GCW “The Old Me” results: Vetter’s review of The Briscoes vs. Mance Warner and Matthew Justice in a High Incident scaffold match, Minoru Suzuki vs. 2 Cold Scorpio, Alex Shelley vs. Nick Wayne, Bandido vs. Joey Janela, Effy and Allie Katch vs. Gringo Loco and ASF for the GCW Tag Titles, ACH vs. Chris Dickinson

By Chris Vetter, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@chrisvetter73)

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GCW “The Old Me”
Streamed on FITE TV
April 23, 2022 in Detroit, Michigan at Harpos Concert Theater

Unfortunately, the big takeaway from this show is the repeated loss of audio, marring the quality of the event. This show also is a tale of two halves; a first-half with good mat-based wrestling, and a second half filled with hardcore matches and violent brawling.

This venue appears to be a nightclub and the ring was really poorly lit. Really, really bad, and that is going to be distracting. There is one light more or less centered above the ring, but the whole left side of the ring is in the shadows. On the plus side, the ringside cameras are decent.

Dave Prazak and Kevin Gill provided commentary. This ring seems really small to me. The building is PACKED; perhaps 500 fans are in the building and they are hot. The show opened with five competitors already in the ring.

1. Tony Deppen defeated Yoya. Jordan Oliver, Billie Starkz, Steve Scott in a five-way scramble at 10:45. Everyone immediately began hitting big moves, and they were going at a frenetic pace. Billie hit some hard chops on Deppen at 3:00. Yoya, a tiny Cambodian man, hit Jordan Oliver with a hard kick in the corner. Starkz hit a Swanton Bomb on Oliver for a nearfall.

Yoya and Starkz traded offense, and he is smaller than her. Deppen hit a top-rope superplex on Billie and got a nearfall. Deppen and Oliver traded hard mid-ring blows at 6:00. Deppen dove through the ropes on Oliver, and they landed deep in the crowd. Scott hit a top-rope flip dive. Yoya climbed onto the stage, then onto speakers. He hit a dive, perhaps 25 feet down, onto the other four. That was insane.

Back in the ring, Starkz hit a Dragon Suplex on Deppen. Oliver hit a German Suplex on Starkz, then nailed a running forearm for a believable nearfall. Scott hit a running knee on Oliver for a nearfall at 10:00. The audio cut out. Oliver hit a top-rope Stunner on Scott; Deppen ran in the ring, shoved Oliver to the floor, and he pinned the prone Scott. Energetic fast-paced opener with that insane dive from Yoya highlighting this match.

* The audio is still entirely out. No commentary team, no sound of the crowd.

2. Alex Shelley defeated Nick Wayne at 11:21. I can’t believe this match is going on second. Wayne hit an enzuigiri early, and Shelley rolled to the floor. Wayne went to dive, but Shelley cut him off at 2:30. (FITE TV lost the signal to the building momentarily; when it returned, we had audio back!) Shelley applied a Figure Four leglock. Wayne hit a double stomp to the chest but he caught some of Shelley’s arm, and Alex sold the pain.

Wayne hit a Fisherman’s Suplex for a nearfall at 6:00. Shelley hit a suplex that dropped Wayne stomach-first, for a nearfall. Wayne hit a double stomp on the arm and Shelley continued to sell the pain in the limb. Wayne applied a Fujiwara Armbar at 9:00. Shelley hit a belly-to-belly suplex into the corner, then the Shellshock faceplant for a nearfall. Shelley hit another Shellshock for the pin; Wayne’s foot may have been on the ropes but the ref didn’t see it. Tremendous match and I’m still stunned this went on second.

3. Chris Dickinson defeated ACH at 12:51. Dickinson is so hot right now in his return from his hip injury. He is much larger than ACH. So glad to see ACH still wrestling after a short-lived retirement. Mat wrestling early, then a few shoves, and they traded hard chops. ACH hit a huracanrana at 3:30. They are really trading forearms and chops, and this is physical. Dickinson hit a German release suplex at 6:30.

