By Chris Vetter, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@chrisvetter73)
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Dreamwave Pro Wrestling “In With the Out Crowd”
Streamed on IndependentWrestling.TV
February 11, 2023 in La Salle, Illinois at the KOC Hall
The crowd is in the 250-350 range. This appears to be a convention center room with really good lighting and a high ceiling. We have a two-man commentary team.
This is my first time watching this promotion, and I tuned in for the four-way featuring El Hijo Del Vikingo.
1. “The Dope Kings” CJ Esparza and Brubaker defeated “Four Star Heroes” Chris Castro and Matt Knicks at 5:08. The 4SH attacked before the bell; they are both a bit chubby and wore blue singlets. The Dope Kings are the babyfaces and wore black. Esparza nailed a dive to the floor. The 4SH worked over Brubaker extensively, but one accidentally clotheslined the other. Esparza hit a Shooting Star elbow drop, and Brubaker jumped on their opponent for the pin. Adequate, short opener.
* Brubaker got on the mic and said they want a tag team title shot.
* Special guest Raven was introduced. He thanked the crowd for coming out. He kept talking, but unannounced guest Tommy Dreamer came to ringside, drawing a huge pop. The commentary team talked about how they will “fight forever.” Raven said he was trying to get himself over and he called Dreamer “tubby.” Dreamer said he wanted to fight; Raven said he wasn’t dressed for it. Unannounced guest Shane Douglas hit the ring! He asked the crowd if they should have “an old-school, three-way dance,” which of course drew a pop. J. Fowler hit the ring and belittled the legends. They of course attacked him and left together. A really crowd-pleasing segment. However… Fowler is in the next match!
2. J. Fowler defeated Axel Rico at 1:38. Rico has big, poofy hair. Fowler has a decent physique, but he asked for a timeout to regroup after that quick beatdown from the ECW legends. Fowler crotched Rico on the top rope, then hit his running buttbump for the pin. He apparently has ‘buns of steel,’ like New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Ryusuke Taguchi.
3. Mike Bennett defeated Nick Aldis at 9:24. Aldis got a huge pop. No Maria nor Mickie tonight. Good reversals to open, a standoff and a handshake, as both are babyfaces tonight. They brawled to the flooor, where they traded some chops in front of the fans. Bennett charged at him, but Aldis caught him with a boot at 3:00. He slammed Bennett back-first into the ring post. In the ring, Aldis hit a delayed vertical suplex for a nearfall.
Aldis applied a standing sleeperhold, but Bennett was able to turn it into a back suplex, and they were both down at 6:30. They got up and traded punches, and this has been really good. Bennett hit a couple of clotheslines and an overhead suplex for a nearfall. Aldis hit a Michinoku Driver, then a top-rope elbow drop for a believable nearfall at 8:00. Bennett hit a second-rope superplex, and he set up for a spear. However, Aldis moved and Bennett crashed into the corner. Aldis went for a Vader Bomb, but Bennett got his knees up to block it. Bennett then nailed the spear for the pin. That was really entertaining; it showed how ‘indy wrestling’ the first two matches were, as this was just worlds better.
* Bennett got on the mic and mentioned Jay Briscoe, drawing a nice pop and a “Thank you, Jay!” chant. “If it wasn’t for Jay and Mark Briscoe, there would be no Mike Bennett, there would be no Matt Taven, there would be no Kingdom. I owe everything in my career to the Briscoe brothers.” He concluded by saying the last thing he said to Jay was that he loved him, and he meant it. He said it was his first match since Jay died. He then said he loved Aldis, too, and they hugged.
4. (Alexander) Hammerstone defeated Lince Dorado at 11:26. I put “Alexander” in parentheses because he was introduced just as “Hammerstone,” and he towers over the luchador. Hammerstone easily pushed Dorado to the mat, and he worked the left arm, and he nailed a powerslam at 3:00. He speared Dorado in the corner and got a nearfall. He hit a backbreaker over his knee for another nearfall and remained in charge. He went for a spear at 6:00, but Dorado moved and Hammerstone crashed into the corner.
