AAW returned to Davenport, IA tonight for what proved to be a fine show. On the card for the evening, Silas Young would defend his AAW Heavyweight Championship against the winner of a 20 Man Battle Royal. And in the night’s main event, the AAW Tag Team Champions, The House of Truth take on the newly reunited Age of the Fall.
In typical fashion for shows in Davenport, Mark Storm started us off announcing some of the highlights of the card (I’ve already done that, so I’ll spare you from listing them again). After highlighting out matches, Storm informs the Davenport crowd that he is stepping down and this will be his last night. The crowd is clearly disappointed with this as Mark has been a fixture in Indy wrestling here in Davenport for quite some time. His farewell speech is heart felt and he explains that he’s just can’t give AAW his all right now.
Once Storm leaves the ring, our ring announcer tells us the Battle Royal is next. Before the participants come out, though, AAW Champion Silas Young swaggers out to the ring. Young gets on the microphone and talks about losing the tag match he was in last month with Jimmy Jacobs getting the pin. The fans tell him he sucks a lot and he taunts them right back, calling them “lazy, complacent, and with no aspirations.” Unlike the fans, he can’t call in when he’s got a 103 degree fever. He blames that and his partner, Jay Bradley, on the loss last month in Davenport. While the crowd chants for him to “Shut the hell up,” he proclaims that he always gets the job done when the belt is on the line.
Battle Royal – Winner to face Silas Young for the AAW Heavyweight Championship
More or less everyone in the locker room tonight was a part of this battle royal. It was difficult for me to keep track of who was in it as no names were announced, and some of the eliminations were not announced. So I’ll list who I know was in it and if it falls short of the 20, I apologize. So here’s the list of known competitors: Knight Wagner, Jordan McEntire, Shane Hollister, Matt “Krotch” Mayday, Mike Sydal, Danny Daniels, Tyler Black, Jimmy Jacobs, Dash Phoenix, Tweek Phoenix, Trik Davis, CJ Esparza, Brett Gakiya, Keith Walker, Donavan Cain, Jason Lite, a couple of trainees, and a partridge in a pear tree. The ring was very crowded when the bell rang and it didn’t take long for Knight Wagner to be the first man eliminated.
Once Wagner got eliminated, the eliminations came hot and heavy, so much so that not everyone was announced as they were thrown over the top rope and I didn’t catch everyone when they left the ring. One highlight was “The Human Massacre” eliminating Tyler Black. Walker put Black on the apron, and then knocked him to the floor, furthering the heat between them. Mike Sydal came to try and take the mammoth Walker out, but when quickness goes up against size in a battle royal, size tends to be favored. It was no different here as Walker easily tosses Sydal over the top and out of the match. The remaining wrestlers would then all gang up on The Human Massacre, eliminating him from the match.
When whittled down the five men remaining were Danny Daniels, Trik Davis, Krotch, Jimmy Jacobs and Shane Hollister. The ring was clearly divided with Danny Daniels and Trik Davis (who have wrestled as a tag team in Davenport before and were Scott County Wrestling’s Tag Team Champions at one point in time) were in one corner with Jimmy, Krotch, and Shane in the other. Jacobs, Mayday, and Hollister chase Daniels and Davis out of the ring (under the ropes so as they wouldn’t be eliminated) and the three go at it. It doesn’t take long for Danny and Trik to come back in. Jimmy is the next to get eliminated, teetering on the apron. Credit AAW Heavyweight Champion Silas Young with the assist pulling Jacobs to the ground. Hollister and Daniels take the fight to each other, which is expected between these two rivals. Krotch climbs the turnbuckle and lands a double dropkick on Danny an Trik. They come back though, working together to eliminate Matt Mayday. Shane Hollister gets between Trik Davis and Danny Daniels and Danny charges him. Shane ducks and Danny’s clothesline lands cleanly on Trik Davis, eliminating him from the match. Danny then avoids Shane by ducking out of the ring. Hollister has none of it, though and flies through the middle ropes onto Daniels. The two fight on the floor for a while, but in the end Shane Hollister eliminates Danny Daniels and earning himself a date with Silas a little later.
Winner: Shane Hollister
No rating on the battle royal, it was a good match and when it got down to the nitty gritty, the match was what you’d expect a battle royal to be at that point. Overall, the wrestlers involved put on a decent show and they gave the big local face the win. They also gave the local fans a taste of what Berwyn, IL will see in one week’s time.
