We’ve got a long one from wXw’s Best of 2005, as Super Dragon took Steve Douglas to overtime.
Andy Jackson introduces the fourth match on this list from the Burning! double header… this one’s from night one on November 12, 2005. That looks like it was a hell of a pair of shows, eh? Anyway, Andy tells us there was an AOL IM exchange with Super Dragon before the show, telling the wXw office that he was going to try every move he knew. Let’s see…
Iron Man: Steve Douglas vs. Super Dragon
Super Dragon got showered with streamers. At least it wasn’t that one guy that Botchamania made famous…
We’ve an hour time limit for this, but neither man is in a rush to get going. The opening lock-up goes nowhere, before the pair roll around all four sides of the ring from the next lock-up. The tie-up’s kept on as they throw the other to the mat, then to the outside, before they fought each other to get back in. Super Dragon slaps, then threw down Douglas from a waistlock, before going to the leg as the hitch-pitched Essen crowd mocked Stevie’s name. A Dragon sleeper (aha) from Stevie goes nowhere, as Super Dragon backed up and rolled him down into a seated surfboard, eventually giving us a rope break. Another stiff palm strike sends Stevie flying to the outside, before the pair worked in a bridging knuckle lock, which Douglas tries to break, but the escape doesn’t break the hold as the pair almost pin each other. Eventually, Super Dragon flips into a cross armbar on Douglas, but Douglas countered with a bow-and-arrow hold, ending in the ropes as we crossed the ten minute mark. That flew by.
A trip from Super Dragon sees him return the bow-and-arrow hold, but it’s quickly broken… so he drops an elbow on Stevie’s knee and grabbed a hold, while fending off Stevie’s attempts to break it apart. When Stevie succeeded, he just gets chopped on the back, before getting trapped in a Figure Four for what felt like an eternity. Some short-range knee strikes take Stevie into the corner for a slingshot dropkick, before a leg lock continued Dragon’s journey through his List o’ Moves. Another back chop and stomps keep Stevie in the ropes, before Dragon ducked an enziguiri and ended up eating a thrust kick for a two-count. Douglas tries to throttle Dragon, then dragged him away from the ropes as he pulled him in for a tied up curb stomp. That’s good for another two-count, before Super Dragon was taken into the ropes, where Douglas’ valet Shadow did some choking to help Stevie towards another near-fall.
A Butterfly hold from Douglas has Dragon in trouble, as did a running stomp off the ropes, before some back and forth led to Dragon getting rocked with some elbows. Chops follow, before Dragon’s body scissors and tiltawhirl headscissors out of the corner had Douglas back on the ropes, with a rear spin kick taking us to the 20 minute mark. Douglas rolls outside as Super Dragon teased a dive, eventually taking to the skies with a flip senton off the top rope after Douglas had been knocked off the apron. There’s some fighting in the crowd that the hard camera had a time keeping up with, as Stevie willingly broke up the count-out so he could keep scrapping… throwing in a leap off of a raised area to boot.
Heading back inside, Dragon’s met with some chops as he’s kept by the ropes, but hung back to avoid a dropkick as he then rolled Douglas down for a receipt from that earlier curb stomp. He gets a two-count from it, then trapped Douglas with figure four headscissors, eventually ending as Douglas rolled to the ropes… so Dragon just threw some punched before the break was forced. Kawada-style kicks follow on Douglas, who’s then kicked back into the corner as a Tree of Woe and the ol’ gas pedal increased Stevie’s woes. A back suplex comes next for a two-count, but Douglas returned as he faked out a dropkick… then hit a crossbody into the ropes to send both himself and Super Dragon tumbling to the floor. The pair trade chops on the floor, going around ringside, with Super Dragon edging ahead as they continued to fight under the hard camera, stopping to offer mercy as we pass the halfway mark.
A cheapshot sees Dragon throw Douglas back in, but Stevie beats him to the punch, dropping him with a slam ahead of a legdrop for a near-fall. Douglas then tries for a Sharpshooter, but stopped short of rolling Super Dragon over, before opting to trap him in a STF instead. Dragon’s saved by the ropes, so Stevie goes in with a chinlock that almost forces the submission… but Dragon’s arm doesn’t fall for a third time as he fights free. Only to get decked with a lariat off the ropes as Stevie goes back to the chinlock, inching his way to the ropes as he got his feet on the ropes for extra leverage. That almost gets Stevie a pin, but Dragon kicks out, only to get elbowed back down as another chinlock followed. Again, Dragon escaped, but gets caught in a Dragon sleeper, which he deftly reverses, countering with an inverted suplex before a Dragon sleeper ended with Stevie snapmaring free and hitting a stomp. It gets him a delayed two-count, before he snatched the first fall at the 36:54 mark, pinning Super Dragon with a cravat roll-up.