ACH hit a pair of German suplexes, and we lost audio again. Ugh. Then the video feed was lost for maybe 30 seconds; we have audio and visual again, and they were fighting on the floor at 10:00. In the ring, Dickinson applied a Figure Four leg lock. ACH suplexed him into the corner. ACH nailed a brainbuster for a nearfall at 12:00. Dickinson applied an STF submission hold, and ACH tapped out. This topped even my highest expectations.

* Dickinson got on the mic and called ACH back into the ring, and he put him over.

4. Effy and Allie Katch defeated Gringo Loco and ASF to retain the GCW Tag Titles at 13:39. Katch is actually bigger than the slight ASF. I still must object to intergender matches, though. Effy and Gringo Loco opened, and the crowd is being Effy. He tied Loco in the “Gay-rantula” in the ropes. Katch and ASF entered at 2:30, and she tied up his wrist. ASF hit a huracanrana on her. ASF hit a huracanrana on Effy, after leaping off of Loco’s shoulders. Nice spot.

ASF hit a flip dive to the floor, and Loco hit one seconds later, as we once again lose audio. Ugh. Luckily it was back in 10 seconds. ASF hit a frogsplash and Loco hit a moonsault at 6:30. Effy hit a backbreaker over his knee on ASF. Allie re-entered the ring and tied up ASF. ASF hit a DDT on her, then he hit a top-rope huracanrana on Effy. Loco hit a frogsplash for a nearfall at 9:30. Effy hit a double blockbuster.

Allie hit Stinger Splashes then rolling cannonballs on each opponent. She hit a double Northern Lights suplex on both opponents. She hit a second-rope superplex, then a Death Valley Driver on ASF, but Gringo caught her with a top-rope diving stunner at 11:30. Loco hit his spinning top-rope powerbomb, but Allie made the save. Gringo accidentally hit ASF with a superkick. Effy hit a top-rope Doomsday-style Rough Rider legdrop as Allie held ASF, and Effy pinned ASF. The crowd really enjoyed this.

5. Joey Janela defeated Bandido at 11:53. The crowd loudly cheered Bandido, who came to the ring in a cool metalic black robe. Prazak said Janela is limping, and Janela sold a foot injury, then he attacked Bandido, and the crowd booed. Bandido hit a huracanrana; he went for a top-rope move but Janela cut him off with a forearm. Janela tore at the eye holes of the mask at 2:30 and the crowd booed. They brawled to the floor. Back in the ring, Bandido did a one-hand military press, then slammed him to the mat for a nearfall at 5:00.

Bandido hit a frogsplash, and the crowd chanted for Eddie Guerrero. Bandido hit a flip dive to the floor, with them landing in the crowd. The audio went out for a fourth time. Janela hit a moonsault press back into the ring. Bandido hit a superkick; Janela hit a clothesline and they were both down at 7:30. Sound is back. They traded punches. Bandido went for the 21-Plex but Janela was able to hold onto the ropes. Janela hit a jumping piledriver for a nearfall at 9:30.

In a cool spot, Janela leaped off the stage toward the ring, but Bandido caught him with a stunner. Bandido nailed the 21-Plex but Janela kicked out. Janela then got a rollup with a handful of tights, to score the cheap pin. The crowd loudly booed.

6. Minoru Suzuki defeated 2 Cold Scorpio at 13:47. Minoru came out first to a massive pop. Scorpio danced to the ring; he’s a bit bloated these days. The in-ring announcer ran through a list of each man’s accolades. Standing switches to open. The crowd was hot. Suzuki no-sold a punch and the crowd chanted “You f—ed up!” at Scorpio. Suzuki no-sold two headbutts, and he hit one of his own at 4:30. They traded hard chops; audio went in and out again, before going completely out. They brawled to the floor. Too bad as audio completely silent as they chopped each other in front of the fans.