Dr. X vs. Knight Wagner w/Jordan McEntire
This match was signed last month after Dr. X faced Johnny Wisdom. The match kicks off with a Lou Thez Press on Wagner that nets a 2 count. X looks to follow u by leaping off the 2nd turnbuckle but he gets a dropkick to his face instead. Wagner takes over from there, complaining to the ref about a particular fan calling him “X-Pac” (you know, because the rest of the crowd wasn’t chanting it right along with that one fan). Knight and the Doctor go back and forth through most of this short match, but in the end, Wagner counters a full nelson and ends up with the win. His partner and fellow member of the Chan Clan, Jordan McEntire comes in to beat down Dr. X, attempting to unmask him. X fends them off, however. As he leaves the ring, he apologizes to the fans for the loss. His voice is very familiar. Somehow, I feel like I’ve heard it before, but I just can’t place it.
Rating: * ½
Winner: Knight Wagner
I can’t bring myself to completely pan his match. I’m a fan of Knight Wagner’s in ring work. I don’t know much about Dr. X, though I can speculate as to his identity. Ok, I know who the hell he is; I’m a wrestling mark. I won’t spoil the surprise here. Last month I did pan the Dr. X match against Johnny Wisdom, but I was more unhappy with the placement on the card, though the match wasn’t the greatest thing ever (mostly thanks to Johnny Wisdom). This month, Knight and Dr. X actually had a tolerable square off that furthered a lower card story.
Trik Davis vs. Mike Sydal
One of the two men I get the privilege of interviewing in Granite City makes his AAW debut. Mike Sydal is the brother of WWE’s Evan Bourne (known on the Indy circuit as Matt Sydal). And he’s every bit as high flying and entertaining as his brother. He gets his AAW Audition in this match against Trik Davis. Despite Trik’s involvement in the match, this one was actually pretty good. It began with an exchange of holds, Davis locking in an armbar but Sydal using some acrobatics to twist out of it. Sydal takes Davis to the mat a few times using arm tosses leading to holds, but Trik fights back and takes control. He’s able to keep the high flier down and slows the pace. Davis attempts a Superplex, but Mike fights him off and leaps off the top rope, his knees connecting with Trik’s face. Mike Sydal will pick up the pace before landing a standing moonsault but can’t come away with the pin. Trik Davis fights his way back, fending off fast offence and hitting a “codebreaker” on Sydal for the win.
Winner: Trik Davis
This was an enjoyable match, but they usually are when Mike Sydal is involved. The young man has as much talent as his WWE Superstar brother and it shows. I’m not just a little disappointed that Sydal came into AAW’s Auditions and got a loss. I would have liked to see Sydal become a more permanent member to the AAW roster, however, he put on a fine match in Davenport for AAW and hopefully the fans will show their appreciation.
“The Human Massacre” Keith Walker vs. Matt “Krotch” Mayday
Krotch comes out very weary of getting in the ring with the AAW Behemoth known as Keith Walker, and with good reason. Walker is a monster. He comes to the ring wearing a chain around his neck and has the potential for destruction everywhere he goes. He has told the Berwyn crowd that he will not wrestle for them, he’ll only compete in Davenport and he has one man on his mind all the time, Tyler Black. His focus on Black, however, didn’t stop him from manhandling Matt Mayday tonight. Walker charges Krotch as soon as he’s in the ring. About the only offence Matt can get out is lifting his feet to stop the initial charge, then the Human Massacre lives up to his name, slaughtering Krotch both inside and out of the ring while asking the crowd repeatedly “whose the man now?!” After slamming Krotch’s back into the ring post a few times, he rolls Krotch back into the ring, but the smaller guy has some flight left in him. Mayday connects with a jawbreaker, avoids a spear and quickens the pace. He uses a low blow to give some breathing room, but when he attempts his tornado stunner finisher, he can’t pull the mammoth Walker along with him. Keith turns him inside out with a lariat and it’s all over but the crying.
Winner: Keith Walker
The Human Massacre continues to attack Krotch after the match. A couple of wrestlers I didn’t recognize (I asked a couple people and couldn’t get their names) come in to help, but are fended off. Tyler Black comes out with that fantastic equalizer, the steel chair, and Walker flees. The two rivals exchange words as Keith heads to the back. Mayday is helped to the back by the two men who came to his aid.
