Game Changer Wrestling
The Wrld on GCW
January 23, 2022
Hammerstein Ballroom
New York City, New York

Watch: FITE

Guys, Gals, Non-Binary pals, we have arrived!  GCW has arrived at Hammerstein for The Wrld on GCW. There are some who don’t like that, although it doesn’t change the reality that it is happening.

There’s a lot of naysaying one can do about GCW. A lot of critiques can justifiably be thrown their way. An outlaw mud show (said in jest here folks) that had plenty of mud slung their way and threw some of its own right back. Not always a digestible promotion for everyone, and definitely not a promotion everyone is going to gravitate toward. Sometimes they pound their own chest too loudly, too proudly. Sometimes they really grate on people’s nerves. They have their shortcomings and their pitfalls and they definitely aren’t a taste everyone can wash down the gullet.

All that said above, usually when their mouths write checks, they end up cashing them. They have built a loyal, dedicated, hardcore fanbase. The kind of fanbase you start seeing at the same shows no matter where they pop up. GCW keeps testing out new venues, new spots, new ventures. East coast, west coast, midwest, south, north, you’ll find them popping up everywhere putting on shows and “Bringing da mother fuckin’ ruckus.”

Through the barbed wire, light tubes, thumbtacks, blood, and sweat they have carved a path through the wrestling scene and for all intents and purposes despite the odds, despite the critics, despite everything, have become one hell of a success story. There will be those who decry this is not necessarily a good thing. They will decry their style, their presentation, what they stand for and what they accomplish. Maybe some of these critics have fair and reasonable points, but on others, they may just have to take the L or at least begrudgingly admit it’s all for naught.

Despite it all, GCW has found themselves at the legendary Hammerstein Ballroom for The Wrld on GCW. A night that could perhaps be the most significant and biggest show. A night that could be historic for both GCW and pro wrestling. There’s a lot of could there, GCW should deliver, but not mail it in on this night. They are holding a lot of cards and now must play them masterfully or otherwise potentially lose quite a bit of what they have gambled. Are they up for the task? If you ask the company and all who are loyal to it, they will say yes… and I can’t fault that confidence.

The performers are ready and have been anticipating this for months. A various mix of misfits, miscreants, and mutants. All of this is said lovingly as they are a dedicated and hardworking bunch. A hodgepodge of various styles, outlooks, popularities, and stature. They will be out there on this special night, in Hammerstein performing at one GCW’s biggest shows doing all they can to carve into wrestling history, in the same way, some of them carve into flesh, their marks. Everyone wants to leave a mark, sometimes people want that mark left upon them. There’s a connection there in that regard. When I’m watching The Wrld on GCW I want these performers to leave their mark on me. Something I can show other wrestling fans and say GCW did that, and say it with a smile on my face cause it hurts so good. Or I could show it off with a frown on my face and say “Shit, they were all over the place and didn’t know what they were doing.” I’m personally rooting for the former. I want them to succeed. I’m an admitted GCW fan after all. Failure is not something I actively cheer for when it comes to them. This is their night, and I hope for all intents and purposes they grab it by the throat and own it.

The task will be difficult but GCW loves when things are difficult and against them. They’ve already won a major part of the battle, they have made it to Hammerstein. Now it is time for them to make it theirs.

GCW always is under a microscope, and on this night the microscope will be larger, more in focus, looking for every imperfection and mistake. They are on FITE, they are on traditional PPV, they are on the minds of a lot of people in wrestling, and not all those minds want them to succeed. There are those rooting for them to fail. That is nothing new, nothing different. Nothing GCW doesn’t already know. GCW has a jeer squad of people always hoping for the promotion’s demise, and their anguish, whenever that does not come to fruition, is always heard loud and clear. I am not one of those people. I acknowledge the problems with GCW but find myself a fan nonetheless. I’m not a rabid fan, I’m not die-hard. I don’t feel the need to rush to their defense whenever someone in the audience does something stupid, or a questionable decision gets made, or a problematic wrestler gets booked. Despite all those things, I’m a fan. I had fun at their shows last year, I have ordered my share of iPPV, and they have entertained me in a lot of ways. I root for their success. I hope they succeed. That’s not up to me though. That’s up to them, and their track record so far is pretty good when it comes to the win column.

The card is a mix, both in possible quality and both in what is being presented. You get a little sample of everything that makes up GCW in a lot of ways. If one sample doesn’t do it for you, hopefully, the next one will. With so many eyes potentially on the show tonight, that’s smart. Got to get a good mix in there so hopefully, even the biggest critic can say “I enjoyed that at least.” Looking at the card I can’t pretend it’s the card I Imagined when they first announced the show but then being GCW, not sure what I could’ve possibly imagined.