Sound returned at 9:00 as they re-enter the ring. Suzuki worked over the wrist and fingers. Scorpio hit a second-rope flipping legdrop at 11:30, then a top-rope twisting splash for a nearfall. Suzuki leveled him with repeated forearm shots. Scorpio missed a top-rope moonsault, and Suzuki immediately applied a sleeper. He nailed the Gotch-style piledriver for the pin. Fun match. Gill said this could have easily been the main event of the show.

* The in-ring commentator warned fans to back up because there would be glass in the next match. Several light tubes were set up in the ring.

7. John Wayne Murdoch defeated Hoodfoot in a hardcore match at 9:45. JWM suplexed Hoodfoot through a pane of glass set up in the corner to get the pin. Murdoch got on the mic and called out Alex Colon. Colon came to the ring holding a bundle of light tubes. Murdoch jawed at him and vowed he would win a hardcore tournament.

8. Alex Colon defeated Jimmy Lloyd in a hardcore match at 11:30. The audio went out again; I have lost track of how many times this happened. Six maybe? Colon hit a top-rope double stomp through a pane of glass onto Lloyd for the pin. The ring is just covered in glass shards. Murdoch came back to the ring and argued more with Colon. They agreed to fight June 5 in New Jersey.

* There was a long break in the action while the ring was cleaned and a large scaffolding structure was set up around the ring…

9. Jay Briscoe and Mark Briscoefought. Mance Warner and Matthew Justice in a “High Incident” (scaffold) match was ruled a draw at 15:29. There is a double-decker layer of tables set up in the ring. The scaffold is perhaps 15 feet above the ring. To win, you must throw an opponent off the scaffolding. The Briscoes attacked to kickstart the match. They brawled on the floor and threw chairs at each other. There are just too many fans close by. Mark powerbombed Justice threw a table in the ring. More brawling on the floor; I just can’t believe how close fans are to these flying chairs.

Justice hit a Russian leg sweep on Mark Briscoe as they were 10 feet off the floor, and they crashed through a table at 5:30. Mance cut Jay’s head with a shard of a wooden table. Matthew Justice climbed two-thirds of the way up the scaffolding and leaped onto a Briscoe. They brawled up onto the stage, where Justice hit a suplex on Mark at 9:00. Justice and Warner gave Mark a team slam through the table as they continued to fight on the stage (the stage, for concerts, has to be 10 feet off the floor). Mance threw Mark off the stage through a table on the floor at 12:00.

Mance and Jay traded blows in the ring; several tables are set up in the ring on either side of them. All four are in the ring now, and they traded chair shots. Mark Briscoe and Matthew Justice climbed the scaffolding and the crowd chanted, “Please don’t die!” They both jumped off the scaffolding, dropping onto their respective opponents who were lying on tables. Because they jumped at the same time, it was ruled a draw.

Final Thoughts: The show clocked in at just over three hours. I am hopeful they have a “master copy” of this show from the building, with sound and commentary restored. While the audio and video issues were definitely distracting, viewers got to see the finishes of all matches. There really was just a few seconds without video.

There was a lot to like about this show, with Suzuki-Scorpio, Bandido-Janela, Shelley-Wayne, and that fast-paced scramble all impressing. Janela’s 12-minute match had more action than his 28-minute slog a night earlier. I thought ACH-Dickinson would be a contrast of styles because I tend to think of ACH as a high-flyer, but he traded hard blows and had a great match with Chris.

I watched the closing seconds of the two death matches. Those matches are an acquired taste, and I’m sure a lot of fans there will rave about those matches. The Briscoes match was violent yet felt a bit safe; at least more safe than the handful of scaffolding matches I’ve ever seen before. I guess I prefer that the two jumped off the scaffolding on their own accord, which is likely a lot safer than if someone had tossed them off and they had little control of their fall.


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