ECCW returned once again to the Sapperton Hall in New Westminster (Or “New West Minister” if you felt like butchering the name like many of the wrestlers did), headlined by a returning Pete Powers (last seen murdering several ECCW officials and thus getting suspended) vs Artemis Spencer, the hardest working Canadian Champ in history.
It was also a night featuring El Phantasmo offering up an open challenge for the ECCW Championship, and King Khash making funny noises in the ring. The night had everything, really.
So what happened? What went down? Read on to find out!
Alex Plexis vs Ravenous Randy
It’s a tale as old as time. Once former friends who probably shared workout routine tips and smoothie recipes, they are now and possibly forever rivals.
Alex Plexis, coming out to that glorious Stompa tune, was accompanied yet again by Kris Kassidy, a man with more outfit changes than Lady Gaga. Ravenous Randy was accompanied yet again, buy a kind of weird jacket.
The match was a good opener, with a clear fan favorite in Randy taking on one of the best heels in ECCW in Plexis. I honestly didn’t know who was going to win, I thought Plexis might still be reeling from his failed Pac Cup defense, but Kassidy proved yet again to be a stronger ally than a jacket.
With the ref distracted, Kassidy snuck in and wedged his briefcase into the corner. This allowed Plexis to slam Ravenous headfirst into the briefcase (which I assume was full of lead and half written screenplays), allowing Plexis to sneak out a victory.
In hindsight, I should have seen a Plexis victory coming. You can usually tell how good he will do based on how well he unzips his vest before a match, and he nailed it Saturday. Sometimes the zipper gets stuck and he fumbles around with it, and you just know his heads not in the game.
But at Seek and Destroy? Plexis Stompa’d all over Randy.
Full credit Ravenous Randy, though, for interacting with Big Sean while he was eating his dinner. Everyone else moved out of the way for a big move to the outside, all except Big Sean, who was in the middle of eating his dinner and didn’t move an inch. Randy then took a moment to see what he was eating and it made for a pretty good light hearted moment. One of Randy’s big strengths is interacting with the fans.
Nicole Matthews vs King Khash
Let me start this match off by saying I fully realize I am the worst guy to wrestle in front of. I usually make very little noise, and kind of stare intently at the matches. I don’t do this because I’m too cool to cheer, I do this because that’s just kind of how I watch things. I like to analyze what’s going on, and I tend to want to sit back and let people do their thing.
I realize that runs counter to what a wrestler wants (fan interactions are the fuel for their night) so I apologize to the many wrestlers who had to force high fives out of me on the night. Nicole made sure to publicly shame my lack of high fiving and got several out of me.
As for the match itself, King Khash, one of the Buddy Wayne disciples (I kind of assume Khash, Kingpin Flynn and Jack and Carl Cunningham all hang out at the Bellis Fair all day) brought his top notch ring gear, and what I have been told is a “cement ass” to the match.
It was one of those “I’ll counter your counter to my counter of your counter” matches, with King Khash making a variety of odd noises throughout. It was like a snake at times.
“Ssssssssssst!” *arm drag*
“Sssssssaaaat!” *hip toss*
“Sssssssiiiitttaa!” arm lock*
At one point he yelled at us in a different language and made us feel bad about ourselves, but luckily Nicole Matthews was able to overcome her lack of sweaters to lock Khash in the Lion Tamer (Sweater Game?) and get the submission victory.
It’s worth noting Nicole slipped while attempting a springboard off the ropes, but had the veteran wiles to grab at her knee to make it look like her knee gave out on her. I gave a subtle nod of my head to that, but did not cheer, as is my way.
The Cunninghams vs The Voros Twins
The Chams headed into this match after losing out on a shot at the tag titles, so you know they were angry.
Well, Carl was grumpy and Jack was super jacked up, but same difference.
They were taking on the Voros Twins, guys with more t-shirts than finishing moves.
I didn’t know how this match was going to go (a lot of the time it feels like tag matches get the short end of the stick on shows in regards to time allotment and story lines) but this ended up actually being one of the best matches on the night. It was by far the best Voros match I’ve seen, and the Chams both brought their strengths to the show in full force.
Also, CARL THE CATCH SHOWED UP.
