With Hamburg getting a loaded show this weekend, Shotgun puts the finishing touches to a heavily-stacked card, while Lucky Kid claims his shot at Bobby Gunns.
We’re still in Cologne this week, with Jeremy Graves on the English call, hyping up Lucky Kid’s Shotgun title match later tonight – but first, a look at how Bobby Gunns defended it against Christopher Daniels earlier this month.
From there, it’s a Smoking Break with Bobby Gunns, where he mocked Christopher Daniels by saying he’ll get somewhere big in a few years… perhaps after he trains at the wXw academy. Burn!
The finish of Toni Storm’s title defence from Superstars of Wrestling follows, and Toni’s backstage with Thommy Giesen. She’s going to come full circle in Hamburg this weekend – Storm’s wXw debut was against Kay Lee Ray at 2015’s Superstars of Wrestling show, and now they’ll match up again with Toni’s title on the line… hopefully with a different result.
Clips from Alexander James’ win over Mil Muertes follow, and that takes us to our opening match of the show:
Alexander James vs. Jay Skillet
Skillet was still happy go lucky here, with him not quite having grown into the whole belt stealing/Fresher Than You thing here.
They keep things basic early, as James looked to work the wrist early on, but Skillet’s able to hit back with some headscissors before scoring with a neckbreaker. A flying back elbow out of the corner keeps James down, but the American responds by tripping him up as he resumed the arm work, wrenching away on it as preparation for an eventual submission.
A DDT from Skillet gets him back into it, but he’s forced to shove away from the Rains of Castamere and land a crossbody instead as James instead was met with a double stomp to the back. Jay followed up with a Michinoku driver for a near-fall, but James goes back to the arm again, hyperextending it before teasing the Kings Landing DDT… with Skillet countering into a brainbuster for another near-fall.
James returns fire, sending Skillet onto the apron before dragging him back in with the Rains of Castamere (Tower of London), ahead of the Kings Landing DDT for the win. Short, but as competitive as you expect out of Shotgun matches, as Alexander James got a win heading into his title shot in Hamburg. ***
Post-match, James grabs the microphone and taunts Ilja Dragunov, asking if he was at home… before comparing Skillet to Dragunov’s “bastard son”. James promised to bring Dragunov to us… by mocking the Torpedo Moscau, and here comes Dragunov to send the American scurrying away!
The usual snarling, intense Dragunov promo follows as he berated James for pretending to be him, calling him a “tiny rat trying to crawl into the main event”, before leaving him with a final message. I keep saying this, but in any language, Ilja’s intensity and star power comes across.
The finish from the mixed tag at Superstars of Wrestling is shown again, and we see Killer Kelly running into Melanie Gray backstage. Gray still has a bee in her bonnet over it – and it’s something that Kelly’s had enough of… so much so she walks away and slams the door on Melanie. Metaphorically and literally, perhaps?
A video package for the latest round of Absolute Andy vs. Marius al-Ani follows, complete with plenty of photos of them in happier times as A4. I forgot Marius actually did the paper-size-pun. The story’s told through to World Tag Team League last year, and their skirmishes since then, up until their most recent outing at Superstars of Wrestling.
They turn to the tag title scene next, replaying Jay FK’s assault, before we go backstage to Julian Nero who’s still complaining about catering! Ivan Kiev and Pete Bouncer wander in, and they have an idea to help them get the tag titles back… but Monster Consulting want to do it themselves first, particularly because Avalanche has a feeling RISE had a hand in messing around with the tag titles two years in a row. This ends up as Nero setting up Jay FK vs. RISE – with the winners facing Monster Consulting for the titles.
An interview with Zack Sabre Jr. follows, as he faces WALTER on Friday… Sabre reckons he’s untouchable lately, but it’s still a privilege to face off with the Austrian as the main event of the first Hamburg show repeats itself on the 20th show. That’s quite the full circle booking!
wXw Shotgun Championship: Lucky Kid vs. Bobby Gunns (c)
Main event time now, as Lucky Kid gets a pretty instant cash-in for the Shotgun title…
Gunns shoots at Lucky from the off, grabbing a waistlock before taking Lucky down in a double armbar. Commentary wonders out loud if Lucky knows he got this match because of extra help from Tarkan Aslan – the man whom Lucky feels he cannot do without – as Gunns keeps up his technical start, taking his challenger into the ropes for a cheeky uppercut. Lucky tries to stuff Gunns by clinging onto his leg, and those tactics certainly worked to get under Gunns’ skin, and trip Bobby to the mat as the pair end up sitting down… exciting Lucky Kid as he thinks he’s made another new friend… until Bobby grabs his RISE finger and wrenches away on it.
A pair of low dropkicks takes Gunns outside as Lucky fakes out a dive and… BLEH! Gunns returns with a PK that misses, as Lucky shoves him into the corner, only to be met with a flying back elbow as Tarkan Aslan tried to get the referee to stop those face-washing boots from the champion. Instead, Gunns followed through with a kick to take Tarkan down, allowing Lucky Kid to get back into it… but he shifts his focus and tends to Aslan instead, rather than stay on top of Gunns.
Lucky goes to the back for some help, bringing out the first aiders as he seemingly worried about Aslan’s recent concussion… but perhaps helping him up wasn’t such a good idea, as carrying Aslan to the back led to a count-out. If you didn’t know the story with Lucky Kid, you’d hate that finish, but as a TV match, this was fine… I just wish it went a little longer and had a proper finish. ***
They run through the line-up for Hamburg:
Jay FK (Jay Skillet & Francis Kaspin) vs. RISE (Ivan Kiev & Pete Bouncer)
wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship: Alexander James vs. Ilja Dragunov (c)
wXw Shotgun Championship: Lucky Kid vs. Bobby Gunns (c)
wXw Women’s Championship: Kay Lee Ray vs. Toni Storm (c)
Marius al-Ani vs. Absolute Andy
Dirty Dragan Trial Series: Veit Müller vs. Dirty Dragan
LuFisto vs. Killer Kelly
David Starr vs. Julian Pace
Zack Sabre Jr. vs. WALTER
Nine matches… that is an absolutely loaded line-up, and one that is sure to deliver live and when it hits wXwNOW.de next week.
A video package for WALTER vs. Zack Sabre Jr. follows, recapping how wXw’s going full circle – with clips from their first Hamburg match in 2012, and their subsequent matches around the world. From there, it’s an interview with Alexander James, as he promises to take delight in breaking Ilja Dragunov’s wrist and shattering his world. It’s a nice, calm, measured promo that showed James’ confidence in himself without being overstated or braggadocious.
That’s all folks, all the boxes are checked for this weekend’s feature event – have a blast if you’re going to Hamburg… otherwise, hopefully Monday night rolls around quickly!