CZW AT ECW ARENA LIVE REPORT JULY 20, 2003
Mike Johnson Reporting
Combat Zone Wrestling returned to Philadelphia, PA at the ECW Arena with a Sunday 7/20 matinee, drawing a crowd of 250-300 for the promotion's final TV taping before it's second annual Tournament of Death this weekend. Full results of the show saw:
*Rockin Rebel and Tough Enough 1's Greg Matthews defeated Z-Barr and the debuting Scott Chong of Tough Enough 3. Barr introduced Chong by saying that like Rebel, he had a Tough Enough lackey of his own. Chong looked really green. Barr has bulked up as of late. Rebel pinned Chong with a powerslam and told him "Welcome to the real fn' world." Matthews laid out an open challenge for anyone form any season of Tough Enough to come to CZW to face him, which sounded like foreshadowing of a future angle. Good opener. Barr continues to improve.
*Adam Flash and Ian Knoxx defeated Jon Dahmer and Cory Kastle. Dahmer has slimmed down. Kastle looks like a cross between Trent Acid and Jeff Hardy. OK match.
*Sonjay Dutt won a Gauntlet match to earn a IWA Mid-South Light Heavyweight championship bout later in the night. Others involved in the bout were GQ Styles, Nick Berk, Niles Young, Chris Cash, Deranged (Northeastern indies) and Dereck Frazier. Dutt looked to be on his A-Game here, particularly against Deranged, who's chest and back were all welted up from his bout with Low Ki the night before at ROH Death Before Dishonor.
*Arik Cannon defeated Cody O'Neill.
*NWA champion AJ Styles pinned Jimmy Rave in the first and only NWA championship bout in the ECW Arena (with exception of the NWA tournament doublecross in ECW in August 1994). Styles rolled up Rave for the pin. Rave tried to shake Styles' hand after the bout, but Styles shoved the championship belt in his face and left.
*Nick Mondo and Simply Luscious defeated Johnny Kashmere and Rain in a mixed tag match as Mondo pinned Rain. After some good opening comedy, this promptly fell apart with Luscious looking lost at times. Easily the worst match of the show.
*IWA Mid-South Light Heavyweight champion JC Bailey pinned Sonjay Dutt. The building was completely into the CZW vs. IWA angle as it got tons of heat, including a small faction of IWA fans who cheered for Bailey, which prompted the rest of the building to get behind CZW. Dutt looked the best I have ever seen him here, although he needs a little work on selling as he was working with a "knee injury" that went away and came back. Dutt had Bailey beaten when CZW's B-Boy hit the ring and nailed him with a running shining wizard to set up Bailey's pin. Really great performance by Dutt. CZW Junior Heavyweight champion Ruckus missed the show due to a family emergency.
*Nick Gage defending the "Big Japan Death Match championship" pinned Nate Hatred. Highlight here was a superplex out of the ring onto an assembly of 30-40 chairs that were stacked several levels high. Oddly enough, both men recovered within seconds to get back in the ring and continue. Gage hit a running elbow for the pin.
*Tony Mamaluke defeated Jimmy Rave via submission. Tom Carter/Reckless Youth was scheduled to face Mamaluke but cancelled the day of the show, claiming an injury according to the promotion. Rave had Mamaluke locked in a submission during the bout, only to see AJ Styles, playing heel, run in to break it up.
*In the best match of the show, Trent Acid and B-Boy defeated Homicide and Danny Maff. Incredible bout with tons of back and forth wrestling and false finishes. This, the heat of the CZW-IWA angle, and Dutt's performance are all worth tracking down.
*IWA Mid-South's Ian Rotten pinned John Zandig in a Taipei Death Match (taped fists with glass glued to the fists) to win power to name the final competitor in the Tournament of Death. Zandig had the CZW locker room come to ringside in order to prevent interference in the bloodbath. IWA's JC Bailey attempted to hit the ring and was beaten down by the locker room...except heel faction HI-V (Backseat Boyz, The Messiah, Nate Hatred, and B-Boy). B-Boy interfered. Nick Mondo hit the ring to run off B-Boy. Trent Acid hit Zandig with a yakuza kick to set up Rotten's pin as Kashmere took out Mondo. Rotten named Nate Webb as the final competitor in the Tournament of Death. After Zandig recovered, he and the entire CZW locker room faced off with HI-V who were standing on the lower stage. Zandig ordered the locker room to "attack the traitors" which led to the entertaining scene of the heels running around the Arena in and out of every exit and the stage with the locker room in pursuit as the CZW theme played. A good finish to a good show.
This all leads into CZW promoting it's second annual "Tournament of Death" event on Saturday July 26th in Dover, Delaware at Rack's Bar and Grill. The Tournament will be made up of a number of gimmick matches designed to be heavy on blood and violence with the likes of barbed wire, tables, light tubes, glass, etc. Match stipulations announced thus far are a Fans Bring The Weapons Death Match, a "No Shirts Allowed" 2 out of 3 Log Cabin Lighttube Death Match, and a 200 Lighttube Death Match.
Scheduled for the first round of the tournament are:
*JC Bailey vs. Sick Nick Mondo
*Necro Butcher vs. Nate Webb
*Zandig vs. Corporal Robinson
*Ian Rotten vs. Nick Gage
The show will also feature the continuation of a storyline where wrestlers from Rotten's IWA Mid-South feud with the CZW regulars.