Carl “The Catch” Cunningham is an enigma wrapped in a mystery. You see, he’s supposed to be this elite submission expert, the kind of guy you call upon when somebody doesn’t want to drop a title. Guy doesn’t want to tow the company line? You send in “The Catch” to **** him/her up in the ring and break some limbs, get real collar and elbow with them. It works very well with Jack being the brute strength guy and Carl being the cerebral submission guy.
Except I think I’ve seen one submission attempt from Carl in the last year, and even that one was a questionable neck crank. “The Catch” seemed like his named was more suited for a contestant on a dating show.
But on Saturday? Carl locked in not one, not two, but THREE submission attempts. I am pretty sure I broke my rule of being quiet, as I audibly clapped like an excited seal when I saw this, but man, this was the highlight of the night for me.
As for Jack, he continues to be one of the best guys at showing emotion in the ring. He brings a very large presence with him both sizewise and mentally. Screaming “Big Jack is here!” got the crowd super pumped up, and he had several stall suplexes that were pretty freaking awesome. He is very very good at getting the crowd loud.
As for the Voros Twins, they too forced high fives out of me, but they did a good job of keeping up with the Chams. They also did their Tom Cruise running moves, as is their way.
The match ended with a CunningSlam, which is a move where Jack essentially uses Carl like a baseball bat.
Mike Santiago vs Darby Allin
This was my first match I’ve seen from Darby Allin, who had a jacket that kind of looked like it came from Pirates of the Caribbean?
He took on the perennially sour Mike Santiago, who is floating through life aimlessly right now in the wake up Ethan HD’s Pac Cup win.
The match was all about Santiago working over the arm of Allin, and using his veteran tricks to keep the young man grounded. Allin, who likes to convey “crazy eyes” in the ring a lot, didn’t get to showcase a ton in the match, so I don’t have a read on him yet.
As for Santiago, he repeatedly worked over the arm of Allin and eventually got the win as a result of it. I loved the ending, to be honest. Instead of doing the ol’ “bad guy working a limb until good guy heroically overcomes it”, it was instead a case of a smarter guy beating a young upstart. There was no rally, there was no hulking up from Allin, it was just a methodical beat down from Santiago.
It’s simple storytelling and not used enough and it was great.
After the match, Santiago was bleeding from his mouth, and wiped it across his chest a la Brock Lesnar and Hulk Hogan’s blood.
El Phantasmo vs Xavier Galaxy
The franchise, my boy El Phantasmo, decided to grace “New West Minister” with his presence and issued an open challenge for his belt. He even got on the mic before the match and it was the good El P on the mic (the one that riffs and improvs it) instead of the bad El P on the mic (the one in promo videos that talks about stuffed animals in a wooden voice). He got the crowd pretty amped and as usual brought that “it” factor that makes him a must see wrestler. He also showed off the new ECCW belt, which looks so much better now:
Xavier Galaxy then accepted the challenge, and I have only seen a couple of matches of Xavier, but I really enjoy his character. He walks the fine line of “too silly” very well, and doesn’t try and hit you in the face with his character’s quirks. It’s like when Goldust starts stammering and doing those awful sketches with R-Truth? That’s too over the top and feels too cheesy. Xavier plays up to his characters vain ways, but never tries too hard, so it makes his character more believable. He also comes out to “Candy Shop”, which how can you not love that.
The match itself was my own personal hell of a comedy match, BUT, in context it was the perfect match for them on the night. They already had Powers vs Arty booked for the “hardcore wrestling” part of the show, so there was no need for El P to go out and break his body in a middle of the show match. Also, Xavier Galaxy can pull off comedy matches without it hurting his character, so I was fine with it.
The match itself seemed like a long one, but it was really good for Galaxy to go toe to toe with the Champ. Yes, they had dance offs, nipple twisting (El P looked right at me before he did it, that son of a bitch), matrix chops and other tomfoolery, but mixed in all of that were some close pinfalls from Galaxy, and a couple of high impact moves that helped give Xavier some credibility in the ring. Kind of like the John Cena US Open challenge where someone high on the card gets to elevate one of the newer guys by having a long match with them.
Also, Galaxy nailed a Bronco Buster, which I was pleasantly surprised to see.
