5/17 PWG in Burbank: Austin Aries vs. Jay Briscoe, tag team title tournament, Excalibur mocks Kevin Steen's son
Pro Wrestling Guerilla
Report by Saul Stradlin
PWG held Night One of the second annual DDT4 (Dynamite Duumvirate Tag Team Title Tournament) on Saturday night. In the weeks leading to the event, several wrestlers booked for the shows were forced off the cards due to various injuries. The Briscoe Brothers were forced out of the tournament due to an injury to Mark Briscoe, Kota Ibushi (who was set to make his PWG debut this weekend) was injured days before the event, and PWG World Champion Human Tornado suffered a very serious knee injury that will prevent him from being in action for a year.
Before the show, PWG Commissioner of Foods and Beverages Excalibur and PWG Commissioner of Wrestling Dino Winwood did their usual opening promos to welcome the fans to the event and got the crowd hyped for the show.
1. Hook Bomberry over Nemesis. Standard opening match with a good heel/face dynamic. Hook was a very entertaining heel in this match.
2. Los Luchas (Zokre and Phoenix Star) defeated 2.0 (Shane Mathews and Jagged) to advance in the tournament. 2.0 came into this tournament as replacements for The Briscoe Brothers and were making their PWG debut. They are well known for their work in IWS in Canada and CHIKARA Pro. Good match, although there were some awkward moments in this, with 2.0 playing goofy heels, which got over with the crowd really well.
3. TJ Perkins over Candice LeRae. Before the match, TJ Perkins cut a promo discussing how he was always getting the shaft whenever something happened to a PWG star. He complained about his match with Jay Briscoe being canceled because of the Human Tornado's knee injury and issued a challenge to any "prima donna" in the back to a match. His open challenge was answered by Candice LeRae. TJ controlled most of the match, and played to the crowd more than he usually does. Really entertaining match with good heat and told a really good story.
4. Roderick Strong and Jack Evans over Ronin and Scorpio Sky to advance in the tournament. Really good match. The finish came with Evans and Strong hitting the Ode To The Bulldogs, which got a huge reaction from the fans in attendance. Up until this point, this was the second best match of the night behind Perkins/LeRae.
After a 15 minute intermission, Excalibur came out to address the situation involving PWG World Champion Human Tornado and the current situation with the title. Tornado addressed the fans after getting a good reaction from them, and then went back to his heel shtick by claiming that he wasn't vacating the PWG World Title and left with the belt around his waist, leaving Excalibur inside the ring in a state of confusion.
5. El Blazer and Kagetora over The Dynasty (Scott Lost and Joey Ryan) to advance in the tournament. El Blazer was a late replacement in the tournament for Kota Ibushi. This was also the U.S. debut of El Blazer, who got a huge reaction from the fans. Blazer and Lost matched up really well together in this. El Blazer was pretty much the star of this match, as he hit several amazing high flying moves that got over huge with the fans. Kagetora was also very impressive, and this was probably the best tag match of the tournament this far.
6. Austin Aries over Jay Briscoe. Originally, Jay Briscoe was booked to face TJ Perkins, and Aries was booked to face the Human Tornado for the PWG World Title. One of the biggest criticisms the Briscoes get for their match is that they're usually full of crazy moves that should be finishers. This match was really the polar opposite of your usual Briscoes match, and instead was paced well and built up to a really exciting finish.
7. Kevin Steen and El Generico over Super Dragon and Davey Richards to advance in the tournament and to retain the PWG World Tag Team Titles. This match started out really hot, with lots of crowd brawling for the first few minutes. At some point during the match, Super Dragon appeared to have been knocked out and looked as if he suffered a concussion, as he was really out of it for the majority of the match. After the match, Dragon had to be helped to the back by several officials.
During Steen and Generico's celebration, Excalibur came out and berated Steen for not attending PWG shows over the past several months and demanded to know why he was never around. Steen answered by pointing out that he was taking care of his wife and child, who were in attendance.
Excalibur then called Kevin's child ugly, which resulted in Kevin Steen delivering three straight Package Piledrivers onto Excalibur, grabbed his son, and had him pin Excalibur for a three count. After all this, El Generico stole Excalibur's shoes to close out the show.
Notes: Really fun show. As mentioned, Super Dragon appeared to have suffered a concussion during his match as he didn't seem very responsive towards the end of the match. The crowd looked to have been about 375, and were pretty into the show. Tonight's show in Burbank (with a 5:00 p.m. bell time) will feature the final rounds of the tournament. Here are the current matches lined up:
DDT4 Semi-finals/PWG World Tag Team Title Match: Kagetora and El Blazer vs. Kevin Steen and El Generico
DDT4 Semi-finals: Jack Evans and Roderick Strong vs. Los Luchas
Non-tournament: Brandon Bonham vs. TJ Perkins
Plus matches featuring the eliminated teams from the DDT4, Necro Butcher, Austin Aries, Jay Briscoe, and more.
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