Game Changer Wrestling
Bring ‘Em Out
September 6, 2020
Celebration Plaza Amphitheater
Indianapolis, IN

Watch: FITE

GCW is back after a successful Tournament of Survival weekend and have returned to Indianapolis for the third time this summer. Nick Gage is still on the shelf with an injury, while Rickey Shane Page and the rest of 44OH! are recovering after having three men reach the TOS semi-finals, but not winning the tournament. This is also the last show before the recently-rescheduled Collective, which will also emanate from Indianapolis and features the most famous GCW show of the year, Joey Janela’s Spring Break.

Jordan Oliver def. Ben Carter

First of all, Kevin Gill and Dave Prazak were on the call. I can’t help but be disappointed that Nick Gage, the greatest commentator of all time, appears to have taken the show off. This match was between two of the most prominent “new wave” of independent talent. Despite being early in his career, Carter feels pretty seasoned already. His offense looks good, he moves around quickly and he just feels a cut above most of his generation of talent. Right as I say that, he hit an impressive sequence: after a kip-up, he wad sent into the counter, launched himself over a charging Oliver into multiple hand-springs, flipped off the top rope, then immediately hit two dives to the outside to a fleeing Oliver, including a plancha where he landed on his feet. Oliver’s offense showed some impressive flashes, but his slower style does take the crowd out of the match a bit when he is in control. He hit a superplex from the top rope and lifted Carter up for a second immediately upon impact, but is countered into a rolling cradle for a near-fall. Both men got up and hit synchronized clotheslines and big boots. Carter attacks with such energy, it just feels like a different switch is turned on each time he takes command. He hit a huge springboard hurricanrana to the outside floor (or, more accurately, grass). After more action in the ring, Carter hit a one-man Spanish Fly off of the ropes and then immediately hit a double stomp. To finish the sequence, he attempted a frog splash but missed. Oliver took advantage, hit a Clout Cutter from ropes, but Carter kicked out. He then immediately hit a sort of pump handle driver for the win. ***¼

Carter feels like a can’t miss prospect right now. Everything he does just feels on a different level than his peers. This match kicked into a different gear when he was in control. Oliver did a decent job keeping up with him and did not let the sloppiness that sometimes plagues him overshadow this match, but sometimes the crowd seemed a bit unenthused by his control segments.

Chris Dickenson def. Alex Colon

Colon is coming off of his second Tournament of Survival win, where he had to survive two of GCW’s toughest competitors: Shlak and Shane Page. Here, he faced one of the very top on the whole indie scene in Dickenson. Immediately, Colon was in a different element here, going tit-for-tat with Dickenson with mat wrestling exchanges instead of light tube shots. After Dickenson got the best of one such exchange, Colon escaped to the outside and invited Dickenson out, grabbed some chairs and turned this into a brawl that is more in his wheelhouse. Dickenson tried to powerbomb Colon onto a chair, but Colon backdroped him right onto the top of it. Very brutal. Dickenson delivered his own slam onto a chair of his own, then returned to the ring and began to wear down Colon. Colon was able to regain his footing, though, and was able to again go toe-to-toe with Dickenson. While he is best-known as a deathmatch guy, Colon did a good job showing that he can have a solid match without relying on plunder and gore. He feels right on the cusp of being a top guy in GCW, which requires versatility. After kicking out of a Code Red, Dickenson fired some kicks at a kneeling Colon. However, Colon responded by repeatedly punching Dickenson in the knee and eventually grounded him to set up a superkick to the face. This was very cool. Colon locked in a leg lock, then threw more kicks at the leg. Dickenson shook them off, hit a big lariat and locked on his own figure four. Dickenson kept working the leg, hit an elbow drop on it, and locked in a STF for the win. ***½

A very solid match that shows that Colon work beyond just deathmatches and keep up with the hardest hitting wrestling on the GCW roster.

Tony Deppen def. Calvin Tankman

Tankman has been one of the major GCW discoveries of 2020. He’s big but athletic and agile. Deppen is the “Gatekeeper” of GCW – if you want a new guy to have a good match, put them in with Deppen. I will say, I’m not a fan of the nickname and gimmick – it feels like it limits Deppen a bit. Early on, Deppen attempted to ground Tankman with some leg kicks, but they weren’t very effective. Tankman soon gained the upper hand and started picking apart Deppen. However, Deppen took advantage of a quick Tankman misstep and again concentrated on the leg. He set up Tankman in a 619 position, but instead of a kick, he launched a crossbody to the back of his dangling opponent. Tankman tried to show off his agility with a crazy shooting star press, but Deppen avoided it. Eventually, Deppen tried to lift Tankman up for a fireman’s carry, but collapsed under Tankman’s weight. After traveling to the apron to attempt a suplex to the outside, Deppen jumped back inside, rolls up Tankman, and used the ropes for leverage to get the surprise win. ***¼

This was another decent back and forth match. An issue with some of these COVID-era shows is crowd interaction, and the lack of major heat here prevented this match from reaching a different level.