Jon Moxley vs. Homicide should be fun. Moxley made his first wrestling match looking sober, looking healthy, looking motivated, and awesome. Homicide, always popular, always fun, has already left his spot in independent wrestling. That is the main event. Maybe not the main event I envisioned, but one I can sink my teeth into. One that I feel is going to have a loud reaction and a lot of investment. This could be fun shit, and I think despite not being what I expected, it no doubt could be a fun main event. Both men will be gamed, charged, pumped. The crowd will be up there with them. This has success written all over it. I have high confidence the main event will deliver.


Ruby Soho vs. Allie Katch will not be the best match on the show, but there’s no reason it can’t be a certain level of fun. You can critique the wrestling of Allie Katch all you desire, but it doesn’t change the fact she is absolutely beloved. GCW just absolutely adores her, and I got to be honest, I kind of do as well. (Hey Allie if you read this, sorry about that five dollars I gave Dark Shiek to staple on you!) Ruby Soho is also loved and respected, so having these two in the ring together should make for a focused and lively crowd. Allie Katch versus Ruby Soho is not the match I’m most looking forward to by any stretch, but I do have confidence I won’t be upset at watching it. I sincerely hope they put on a good affair.

Jeff Jarrett vs. Effy is perhaps one of the most hyped matches on the show… I type that without any jest. Talk about matches I wouldn’t have predicted or guessed. Jeff Jarrett keeps on winning. Never bet against that man, you will lose. I have no idea how the quality of this will go, I know there will be smokes and mirrors and El KABONGS! A plenty. They will have to pull out a lot of tricks to make this match entertaining, and both Jarrett and Effy know plenty of tricks. There is no way I could have ever predicted Jarrett versus Effy might be one of the biggest matches of GCW’s biggest show, but I’ve given up on predicting wrestling a long time ago.

The Briscoes have an open challenge. Despite my personal opinion of the Briscoes, as performers they excel, they are top-notch talent. Depending on who they get paired with this could be a heated and awesome exchange. The Briscoes are always amped, always motivated, always on fire. I have no idea who they are facing, but I got a feeling it would be better delivered on this show. Never hint at a surprise and then give us a whimper instead of a bang. Wrestling never learns that lesson.

Matt Cardona vs. Joey Janela will be quite the affair. Janela, a GCW mainstay, Cardona, someone who gets under the GCW faithful’s skin just by having the mere audacity to exist. A beloved favorite versus a heat magnet. Cardona being such a pivotal part of GCW has been fascinating and entertaining. I love booing him, I get mad when he wins, and I laugh in his face when he’s a bloody mess and gets what he deserves. This match will work out. This match will succeed based on the love and hate factors alone. Oh, I have to end this paragraph with this: Fuck Matt Cardona. Cathartic.

The Original ROH title of all things will be defended on this show with Jonathan Gresham vs. Christian Blake. This should be an excellent affair. Perhaps the best match of the show from a wrestling standpoint. Definitely going to be a personal highlight for me. I’ve always enjoyed Blake and thought he was just getting started on hitting that next level before he temporarily found himself in the wasteland that is current NXT. Gresham is excellent in the ring, excellent on the mat. This will rule.

There are more matches, more moments, more performers to look forward to. There will even be a pre-show Battle Royal as if this show needs to throw more at us (and I have a feeling a lot will be thrown.) There will be highs and lows, hits and misses. This show will not be perfect, at times it might even be a mess. All of that will be and is part of the GCW experience. It’s a cluster, a clutter, a calamity, it’s chaos, and it’s certainly a climate not everyone likes the temperature of. I have no doubt in my mind it will be memorable.

GCW will do everything it can to leave its mark on wrestling that night, on us. GCW has earned this spot, earned this moment. You can shear and gnash your teeth at that all you want. They have paved their own way with their own handiwork and made it at last to these hallowed grounds. Everyone who takes part in this show knows they have an opportunity to create something special.

From the wrestlers to the referees, to the photographers, to the commentators, to those operating the cameras, to those handling business backstage, and finally to those who will be live in attendance. Every single one of them will be a piece in completing this puzzle, which has been a long time in being put together and is so close to being finished.

All eyes are on GCW, and the last thing they want to do is make any of those eyes turn away (Although some inevitably will).

GCW, this is your moment in the biggest spotlight. You fought for it, you scratched and clawed for it, you bleed buckets for it. Make it fucking count. After all, I’ll need an opportunity to make it to Hammerstein II.