Pro Wrestling Guerrilla
July 24, 2015
What better way to get you ready for this weekend’s highly-anticipated PWG Battle of Los Angeles 2015 than reviewing the most recent PWG show — PWG Threemendous IV!
Team Tremendous vs. The World’s Cutest Tag Team
Before the bell, you get a legitimate laugh out loud moment from me when the Buddy Cops bagged and tagged Joey Ryan’s Blow Pop after it fell on the floor. Funny as hell. What followed was the wrestling equivalent of a Jackson Pollock inspired painting — it was a mess, but someone is going to love it. It was a series of awesome spots and double team moves that you’d come to expect from a Tremendous match. But like pretty much every Tremendous match, it didn’t make an ounce of sense. Team Tremendous pulls off the upset when they hit Book’em Dan-O on Joey. You know what, I oddly enjoyed this slop. **3/4
Brian Cage vs. Johnny Gargano
I expected to love this match — and at times, I did. Gargano and Cage would find their groove and then they’d botch an important spot and they’d lose me. Rinse and repeat that process three times and you had a clunky roller coaster ride that started out hot, finished cold, and throughout, was up and down. It just never really came together in any way, even though there was clearly some potential there. **1/2
Andrew Everett vs. Rich Swann
I feel like this is something I would otherwise see at a Full Impact Pro Show in front of 45 people that stumbled over from The Castle in Ybor City. That isn’t to say it was bad, it was just not quite I was expecting or wanting in a PWG show. It ran long and was, a match — it happened. Andrew Everett wins with a shooting star press. **1/4
Tommaso Ciampa vs. Trevor Lee
The match started off hot and got right into the action and kept the pace high mostly throughout. Both guys had a solid performance here, but it never quite got to that next level. Both guys dished out plenty of ridiculousness, but one of the highlights came when Ciampa hit an over the shoulder belly-to-back driver on Lee that looked really nasty. The crowd interaction was high here, too, with the crowd brawling making for some good easter eggs, such as Meltzer looking ridiculous. In the end, Trevor Lee wins with the package piledriver rollup for the win. By the end, this came off as a very solid match with some quality spots, stiff shots, and steady high pace. ***1/4
Chris Hero vs. ‘Speedball’ Mike Bailey
Hero with the throwback Seattle Supersonic ring gear, love it. I’m also really enjoying Hero embrace the cranky old veteran of the Indie scene gimmick, which should provide a great in-ring story with the upstart, Bailey. After a breakout performance at Mystery Vortex III losing in valiant match I gave ****1/2 stars to, Speedball versus Hero writes itself with the old curmudgeon systematically taking apart the youngster and having the advantage in every way.
Early on, Hero dominates Speedball, but as the bout gets to the later stages, Bailey proves to be his equal, matching all of Hero’s advantages with his guile and determination. Bailey sneaks out a win after eating several roaring elbows with a rollup. The Reseda crowd pops big and Speedball gets his big victory. Many are going to consider this Mike Bailey’s star making performance…and maybe it is, but I felt the Roderick Strong match from Mystery Vortex III told the better story, had a more engaged crowd, and was paced a bit higher. ****1/4
Ricochet vs. Akira Tozawa
Tozawa back in PWG is just awesome. During his excursion as a youngster, it was here, in Southern California, where Tozawa broke out and was on the path to the insanely charismatic and widely recognized top notch in-ring performer you see today. Before they get to the meat of the match, Ric and Tozawa hug it out and go through a series of greatest hits and crowd popping spots that everyone wanted to see. Once the match gets going though, both guys set everything aside and really put on a strong performance. Tozawa’s enthusiasm is akin to coming back to college for Homecoming Weekend. He’s completely immersed and the crowd embraces. He’s having a great time. This doesn’t quite hit Match of the Month type levels before Ricochet wins with Vertigo, but its still really solid with Tozawa’s enthusiasm permeating the crowd making it a respectable, fun affair. ****
Post match, Super Dragon comes out and destroys everything, including but not limited to destroying Candice with two of the nastier curb stomps you will ever see when he puts her face into the bottom turnbuckle. The Bucks join the party complete in Super Dragon masks themselves. Ricochet, Tozawa, Joey Ryan, Gargano, and Speedball all eat a beatdown before we bleed into the main event.
The Young Bucks vs. Angelico & Jack Evans
Los Gueros del Cielo hit the ring to save the day and the main event begins right away. This is a typical PWG funhouse special. They didn’t even let it look like it’d be anything else for even a second. Evans and Angelico flip flop around like a fish out of water and the Bucks superkick and go through their greatest hits. This stuff is never not good, especially when the crowd is so invested in the Bucks right now. The Bucks control the match for much of the middle portion before the hot tag. As you’d expect, the moves are big, the action is often hot, and everything is crisp. Indie Taker from the ring to the floor popped me out of my chair in the final stages of the match. More Bang For Your Buck comes a moment later to give the Bucks the win. You know what you’re getting here…this is the type of shit I always enjoy. ****1/4
Final Thoughts: PWG Threemendous IV starts off very underwhelming but redeems itself late with a series of three matches at four stars or better. Nothing gets to Match of the Month level, but those final three matches are very satisfying and give you the scope of the current PWG product. This isn’t necessarily a must-see show, and considering the recent string of really good events, this might seem like a bit of an underhwelming show all things considered, but if you’re a fan, you should seek out the last hour of this show, but you can skip the rest and continue catching up on whatever New Japan Pro Wrestling G1 Climax stuff you missed.
- The Buzz: Three-match show
- Match of the Night: ‘Speedball’ Mike Bailey vs. Chris Hero
- Also Check Out: Ricochet v. Akira Tozawa, Mount Rushmore 2.0 beatdown, The Young Bucks v. Angelico & Jack Evans
Next Up: BOLA, bros!