AAW – Jim Lyman Memorial tournament – Thursday & Friday – Logan Square Auditorium, Chicago.
I love tournaments me. So simple and to the point. No overcomplicated stories, just a nice and easy single elimination, best man wins competition. Pretty much every promotion has their own version. Their own time of the year to put on two awesome days of wrestling that everyone can follow. This week it’s AAW’s turn to bang one out, with their 4th annual Jim Lynam Memorial taking place on Thursday and Friday. Past winners of Chicago’s most Illustrious tourney are Chris Hero, Michael Elgin and last year’s winner, Sami Callihan. This year 16 men will be battling it over the two days, hoping to add their names to that list.
The stand-out first round matches have to be the high-flying contest of Trey Miguel vs Myron Reed, the big boys match between Ace Romero and Willie Mack, the father/son battle with MJF taking on Colt Cabana, and a bit of Hoss fight with Impact stars Jake Something and Josh Alexander throwing each other around the ring with ease. Making up the rest of the field will be Fatu, Jake Atlas, Jimmy Jacobs, Laredo Kid, Ace Austin, Eddie Kingston, Curt Stallion and a guy I’ve spoken of many times before, and someone I’m very happy to see get this exposure, Joey Lynch. That Something vs Alexander match could really be, ummm, something. My pick for the winner of the whole bloody thing is between Myron Reed, Jake Something or Fatu. Visit their website and find out how you can watch these awesome two shows.
Black Label Pro & Game Changer Wrestling – 2 Cups Stuffed – Friday – Grand Sports Arena, Illinois.
Since All In 2 is in Chicago this weekend the Indie action in Illinois is aplenty, as promotions from all over the shop look to take advantage of the travelling crowd. Two promotions in particular have taken advantage of that, as Black Label Pro and Game Changer are coming together to hold a joint show, 2 Cups Stuffed at the Grand Sports Arena on Friday night. The show will be offering some absolute bangers, with a special Lucha 6-man in particular looking a bit tasty. Laredo Kid is many peoples Lucha of the year so far and he will indeed be in this match along with Black Taurus, Gringo Loco, Ophidian, Arez and Rey Horus. I reckon we may see a tope suicida or two in that one. If the flippy stuff isn’t your thing, then Homicide will be taking on Ethan Page, and Nick Gage will be defending the GCW Championship against Effy. There is also the rather intriguing match between newly signed AEW guy Orange Cassidy and the greatest vampire of all time, Gangrel. Other talent appearing includes Alex Zayne, Kobe Durst, Australian Suicide, Matthew Justice, Blake Christian and Jimmy Lloyd. Surely that six man alone is worth a watch.
Warrior Wrestling – Six – Sunday – Marian Catholic High School, Chicago Heights.
Sticking in Chicago for another massive show this week, Warrior Wrestling host their 6th show on Sunday in Chicago Heights. As always, the line-up is pretty impressive, with the promotion always somehow managing to bring together talent from all over the place in what is the true definition of Super Indie. The main event looks like it’ll be a battle of the Impact big boys, with Michael Elgin facing Brian Cage for Cages Warrior Wrestling Championship. I haven’t watched Impact in years but I believe they are currently feuding for the belt there. Other impressive matches include Alex Shelley taking on Austin Aries, Tom Lawler vs Killer Kross, and my personal favorite Lance Archer vs Alex Zayne. Archer was an absolute revelation in the G1 and the thought of him throwing Zayne around while his opponent pulls off ridiculous dives brings a smile to my face. They aren’t the only big names on the show though, as Tessa Blanchard, Brian Pillman Jr, Frank Mir and the Lucha Bros will all be appearing. I mention this everytime I cover them, but I still don’t know how they do it. Check out their website to find out more.
Unsanctioned Pro – UPS6: All Killer, No Filler – Saturday – Columbus, Ohio.
The Chicago streak has to finally end, and I’ve gone from Illinois to Ohio (are they close? Editor’s Note: Relatively so, yes. -Rich) for Unsanctioned Pro. I’m not sure if I’ve covered these guys in the past but their upcoming show, All Killer, No Filler, stood out mainly because they are hosting a tag team invitational on Saturday, with some of the best unknown teams on the scene. My main goal with doing these weekly previews is to shine a light on some of the stuff happening outside of the super Indies and to take a look at some of the wrestlers who maybe aren’t as well knows as they should be. Tag team wrestling is certainly a part of the scene that needs a lot of attention right now, especially since AEW came along and took a lot of the bigger teams in America. So fairplay to Unsanctioned here for giving a chance to the next batch of tag teams currently plying their trade in the States. My favourite of the bunch is easily the Violence is Forever duo of Kevin Ku and Dominic Garrini. The team formerly known as SadKampf are having a cracking year and would probably be in on my shortlist for team of the year. Here they will be joined by the always enjoyable Space Pirates, Ugly Ducklings, The Hooligans, 40 Acres, Majin Beef and the intriguing team of Myron Reed and Matt Cross. I can’t find any records of these two teaming together before, but I am all aboard this pairing. If you’re not a tag team guy them Mance Warner will also be around as he faces Tripp Cassidy. Visit their website and give them a chance.