3 Team Scramble Match The Hybrids (Donavan Cain & Jason Lite w/Ms. Erin) vs. Zero Gravity (CJ Esparza & Brett Gakiya) vs. The Phoenix Twins (Dash & Tweek Phoenix)
The match begins with Jason Lite and Brett Gakiya in the ring. Lite cinches in a headlock and Gakiya reverses it into a hammerlock and they begin to exchange holds. After Gakiya gets the better of Lite, he tags out to Dash Phoenix. The Hybrids both go to their corner and begin taunting Brett and Dash while they attempt to fight. Dash, though, gets in their face, asking if they want back in the ring and the Hybrids drop to the floor. Then both the Twins and Zero Gravity exchange partners and the pace of the match picks up. Again the Hybrids are taunting from their corner, and again, they duck down to the floor when asked if they wanted to come in. Dash Phoenix has had enough of their games, though, and he charges across the ring, leaping over the turnbuckles and ring post onto both Hybrids. The twins bring Cain into the ring. During the exchange between the Twins and Hybrids, Tweek gets tripped up by the Hybrid’s manager, Ms. Erin, leaving Jason Lite (the legal man at that point) to take over. Zero Gravity makes a blind tag to Tweek as he bounds off the ropes and they reenter the match, exchanging control with the Hybrids. Lite sends Gakiya to the floor and the Hybrids start to dictate pace once more. Lite has Gakiya down and knocks CJ Esparza off the apron to the floor, but Brett makes the tag to Dash Phoenix and both the Twins and Zero Gravity begin to clean house. As the match gets out of control, The AAW Tag Team Champions, the House of Truth, come out to the ring. During the chaos, they clock Tweek with one of the title belts. Zero Gravity takes advantage of the situation, pinning Tweek for the win.
Rating: *** ½
Winners: Zero Gravity (Brett Gakiya & CJ Esparza)
Dash is looking around wondering what happened and the crowd tells him, so after the match he heads off to the locker room after Christian Able and Josh Raymond, chair in hand. This was a great way to head to intermission. The match was fast paced and enjoyable to watch. Zero Gravity and The Phoenix Twins seem to always be able to put on a good show and the Hybrids are definitely making waves in AAW.
Jordan McEntire (W/Knight Wagner) vs. Jeremy Wyatt
Following the intermission, The Chan Clan is back, this time in reverse rolls. The match is fast paced as McEntire and Wyatt exchange moves. McEntire takes control of the match, bringing Jeremy Wyatt down and going up top. Wyatt gets his knees up, however and starts to move quickly around the ring. Wyatt seems to have the match well in hand, but Knight Wagner climbs onto the apron to distract him and it proves to be costly. Jordan McEntire locks in a double underhook and drops Wyatt on his head for the victory.
Rating: * ¾
Winner: Jordan McEntire
Following the match, Knight Wagner comes in with the microphone and calls out his uncle, Derek St. Holmes to interview them. Derek comes slowly to the ring. When he gets in, he tells us about Knight running around in his underwear when he was three. St. Holmes doesn’t want to get physical with his nephew, but Knight says he can kick Derek’s butt any time, any place. The AAW commentator knocks both Knight Wagner and Jordan McEntire down and says that Wagner will face Dr. X again next time AAW is in Davenport. If Wagner wins, Dr. X will unmask. If the Doctor wins, well, Knight’s not going to like his uncle. St. Holmes will take Knight over his knee and spank him.
AAW Heavyweight Championship Shane Hollister vs. Silas Young (c.)
This match is a preview of what Berwyn will get in one week’s time. But it has added meaning here as Shane Hollister is AAW’s hometown face in Davenport. The fans have grown to know and love Shane and his abilities. They’re clearly behind him tonight as the bell rings and he locks up with Silas Young. In the early goings, they exchange holds. Silas taunts Shane repeatedly, telling him this is his “Audition” (gee, I wonder where he got that from? Probably the same place I did when I used it talking about Sydal’s match). Silas also wants Shane to show him what he’s got. Young takes control and the match briefly spills onto the floor. The fans work to rally Hollister as Silas dominates and taunts his opponent. Young definitely shows why he’s the AAW Champion, as he’s all over Shane Hollister. But Shane comes back with a vengeance, hitting a backbreaker/neckbreaker combo. Young kicks out of the subsequent pin attempt and looks to take control again, but Shane springboards into a tornado DDT and ascends the corner. The Champ pushes referee Waldo Peeps into the ropes, knocking Hollister onto the turnbuckle, but Shane fends Silas off when he comes to the corner. He leaps off the top rope, but is met with Young’s knees. Both men rise quickly after this exchange and a superkick sends Silas Young to the floor. Shane follows, flipping over the top rope onto the AAW Champion, but when he rolls Young back into the ring he’s attacked by Danny Daniels, who sends Shane’s head crashing into the steel steps.
