The wXw Women’s Championship Tournament kicked off on the latest episode of Shotgun, as the FAN fallout continued!

As ever we open with the “please watch this show last” spoiler warning, before being taken to footage from after FAN where A4, Jurn Simmons David Starr and Ilja Dragunov bumping fists a la the Shield as they vowed to take on RISE. Ilja cut a promo after, declaring that he’s going to win the wXw Unified World Wrestling title… and that whilst they may have a checkered past, they’re going to be invincible.

Next up, David Starr and Jurn Simmons – Massive Product – pat each other’s back after what we just saw. They agree to cheat in matches… if it means that they’re going to win matches. Let it be!

Da Mack. Is. Walking!

Sebastian Hollmichel is backstage with Ilja Dragunov – our new number one contender! Ilja reckons that the milestones he’s recently reached are the things any elite athlete strives for… even if it’s meant having to overcome a rocky road. After decrying Bad Bones as an opportunist, Dragunov says he’s the opposite… and he’s going to make sure that Klinger’s pack (RISE) won’t overcome him.

That title match, by the way, is going to be on the middle Saturday of next month’s World Tag Team League!

Cue ear-worm time as we get the run through of the rosters for the World Tag Team League shows… and more threat of karaoke. Femmes Fatales 2017 will feature Alex Windsor, Alpha Female, Jinny, Laura di Matteo, Melanie Gray, Pauline, Toni Storm and Viper. Meanwhile the World Tag Team League competitors will feature A4 (Absolute Andy & Marius al-Ani), EYFBO (Angel Ortiz & Mike Draztik), Massive Product (Jurn Simmons & David Starr), RINGKAMPF (WALTER & Timothy Thatcher), Spirit Squad (Kenny & Mikey), the Briscoes (Mark Briscoe & Jay Briscoe), the Rottweilers (Homicide & Low Ki) and wXw tag champs the Young Lions (Tarkan Aslan & Lucky Kid).

Next is Dirty Dragan on his phone backstage. He’s far from relishing calling Emil Sitoci to tell him he lost to Francis Kaspin… and his lies are quickly seen through. Sitoci chews him out and hangs up… leading to Despondent Dragan.

Alpha Kevin’s holding a kettle. Seriously! He gets out his phone too and throws it aside, just like Dragan did. Die Keiler walk in – the pairing of Veit Müller and Jan Dietrich. They try to bully Kevin into taking his spot… but Kim Ray makes the save, and that’s apparently a match for later tonight.

By later tonight, I mean… now!

Die Keiler (Veit Müller & Jan Dietrich) vs. Kim Ray & Alpha Kevin
We’re going back to late August in Münster for this, and the latest push (of sorts) for the team whose name translates literally as the Boars. We start with Kevin and Dietrich… as Jan easily shoves Kevin into the corners. Kevin gets in some punches as commentary tells us the story we just saw, before a big forearm knocks Dietrich into the corner as Kevin has some anger to unload.

So Veit Müller tags in, as does Kim Ray, but Veit takes Kim into the corner by the hair as he wears him down with headlocks. Of course, Kim gets free and after a kick he tries for a suplex… but Müller escapes and takes down Kim with a cross chop instead.

A dropkick from Kim barely takes Veit into the corner, but that back suplex gets him off his feet… as does a PK, but Müller’s able to kick out. Alpha Kevin returns to hit a double back elbow, before some Dusty punches accompany the usual run-down of tour dates. Veit makes a blind tag in the middle of this as Dietrich comes in and picks up Kevin for a double-team ushigoroshi that gets the Boars of Hamburg a near-fall.

Jan’s all over Kevin, but he takes time to taunt Kim… and manages to shrug off some chops as Müller returns with a simple punch and slam for another two-count. Die Keiler double-team thanks to Kim Ray inadvertently tying up the ref… only for Kevin to fight back… and get flattened with a pancake pair of clotheslines. Still, Kevin stays in it with Kim Ray leading the rallying call… but he’s knocked off the apron as Kevin’s press-slammed into Veit’s knees for an elevated gutbuster that gets yet another near-fall.

Die Keiler’s firmly in control here, with Müller clubbering Kevin in the ropes, before a sunset flip nearly gets Kevin the win against the run of play. He’s able to make the hot tag to Kim Ray though, who cleared house with flying clotheslines before dumping Dietrich with an Exploder suplex. A diving dropkick into the corner levels Veit, but die Keiler keep on top with a double-team stalling suplex, before they looked to finish off Ray…

Except Kim hits a knee and makes the tag back out to Kevin, who quickly falls into a double-team full nelson powerbomb as die Keiler get the win. This was a fun match to establish die Keiler – and their unique finisher – in wXw. ***¼

Kevin’s back with Sebastian Hollmichel, and he’s got that list about Melanie Gray for Seb. We don’t see the pros and cons, but apparently it’s settled Kevin’s mind, and before we can go any further, they’re called to a meeting. Except he leaves the list behind…

Next is the RISE dressing room with Ivan Kiev and Pete Bouncer. Ivan’s gazing at his newly-won Shotgun title, but you get the sense that Pete’s feeling left out- especially since he’s the guy who’s been taken the losses for RISE. The pep talk from Kiev doesn’t seem to have effect, especially when the “individual small losses” were all from the same man.

Da Mack vs. Koray
We’re back to Münster for this as commentary seems to think this is the start of the show? Koray fights out of a front facelock as Mack uses a mixture of speed and technical moves to frustrate the Berliner.