Chaotic Wrestling – Summer Chaos – Saturday – Haverhill, Massachusetts.
Talking about tag teams, one of my favourites and probably the breakout team of the year has got to be the big old boys of Bear Country. Thanks to Beyond’ ‘Uncharted Territory’ series, the team of Bear Bronson and Bear Beefcake really broke out and became fan favourites. The two big bastards are always a pleasure to watch, and on Saturday they will be appearing for another Massachusetts promotion, Chaotic wrestling, for their Summer Chaos event. There they will be getting a shot at the tag titles, challenging the Killa Nova pairing of Royce Bishop & Triplelicious). Another popular guy over in Beyond is Anthony Greene, the metrosexual is the current Chaotic Heavyweight champion and will be defending the title against Christian Casanova. Casanova also got himself during Uncharted Territory and this should be a pretty good match. To find out how you can watch Bear Country become the new champions, check out their website.
Rev Pro – Summer Sizzler – Friday – York Hall, Bethnal Green.
I had a right old moan at Rev Pro a couple of weeks ago, so I decided to go a bit easy on them this week. After their rather lacklustre anniversary show, they will be hosting their big Summer Sizzler show at York Hall this Friday in what I’m expecting to be sold out crowd. The York Hall events are always big shows for the promotion and unsurprisingly they are bringing in some New Japan talent, with Okada & Tanahashi teaming up to take on Zack Sabre Jr & Minoru Suzuki. All four guys are incredibly over in the UK, so I’m expecting that to be a great match.
The Rev Pro matches are pretty big too, with David Starr facing Will Ospreay in a rather over convoluted Career vs Control stipulation, with Starr apparently getting control of the promotion if he wins. Just let them wrestle for fucks sake. You’ve got two of the best wrestlers in the world, nobody cares about a stupid stipulation. The show will also see the final of the Royal Quest tag team tournament between Aussie Open and Sha Samuels & Josh Bodom, with the winner facing GOD at Royal Quest. That’s not all though, as El Phantasmo will be facing the promotions break-out star this year, Michael Oku. They will also be following up with a Live from the Cockpit show the next day. Go check out their On-demand. It’ll probably take them a few months to get the show on there, but you never know.
Wrestling League – The Wrestling League Cup – Saturday – The Kingsway Hall, Harwich.
Now for my weekly dose of ‘promotions you’ve prob never heard of’, where I take a little look at some of the UK companies who are quietly plugging away and keeping Britwres alive by giving some of the up and coming talent a place to work on a regular basis. This week that begins in Harwich for The Wrestling League Cup on Saturday. The Wrestling League promotion will be holding a one night, 8-man tournament. As of yet I can find no information on who any of the participants are. Which is a bit silly since the show is just over a week away. Come on lads break us off a piece. In fact, I’m not even sure why I’m including this show, but what the hell I’ve written it now. I have, after a lot of digging around, managed to find one match for the show. That being the tag team title match where The Lads will defend their titles against The Anti Fun Police. Go visit their website and see if you can get any information on who’s in the bloody tournament..
Wrestling Resurgence – Arthouse Wrestling Vol.3 – Saturday – Attenborough Arts Centre, Leicester.
The next show seems to actually have their shit in order, as Wrestling Resurgence hold their Arthouse Wrestling Vol.3 event in Leicester on Saturday. Chris Brookes will be there, and the most popular guy in BritWres will be facing probably the funniest guy on our scene, Gene Munny for the Resurgence Championship. Brookes is a bit of a connoisseur himself when it comes to the gags, so if comedy wrestling is your thing then I’d expect this to be a laugh a minute. If you fancy something a bit more serious then Charli Evans and Kanji will be going at it in a 30-minute Iron woman match. That should be pretty tasty, might try and check that one out if it becomes available. Other up and coming UK names such as Connor Mills, Spike Trivet, Candy Floss and Man Like Dereiss will also be at the Attenborough Arts Centre. Find out more here.
Battle Championship Wrestling – BCW 32 & 33 – Friday & Saturday – Victoria & Sydney.
If you happen to in either Victoria or Sydney and you like your hardcore stuff then you could be in luck, as the deathmatch legend Mashashi Takeda will be appearing over two nights for Battle Championship Wrestling this weekend. The Japanese maniac will be getting himself a BCW Heavyweight title shot against Maddog in a violent rules match. I don’t know too much about Maddog, but he could be in for tough night in Victoria. Ken Shamrock and Dan Severn are both also scheduled to appear, with the MMA legend even having a match on the Sydney show. Fuck, I didn’t think we’d ever see that match again. There will also be a 15-man battle rumble match, with Mick Moretti, Gabriel Wolfe and Cody Swift all having a bash. Fucking hell these shows are weird. Visit their website to find out more.