Daniels leaves Hollister for dead and the ring girl comes out to assist him. She coaxes Shane back to his feet and helps him roll back into the ring. Silas quickly covers Shane, but the hometown hero kicks out. Young picks up Hollister and puts him onto his shoulders but Shane maneuvers himself off behind the Champ. Shane attempts a kick, but Young grabs his foot. Hollister missed with the first enziguri, but the one on the way back connects. Young comes back, however, hitting his backbreaker/clothesline combination but that fails to put Shane away. Shane is bleeding from above the eye, but it could have been a result of Danny Daniels attack. Silas lands a Fisherman Brainbuster, but Hollister kicks out again, fighting off another flurry of taunts. Both end up on the mat and the ref starts his 10 count. At 8, they’re both up to their knees and exchanging blows. Hollister connects with a kick then flies off the top rope onto Young. Silas kicks out after 2, much to the fans disappointment. Shane signals the end, but Silas doesn’t let that come to fruition. He sets up for his signature headstand into a twisting moonsault, but Shane puts up his knees. They both get back up where Silas pulls Shane down in a roll up, grabbing a handful of tights to retain the AAW Championship.
Rating: *** ½
Winner: Silas Young
The only point of contention I have to the entire night’s booking is the ending of this match. The match was a brilliant showing of skills from both Young and Hollister. I’m glad that Young did not win clean because he is 1) the company’s top heel, and 2) in Shane Hollister’s home town. What bugged me was that the grabbing of the tights just seemed too close to a clean win for the great match these two put on. Since Danny Daniels got involved, I think it would’ve enhanced Hollister’s credibility as a contender if they had allowed Danny to cost him the victory.
AAW Tag Team Championships Age of the Fall (Tyler Black & Jimmy Jacobs) vs. The House of Truth (Josh Raymond & Christian Able)
All for men get in each others faces at the start of this contest, but it’ll be Jacobs and Raymond kicking off the match. Josh d*cks out of the ring quickly and he and Jimmy toy with each other before Raymond takes a shot at both members of the reunited Age of the Fall. Jimmy Jacobs comes right back in the right, causing Raymond to make the tag to Christian Able. Jimmy hits him with a series of rights before Able takes him down. But the fishnet clad Champion turns his attention to Tyler Black to taunt the newly crowned ROH Champion. Jimmy gets back up and comes right up behind Able. Tyler comes into the match and takes it to Able but he avoids a ducks a blow and tags in Raymond. The House of Truth team up on Black, making frequent tags to keep the fresh competitor in. During a tag and double team, they both pull Black off the mat, but Tyler maneuvers to his feet and takes them both down with a big double clothesline. Now it’s AotF’s turn to isolate and make frequent tags. Black fires up the crowd, but this is a very back and forth battle. Able attempts to gain control, whipping Tyler Black into the ropes, but he does it too close to Jimmy Jacobs, who tags his partner’s back and the two work together take down the House of Truth.
The House of Truth manages to get Jimmy Jacobs isolated again. They send Jimmy to the floor near their corner. When one goes to attack Jimmy outside the ring, Tyler stalks over to back them off, allowing the other to attack Jacobs. Jimmy gets maneuvered back into the ring, who gets a tag to Black, but it was outside the ref’s field of vision, so he’s forced back to the corner. Able and Raymond take turns with Jacobs, making a couple of pin attempts, one of which Tyler comes in to break up. Neither man can find the key to putting Jimmy away and Jacobs manages to spear Christian Able and tag in Black. The ROH Champion comes in and cleans house, clearing the ring and flipping over the ropes onto both his opponent. He sends Josh Raymond back in and climbs up, leaping off the top rope, but doesn’t get the 3 count. Able comes in to try and stop Tyler, but he can’t swing the momentum to his favor and gets a frankensteiner off the top turnbuckle for his troubles. Tyler and Jimmy put Raymond in a Tree of Woe and hit a double dropkick but again the Age of the Fall can’t get a pinfall. The House of Truth come back, connecting with their signature double team move on Jacobs leading to another kick out. Utter chaos breaks out and this match is out of control. Jacobs hits a Contra Code, Raymond misses on a corkscrew moonsault. Out of sheer frustration, Able slides out of the ring and grabs one of the title belts. Referee Waldo Peeps isn’t going to allow him to use it against the Age of the Fall, but the distraction is enough for Raymond to get a belt of his own and slide into the ring. The Phoenix Twins, looking for payback from earlier, come out to the ring, preventing Josh Raymond from doing any damage and allowing Jimmy Jacobs to lock in the End Time, his signature Guillotine Choke for the victory.
Rating: *** ¾
Winners (and new AAW Tag Team Champions): Age of the Fall (Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black)
Well, for the Davenport faithful, AAW did not disappoint. This was a fantastic show capped off with two great title matches.