Dragon fights back from the restart, hitting a forearm out of the corner before firing off some chops. Corner-to-corner forearms lead to a clothesline that flipped down Douglas, but all of a sudden Shadow wants to come in for a rave, which distracts the referee from making the pin. Super Dragon goes after her… Stevie makes a save as referee Tassilo Jung got KO’d by Shadow, therefore unable to count the pin on a nice German suplex that would have levelled things up. Shadow’s still in the ring and hits a ‘rana in full view of the ref… who just pulls her off of Super Dragon and ejects her. No DQ, though…
We pass 40 minutes in as both men are getting back to their feet, with Douglas booting Super Dragon away in the corner before a version of what’s probably better known today as a Kanuki suplex threw Dragon into the corner. It gets Douglas a two-count, as does a Saito suplex, before Douglas “argued with the ref” to hide some sneaky choking with his shin. Super Dragon gets free and hits a buckle bomb, but can’t make the cover before he escaped some Angle Slam attempts, then dropped Dragon with a pair of half-nelson suplexes to stretch the lead to 2-0 at 43:52.
With Dragon still down, Douglas tries to go for more pins to extend the lead, looking to capitalise on his previous efforts. When that didn’t work, he takes Dragon into the corners, looking to throw his head into the turnbuckles ahead of a back superplex… except Super Dragon elbowed him down and followed with a corkscrew moonsault. He goes back up for a flying stomp to the back, and manages to pull it back to 2-1 at 46:37. Super Dragon’s got just under 15-minutes left to at least level it as Stevie Douglas needed water… On their knees, Douglas and Dragon trade headbutts, then palm strikes as Super Dragon pushed ahead. Elbows take Douglas onto the apron as a slingshot stomp from Dragon took them both outside, leading to a delayed two-count once Super Dragon was able to bring it back inside. Douglas charges Dragon into the corner as we hit the final ten minutes, with kicks to the back keeping Dragon down ahead of a chinlock.
It’s turned into bodyscissors as Douglas tried to roll Dragon into a three-count, but only got two-counts before dropping him to the mat for another two-count. Rather than follow up, Douglas wanted to claim a fall via TKO, but Dragon gets up as Douglas just tried to knock him silly. Kicks take Dragon back inside, but Dragon’s up as Stevie looked to go off the top rope, eventually bringing Douglas down with a belly-to-belly superplex for a near-fall. We enter the final five minutes from there, with Douglas heading outside… so Dragon leaps off the top onto him by the bar. Rushing Douglas back in gets a two-count as Douglas got his hand to the rope, before he snapped back in with a Praying Mantis Bomb… spiking Dragon on his head, but unable to make the cover either. When he does, Dragon gets a shoulder up in time, as the crowd chanted for Dragon’s Psycho Driver finisher. It’s the only move left!
Heading into the final minute, Dragon clings to Douglas’ heel to stop him scaling the ropes, and then put a beating to him with some right hands. He goes for the Psycho Driver, but instead opts for some Kawada kicks as the ten-second countdown led to Dragon hitting said move before a fast-count made damn sure the tying fall got in under the buzzer at 59:57. Cue overtime!
The crowd, some fifteen years ahead of GCW, called for one more hour. Nope, instead we get sudden death! Both men are beyond spent, as they take time getting to their feet for the restart. When we did get going, Dragon lifts Douglas to the top rope for an avalanche Psycho Driver, but Douglas countered out with a swinging DDT off the top rope. It gets him a two-count, before a pair of lariats spun Dragon to the mat, with a third getting another near-fall. From there, Douglas lifts up Dragon for a Victory Roll, but Dragon slips out and hits another Psycho Driver for a near-fall. Dragon seemingly has one more move up his sleeve, but Douglas crotches him on the buckles, then met him up top as he hit a Saito superplex… and that was enough to get the match-winning fall.
Look, iron man matches are an acquired taste. You essentially have to be invested in the story (be it the feud, or the circumstances that led to it) – and if you’re watching this in a vacuum after the fact, the match needs to be able to stand on its own. For me, this started off well, dragged a little in the middle and just about picked up at the end, A product of its time.
Result: Steve Douglas beat Super Dragon 3-2 in 66:07 (***)