The match ended when El P ran along the ropes (but cheated and used a beam on the low roof to keep his balance) and landed on Galaxy (I don’t remember the move, I don’t think it was a splash, but it was something that broke Galaxy in half I’m sure.)
Scotty Mac on Naturally Spoken
Smac was supposed to have a match against hater-turned-lover Don Hellion (Formerly known as Mini-Kane), but Scotty has an eye injury keeping him out of action.
So instead, Smac brought out Drop Kick Murphy and Lindsay Hart to celebrate their birthdays. This included bringing out streamers, party hats and sparklers. At one point they lit the sparklers and then dropped one on the mat, and it almost caught a bunch of streamers on fire. Everyone quickly looked at Mary in fear before stomping out said sparkler, and thus probably ended the last time you’ll ever see sparklers in an ECCW ring ever again.
It was kind of an odd segment to tell you the truth. It felt like a blend of breaking the fourth wall and watching the grade 12 kids hanging out at their own table during lunch. It didn’t feel like a tight segment, it definitely felt like something thrown together on the fly.
But eventually Don Hellion wandered out.
Don, as you’ll remember, was in the House of Hell, and was often nothing more than a prop for them. He’d come out, hit a move or two, then walk to the back holding his head while somebody yelled at him. He was very much lost in the crowd with them.
But ever since he’s come out as Don Hellion, a lover, not a fighter, he is suddenly far more memorable. He has a great look (well groomed moustache, great hair, and a sick tattoo) and in just two appearances I already remember more about him that I did in a year of seeing him in House of Hell. I am actually very interested to see where he goes with this character.
On Saturday night, with wrestling off the table, Don had one request: To spend the day with Chill Town, because Lindsay Hart is a beautiful lady, and if there is one thing Don enjoys, it’s the company of beautiful ladies. Even when they tried shooting him down, Don Hellion remained focused on spending some time with Lindsay.
Don finally suggested the hug it all out, which led to this:
— thewrestlingclassic (@wrasslinclassic) March 27, 2016
Lots of hugs, ending in a nut show right in Don’s little Hellions.
Chill Town then left the ring, with Scotty Mac looking angry, even getting a party hat stuck in his earing. I remain convinced he is on a downward spiral since he lost the title and we are just going to see more and more of him becoming unhinged as he comes to grips with the fact he’s not the champ any longer.
Hopefully Don Hellion gets some revenge down the line, or at the very least, a lunch date with Lindsay Hart.
Nick Pesky vs Outlaw Vegas Ricter
Nick Pesky was another wrestler who shamed me into giving high fives (at least six of them), for the record.
This match, as Carl Cunningham described it, “looked like Pesky getting whipped by his cowboy father”. Both men share similar hair trends and beards, so this descriptor is quite apt.
Outlaw, who used to ref in the ECCW, apparently had a falling out with Pesky during a match he was having with Flynn (I really need Ross Renaud on speed dial for shows I miss). It led to Vegas getting in Pesky’s face, costing him a match, and turned Vegas to a life of cowboy boots and belt buckles.
And kudos to Outlaw for his in ring gear, he really does look like a grizzled cowboy who hates young kids and all of their instagrams and tweeting. Part of me hopes he eventually feuds with the Voros Twins over their social media lifestyle.
But back to this match, Pesky is one of the better guys at being believably angry in the ring. For example, with Darby Allin, I’m still not sure how to take his crazy eyes, but with Pesky, the dude is just really good at conveying believable anger in the ring.
And I kind of love the storyline between these two, to be honest. You have a ref who has lost his shit, tired of being pushed around, and is taking things into his own hands. At one point he screamed “I’m the law around here!” because he still thinks he knows what’s best for everyone. I actually don’t quite know if he’s really the bad guy here.
On the other hand, you have Pesky, someone who has not only been screwed out of the tag titles, but now has this ref screwing him out of singles matches. I kind of understand both guys side of things.
The match ended up being a solid brawl type match, with both guys trying out out hoss the other guy. It was a more serious style match, which is up my alley, so I quite enjoyed it.
It ended when Outlaw thought he had Pesky beat, but Nick got his foot on the ropes. Outraged by this, Vegas took off his belt buckle and punched Pesky right in the face, giving Pesky the DQ win.