Shane Mercer & KTB def. Tre Lamar & Lee Moriarty

Mercer and KTB began tagging at the last GCW show and immediately became the most impressive tag team in GCW. While Mercer has been on the GCW roster for a while, he always seemed more to just a big guy who had some cool moves that could get over in scrambles, but didn’t really have a role beyond that. His inclusion in the Tournament of Survival and subsequent teaming with KTB solidified him as a true part of the fabric of GCW. Lamar and Moriarty have mainly been in singles matches since both debuted this summer. Immediately, Lamar tried to attack Mercer with his superior speed, with Mercer using his strength to try to stop him. KTB and Moriarty tagged in, and we got more fast-paced exchanges with both men feeling the other out. Mercer and KTB began lifting their opponents onto their shoulders, then threw them onto the shoulder of their partner, who then drove the target to the mat. Mercer threw Moriarty belly-to-belly style into the waiting arms of KTB, who caught him into a power bomb. Lamar and Moriarty isolated KTB and started using their speed to swarm and attack, then did the same to Mercer. Lamar tried to hurricanrana KTB off the top rope, but KTB is caught and saved by Mercer. Mercer then picked Lamar up for a fireman’s carry, threw him to KTB for a powerbomb, then KTB picked Lamar up for another power bomb but threws him to an awaiting Mercer for a German suplex. Mercer got the pin. ***½

This was a cool clash of styles, with each team isolating the other and concentrating on what works for them to pick apart their opponent. There was some slight sloppiness, but nothing that hurt the match too much. This is a matchup that I’d love to see again on a bigger show with a little more time.

Allie Kat def. Julian

Allie Kat grabbed the mic, but the commentary talked over her so I couldn’t hear anything she said. It appears that she called out anyone from the back for the Allie Kat open MEOW-llange. She’s answered by Julian, or Ethan Page, or however, he’s referred to now. The graphic says Julian, but both commentary and Page himself referred to him as Ethan Page. Confusing. He told Allie Kat to get out of the ring so that he can have a real open challenge. After Kat took some shots at Impact Wrestling, Page said he’ll put his career on the line to prove that he can beat Allie Kat. Allie Kat surprisingly took most of the match, then surprised Page with a flash rollup after a few minutes. **

This was quick, but just really wasn’t much of anything.

Page’s career is over. He got on the mic, says he was going to sign the biggest contract of his life on January 1st and that his career can’t be over. Joey Janela came out and said he’ll give Page his career back if Page returns to his dreaded role of agenting the annual Clusterfuck at Joey Janela’s Spring Break next month. Page agreed, and the Clusterfuck is back.

AJ Gray def. Mance Warner

This match quickly turned into a chop battle. Warner attempted a dreaded eye poke, but Gray avoided it and began decimating Warner’s leg. Warner was able to change the momentum and hit a spinebuster, but his leg is still giving him some trouble. He attempted the Bionic Elbow, but Gray brutally kicked the bad leg out from under him. They exchanged great-looking punches until Warner was finally able to hit the eye poke to gain the momentum. Gray was able to put the injured leg in a single-leg crab, then transitioned to a choke. Warner passed out, giving Gray the win. ***¼

It was a nice change of pace to have the match revolve around legwork that was actually returned to and focused on. Other matches on the show featured legwork that never factored into the rest of the match.

Atticus Cougar def. Jimmy Lloyd, Cole Radrick, Ace Austin, Dyln Mckay, Nate Webb

Hometown hero Webb’s famous Teenage Dirtbag entrance was interrupted by 44OH!’s Atticus Cougar, who attacked Webb while he was walking to the ring. Cougar was met by every other competitor beating him down as soon as he entered the ring, with Webb threw a chair right at his face. Jimmy Lloyd almost planted Radrick right onto the leg of a chair, which would have been very bad if it happened. Luckily, the chair was then removed from the ring. Cougar entered with his own chair, but again was attacked before he could do anything effective. I’ve never seen Dyln Mckay before (I’m just as confused as to where the “A” went as you are), but I was impressed with him. He had some unique flying moves that had a slightly unorthodox twist, and he hit a very crisp Shooting Star Press. The action continued, highlighted by a spear from Radrick to Cougar through a door on the outside. Webb hit a Laddersault flush on McKay. It looked brutal and great. However, Cougar snuck in and stole the pin from Webb. ***½

GCW scrambles are usually pretty similar, but I thought this was on the good side. It had a little story, with Cougar’s sliminess finally paying off at the end. Everyone looked good, the new guys shined, and there were some cool spots. Can’t ask for more from a match like this.