A leaping neckbreaker gets Mack a pinning attempt, before the double-leapfrog into a dropkick puts Koray down once more… but Koray mounts Mack and lays into him with a series of forearms from above.

Mack tries to chop back, but Koray’s even to it all and ends up knocking Mack to the mat with clubbing forearms. Eventually Mack returns some of those favours, laying in with double-handed chops and other strikes in the corner… but again, the ref stops him and that leads to a sneak attack from Koray, which Mack shrugs off and takes Koray down with an overhead belly-to-belly.

Again though, Koray comes back and chokes away on Mack in the ropes – and this is an outing that’s doing little to increase the stock of a man who has fallen quite a lot in the last 12 months. That stock nearly fell further when he took a nasty landing out of a throw into the corner, before he stuffs a backslide attempt… only to get slammed ahead of what looked to be a chokehold on Mack.

More punches to Mack’s gut lead to a pancake for a near-fall for Koray… but he rebounds with a boot to the face before hitting a Slingblade and some chops, before an enziguiri leads to an attempted suplex… that Koray reverses. Instead, Mack counters the counter and hits a cross-legged Fisherman’s driver for a near-fall, before the springboard enziguiri out of the corner almost led to a Stunner…

…but instead Koray pushes away and spikes Mack with a DDT for a near-fall! Koray tries to finish him off with a punt to the head, but Mack moves away and hits the Mack Magic ‘cutter for the win. Technically it’s a win for Mack, but this seemed to do more for Koray than anything else. ***

We’re up next with Thomas Giesen, who’s with Pauline ahead of the start of the wXw women’s championship tournament. She gives her promo in French, and it’s not translated, so we’ll skip this.

Bobby Gunns has another Smoking Break, where he gloats over beating Tim Thatcher at FAN. He’s getting cocky over beating 50% of RINGKAMPF, and thinks that he’s the second coming of Billy Robinson. Bobby wants WALTER to complete the set… and in Frankfurt, the match is set!

We get graphics for other matches on the September 30 show in Frankfurt – a wXw feature event – as RISE take on wXw in a Survivor Series-ish elimination match: Bad Bones, Ivan Kiev, Pete Bouncer and the Young Lions vs. Ilja Dragunov, Jurn Simmons, David Starr and A4. Also, there’s a Women’s Championship Tournament match with Melanie Gray vs. Martina; Alexander James vs. Timothy Thatcher; Da Mack vs. Avalanche and the just-announced Bobby Gunns vs. WALTER.

Melanie Gray’s got a promo now for her match with Pauline… she’s excited because the women’s championship has been her goal since day one… but Thomas Giesen’s more interested in what’s going on with her and Alpha Kevin. He just had to go and spoil it all, eh?

The Young Lions are in the RISE locker room next – they’re trying to big themselves up about the upcoming World Tag Team League, but Bad Bones comes in and asks what’s up with Pete Bouncer taking the losses. Tarkan Aslan says he just needs more time, but it’s clear Bones isn’t happy…

wXw Women’s Championship Tournament: Pauline vs. Melanie Gray
The inaugural tournament match closes this episode of Shotgun, and we start with Gray taking down Pauline with a waistlock, before Pauline’s charged into the corner.

Commentary tells us that this is only Pauline’s second match in Germany, and she’s quickly taken down with a swinging side slam as Mella follows up with a back senton. Apparently this is a “double round robin” tournament, with 3 points for a win and just the one for a draw… so there’s plenty more to come here!

A low dropkick from Pauline takes Gray down, as a follow-up stretch nearly gets a pinfall over Gray… but Pauline instead follows up by draping her across the middle ropes and lands some double knees. Back-and-forth charges in the corners follow, but Pauline edges ahead and blasts into a downed Mella with double knees.

That angers Gray into a comeback, kicking Pauline into the corner ahead of some running knees of her own! Gray misses a shoulder charge though, before being rolled up for a near-fall as the Frenchwoman dropkicked Gray to the outside… then heads up top for a body press!

Pauline gets a near-fall out of that, but the two exchange chops back in the ring, before Pauline dumps Gray on her beck with a German suplex… but they’re too close to the ropes so it’s just a near-fall. A leap off the top rope goes wrong for Pauline, who turns it into a spinebuster on the way down, before rolling Pauline into the Mella-Dram (cloverleaf) for the quick submission.

That’s three points for Melanie after a decent match – one that perhaps looked a little shaky at points (I’m still wincing at that German suplex), but given the time they had, this was a good start. ***

We’ll keep a league table updated after every Shotgun/Feature Event, but right now it’s:

1. Melanie Gray (1-0; 3pts)
2. Jinny (0-0; 0pts)
2. Martina (0-0; 0pts)
4. Pauline (0-1; 0pts)

That’s all for this week’s Shotgun – a good show that packed a LOT into the 48 minutes, as the next feature event at the end of the month got a pretty solid card… just so you can’t even begin to think that wXw’s coasting going into next month’s World Tag Team League. On top of that, they’re throwing some deliberate seeds into the ground with regards to RISE.

Even if you only watch the weekly episodes of Shotgun, wXw is a group that you really ought to keep your eye on. Producing storylines and good matches with perhaps less time than other promotions… why aren’t you watching? Shotgun (and the feature events) are available via wXwnow.de and also (delayed) on the HighSpots Wrestling Network.