the Golden☆Lovers were on top, at least until Gordon nails a reverse Finlay roll and a standing shooting star to get a two-count on Ibushi.
Omega’s back to Dragon suplex Chuckie, then Gordon, as Omega set up for a One Winged Angel… but Gordon escaped and shoved him into some superkicks. Ibushi avoids similar, nailing a backflip kick to both Chuckie and Flippy, as Taylor ended up taking a powerbomb/German suplex combo as a set up for the Golden Trigger.
Flip stops that with a springboard crossbody, to the tune of some boos, so Gordon nails some shotgun dropkicks to try and win them over, before flipping into a half-nelson suplex by Ibushi. The referee’s badly out of position as Taylor nails a low blow and a roll-up for a near-fall, before he jack-knifed out of the Golden Star Powerbomb for another two-count. A desperation head kick from Ibushi left Taylor down for long enough for the Golden☆Lovers to try the Golden Shower, but Gordon breaks it up.
Taylor instantly capitalises with Sole Food to Ibushi, before a 450 from Flip almost earned the upset, then again with a Falcon arrow as Omega rushes in with a V-trigger. The Golden Star Powerbomb’s again countered, this time into Code Red, as Ibushi almost took the fall, only for the Golden☆Lovers to hit back instantly with the Golden Trigger to take the win. Fun stuff to wrap up the main event, albeit with a little too much shtick for my tastes. ***¾
Post-match, Omega put over Chuckie T for almost sneaking away with the win, before telling Flip that he was a little stupid for thinking he’d get cheered in this match. Omega’s speech closed out the show, before Chuck Taylor vowed to make the Golden☆Lovers vs. Best Friends happen at some point once Beretta was healed.
The Mark Hitchcock Memorial Supershow was a joy to watch – like most of these shows, it was hit and miss in places, but as a complete product, this was an enjoyable three hours. If you’re being forced to cherry-pick on Mania weekend, watch the lucha tag, the main event and the semi-main trios match… but this is one you should block time out for.