Joey Janela def. Effy

Janela’s duel career right now is interesting – he hasn’t quite translated in AEW and was recently squashed by Chris Jericho, but is still a big star and fits in perfectly in GCW. Effy really works in the current indy landscape because he has a distinct personality that plays into his matches, but also has deceptive size and knows when to rely on comedy and when to rely on his wrestling. Janela went under the ring and found a little bit of the bubbly, but tossed that aside for a door, chairs and a trashcan lid. Effy cut off Janela and used his size to swarm Janela. Janela folded Effy in half with a brutal German suplex, then followed up with another one. Effy was able to finally hit a German of his own, then hit a TKO right into a Dragon Sleeper. The action made its way to the apron, where Janela palmed Effy’s forehead, jumped off the apron and slammed Effy’s head into the mat. He then grabbed a door from under the ring, placed it on a prone Effy, and hit a double stomp. He threw Effy into the ring, then hit a flying elbow drop for a two-count. For his resilience, Effy was immediately sent through a door in the corner. Janela sat Effy on the top turnbuckle, but Effy was able to shift momentum and hit a huge Blockbuster off the ropes through a table set up on the ground outside. It was a crazy looking bump. Janela hit a package piledriver, but Effy kicked out. Then he planted Effy with a top people double stomp right through his chest, but another kickout. Finally, he hit a superkick to a prone Effy and scored the victory. ***¾

Janela’s matches often get the major focus on GCW shows. Sometimes they can go a bit long and are overly ambitious, but this one checked all of the boxes. Effy came across as Janela’s equal and was able to keep up with Janela the whole time. This was the best Effy performance I’ve seen.

After the match, Janela told Effy that he’ll be at Effy’s Big Gay Bash at the Collective, and says that he knows someone else from AEW who also wants to be there.

Rickey Shane Page def. Matthew Justice

This is a non-title match, continuing the trend of RSP only defending the title when he is absolutely forced to. After retreating to start, RSP was quickly attacked by Justice, who overwhelmed RSP and quickly gets the upper hand. However, 44OH! was in full force around the ring, and a distraction by Gregory Iron allows RSP to gain control. Then… the feed goes out. It is now multiple days after the show, and the video has not been fixed. RSP won, I’m sure in some sort of dastardly fashion.

Blake Christian vs. ACH

ACH has been great since he’s returned to the indies and has solidified his “seasoned vet” role. Christian has been built as GCW’s next big star but hasn’t quite grown into the role yet. It’s very beneficial that he’s able to wrestle his first GCW main event against ACH, a guy who was in Christian’s shoes not too long ago with a similar style but now knows how to really get the most out of it. Christian’s inexperience showed early as he goes for a dive, but ACH moves. Christian flipped back into the ring, but as he did, ACH rushed in and took him out, taking advantage of Christian’s momentary lack of focus. After Christian was able to get some of his own offense in, ACH takes the action outside towards the river bordering the park. Unfortunately, despite teasing going near the waterfall that’s seen in the distance, they returned to the ring. ACH really has star presence in GCW: he comes off as a different level. He knows how to work the crowd and get the most out of everything, but he’s still young and athletic enough to go step-for-step with someone younger like Christian. Highlights include an awesome sunset flip powerbomb by ACH and a one-Spanish Fly/450 combo from Christian. After slipping on the ropes and nearly falling, Christian hit Elia off the top for the win. ***¾

This was a good vet vs. rookie high flying match. The structure didn’t switch the formula up too much, but ACH was able to lead Christian to a good match. Christian has been thrown into the “next big thing” position early in his career, and has had mixed results, but ACH was able to highlight Christian’s strengths.

Final Thoughts

GCW Bring Em Out was a solid show despite nothing being a must-see. There wasn’t too much that was bad, either, besides the open challenge segment that wasn’t too long, but still overstayed its welcome. The biggest flaw of the show was it’s length – 10 matches in three and a half hours with no intermission was a bit draining by the end.

Best match: Joey Janela vs. Effy