Pro Wrestling Australia – Break Their Back & Make Them Rumble – Friday – Max Watts, Sydney.
Pro Wrestling Australia, who you can now rate on the old GRAPPL app, will be presenting Break Their Back & Make Them Rumble (bloody hell that’s a long name) at the Max Watts venue in Sydney on Friday. There shall of course be a rumble match, with 30 guys fighting it out for a shot at Caveman Ugg’s heavyweight title at their Colosseum show in October. I couldn’t find out too much about who’s in the flipping rumble, but I’m sure all their regulars will be having a go.
In the tag division Mick Moretti and Jack Bonza, better known as the Four Nations, will be defending their PWA tag team titles against The Velo-Cities team of Jude London & Paris De Silva. These two teams have wrestled each other all over the country and since Mick Moretti is in the match, I’m sure it’ll be bloody awesome. Unsocial Jordan and Concrete Davidson will also be facing off, with Jordan’s BSCG and Davidson’s SMS stablemates all banned from ringside, Little bit of storytelling there, nice stuff. Oh fuck, before I forget, TJ Perkins will be having a match, I believe facing Matty Wahlberg. Go see if they’ve announced some names for the Rumble by visiting their website.
Explosive Pro Wrestling – Hell of High Water – Saturday – Claremont, Western Australia.
Fairplay, TJ Perkins is popular is Australia. As well as his above-mentioned match in Sydney, he’ll also be making an appearance at Explosive Pro Wrestling’s Hell or High-Water show in Claremont. The winner of the Cruiserweight Classic will be facing another competitor from that tournament, Damian Slater. Unfortunately, Slater didn’t have as good a run in Full Sail as Perkins (I believe he lost to Tajiri in the first round), but Slater is a regular for the promotion and a damn good wrestler to boot. So, this one should be quite good. Elsewhere, the current EPW champion, Michael Morleone, will be defending his title against Davis Storm in the main event. Oh, and there will also be two quarter final matches for the EPW Invitational tournament, with Julian Ward facing Craven, and Karl Steria taking on David Nero. You can find out much more by giving their website a little visit.
Melbourne City Wrestling – New Horizons – Saturday – The Thornbury Theatre, Victoria.
Our last trip down under this week is to my favorite promotion in the country, Melbourne City Wrestling. Their New Horizons show kicks off on Saturday with an absolute fucking beauty of a title match on the card between their current champion, Slex, and a man I praised last week, Adam Brooks. This will be awesome and anybody who says otherwise is an idiot. Another of my favorites in Australia right now is Indi Hartwell. After catching her for the first time over Mani weekend, I instantly became a bit fan of the Melbourne native. She is still quite early into her career, but she’s got a great presence about her that could certainly help her become a big name on the Indie scene. At New Horizons she will be facing another woman I saw over Mania weekend, the powerhouse Steph de Lander. There will even be a nice little street fight on the show between Ritchie Taylor and DCT. Should be fun. Visit their website, you’ll have a whale of a time.
Rest of the World
Lucha Libre Vanguardia – Vanguardia – Sunday – Ecatepec, Estadio de Mexico.
Lucha Libre Vanguardia, a promotion I’ve never heard of before this week, shall be holding a pretty stacked show this Sunday at the Estadio de Mexico. Even as a non Lucha fan I’m familiar with a good portion of this line-up. The obvious match being Bandido vs Flamita. In many way Bandido became the star that some thought Flamita would become. I’m much more of a Bandido fan myself but I suppose Flamita has a certain charm about him. Aeroboy and Drastik Boy will also be teaming up to take on Negro Casas & Audaz on the show.
Battlewar – Battlewar 67 – Sunday – Montreal, Quebec.
Battlewar 67 will be kicking off on Sunday in Montreal for their 8th show of the year. If you’re unlike Vinny Mac and you love your blood and guts, then Channing Decker and The Green Phantom will be breaking out the tables for a hardcore match. Decker’s nickname is ‘Hardcore’, so I imagine he’ll be loving this stuff. The other match on the card so far is Aiden Prince vs Benjamin Tull. I’ve seen Prince a few times and that lad had got some skills. Should be a good match. More info should be available on their Twitter page.
Dutch Pro Wrestling – Summer Showdown – Saturday – Mercatorweg.
Time for another visit to Holland for Dutch Pro Wrestling’s Summer Showdown this Saturday. The Marty Jannety of European wrestling (from a wrestling standpoint, I have no idea if Dante is a crazy drug addict) Michael Dante, will be battling it out for the DPW heavyweight championship against John Evers. Dante has held the title since December and the big bastard will be hoping to make it to a year as the champ. Other matches include, Kenzo Richards vs Andrey Ivanov, and Daniel Sparks vs MBM. You can visit their website to find out more.