After the match, Pesky grabbed the mic and demanded a re-match in Poco, and then cussed in front of several children. Outlaw accepted and called Pesky “Boy”, lending further strength to Carl’s comments. Rumor has it loser of the match has to mow the lawn for a month.
Artemis Spencer vs Pete Powers
This match was for the Canadian Championship, and for Arty to try and regain some Canadian pride after he failed us all in the Pac Cup. Arty then tried to not high five me, claiming he thought I would be sitting elsewhere. I am pretty sure I am entering a deep feud with Arty now, that son of a bitch.
Pete Powers, who inexplicably got a title shot for being suspended, is one of my “Dream Stable” boys (El P, Powers, Chams and Plexis), so I was excited to see him get a shot at the title. I was also excited for what would sure to be an epic tantrum if he lost.
Powers came out with Kassidy (in a new outfit, as is his way) and began demanding everyone “kneel down to their God”. Spencer came out kind of smirking at this, fully in affable, lovable Arty mode, a guy you just want to give a hug and talk about your day with. Then the match started and Arty flipped into “Super angry, why didn’t you wash the dishes like I asked you to” Spencer, and started going toe to toe with Pete.
Since Arty can’t help but go 100%, he did a move off the ropes to the outside where I thought he might actually be broken in half. Nicole Matthews even looked momentarily worried after Arty landed on about eighty chairs. Again, if you want to get your moneys worth from any show, see if Arty is on the card, and you’ll know you’ll get it.
The match wasn’t as good as the Artemis vs Bishop match from the last New West show (I really really liked that match), but it was still a great way to end the night. I could watch Pete Powers in maniacal god mode all day long. Also, for a big guy, Powers is pretty agile in the ring.
Arty, once again going to his dark place, screamed “**** YOU!” right in Powers face near the end of the match, which seemed ill advised. And sure enough, even though Arty picked up the victory, Powers lost his god damn mind after the match and drove Arty into the belt with a pile driver. You rarely see pile drivers in WWE, so I actually gasped audibly in shock when Powers used it.
Powers then jumped out of the ring and landed right in front of me, and I froze and had no idea what to do. So I gave him a thumbs up.
Why did I do this? Because I’m a Powers guy and had no idea what else to do.
But I also realize making eye contact with him was a stupid move, much less making a hand gesture at him. So I then put my hands up like he was a cop with a gun and prayed he wouldn’t kill me. As I tried to keep my bladder from emptying, Powers demanded if I liked that match “tough guy”, before slowly walking away.
My life flashed before my eyes people. I should have just knelt before our new God.
Now, it makes sense for Arty to win (he has a big match for the Canadian Championship with Ethan HD in April), and as much as I want Pete Powers to never lose, I am kind of coming around to him being a flawed God.
He’s like a God that doesn’t realize he has a weakness, and so he gets really angry and confused when he’s proven to be mortal. This is why he lashes out. He hasn’t come to terms with the fact that he is not as powerful as he wants to be, so he must punish others for this.
Again, I still think Powers will hold a title in 2016, but I am ok with watching him lose his shit, breaking people in half after he loses, until it happens.
Awards of the Night
Match of the Night:
Cunninghams vs Voros
Just a solid match when I wasn’t expecting much. Also really got the crowd involved in it, and was my favorite wrestled match of the night.
Personality of the Night:
Not to give too much credit to the Chams, but I just really liked what Jack did in the ring on the night. From the awesome suplexes, to the mocking faces he made behind the Voros Twins backs, to the the personality he showed in the ring, you left the show remembering Big Jack.
Storyline of the Night:
Outlaw vs Pesky
Again, I love the idea of this ref who has lost his god damn mind, and is turning into a bounty hunter of sorts.
Move of the Night:
Powers piledriver on Arty
A jumping piledriver, good lord!
Entrance of the Night:
He enters the ring bending over and showing off his rear, and he made sure to do it to all four corners before the match. Kudos on going that extra mile.
Wrestler of the Night:
Even though I am currently at odds with him, he once again showed why he’s a top guy in the company. Dude just always gives it his all, and we should all be thankful for what he puts his knees through just to entertain us fans. Really excited to see him and Ethan HD tear the RCC down April 9th.