Lince hit a top-rope crossbody block for a nearfall. Hammerstone nailed a swinging uranage for a nearfall. Dorado nailed a springboard-back-stunner for a nearfall, then a second-rope moonsault, but Hammerstone got his knees up to block a top-rope moonsault. Dorado hit a suplex at 10:00. He went for another handspring-back-move, but Hammerstone caught him this time, spun Dorado around, and nailed a faceplant. Dorado went for a sunset flip, but as Hammerstone went to block it, he ripped off Dorado’s mask! Dorado went to cover his face, and Hammerstone sat down on him for the pin. The commentary team questioned if the mask removal was intentional or not. Good big man/smaller man matchup.
5. Little Guido, 12 Gaige, and Hunter Holdcraft defeated “Those Damn Coyotes” Connor Hopkins, Brooks Berna, and Damien Deschain in a six-man tag at 12:30. It started two-on-three. TDC, the heels, beat up their opponents until mystery partner Little Guido arrived, drawing a nice pop. These are five very young kids along with Guido. Guido tagged in at 4:30 and out-mat-wrestled a tall, lanky kid. This broke down into a “Tracy Smothers dance-off.” “Is he dancing or is he having a medical episode?” one commentator said of a heel’s dancing. Funny. The heels took turns beating up 12 Gaige.
Guido finally made the hot tag and hit a Russian leg sweep and a basement dropkick for a nearfall. He hit a Sicilian Slice legdrop for a nearfall, then an Unprettier faceplant for the pin. Decent action; the kids tried hard and are learning. Guido really wasn’t in the ring that long, but the crowd loved what he did.
6. Hartenbower defeated 1 Called Manders at 11:46. Manders (think Stan Hansen or “Outlaw” Ron Bass) comes to the ring to Bon Jovi’s “Dead or Alive.” Hartenbower is white, bald, with a goatee, and he’s a brawler. An intense lockup, and Manders chopped him in the corner, and they traded multiple, multiple chops. They brawled to the floor at 2:30 and continued hitting chops in front of the fans; this venue is packed and I believe it is a legit sellout, as fans were standing against the back wall. They brawled over the guardrail and among the fans.
Manders suplexed Hartenbower on the cement floor at 5:00; Hartenbower barely made it into the ring before being counted out. However, Manders stayed in charge of the offense. Hartenbower hit a suplex at 9:00. Manders hit a DDT for a nearfall. They got up and traded stiff forearm shots, and Hartenbower hit a spear for a nearfall at 11:00. Manders went for a Fujiwara Armbar, but Hartenbower somehow rolled him over and scored a fluke pin. Good brawl. They had a show of respect, but Manders attacked him, and they brawled to the back.
7. Gringo Loco defeated El Hijo Del Vikingo, Rey Horus and Black Taurus in a four-way to retain the Dream Wave Alternative Title at 12:13. Seconds in, Taurus tossed Vikingo over the top rope onto Loco. Horus hit a huracanrana on Taurus and they had a standoff. Vikingo hit a missile dropkick on both. Loco and Vikingo traded lucha reversals, with Vikingo briefly standing on Loco’s shoulders before hitting a huracanrana. WOW!
Horus and Taurus climbed back in the ring and traded more lucha reversals. Vikingo hit a series of kicks on Loco at 3:30, then a cool springboard huracanrana. Vikingo nailed a top-rope corkscrew press to the floor on all three, and the fans were on their seats. Just a crazy flip. In the ring, Vikingo missed a top-rope Phoenix Splash but landed on hsi feet. Loco hit a Clout Cutter on Horus for a nearfall at 5:00. Taurus nailed a pair of backbreakers over his knee on Vikingo, then his pop-up Samoan Drop on Rey Horus. Loco hit a top-rope Spanish Fly on Taurus. Vikingo and Horus hit simultaneous Shooting Star Presses; they hopped up and hit Mafia Kicks on each other, and everyone was down. The crowd chanted, “All these guys!” at 8:00.
Vikingo hit a flip in the corner into a huracanrana on Taurus for a nearfall. Horus hit a tornado DDT on Loco, then a flip dive over the turnbuckle to the floor. Vikingo hit a dive over the top rope. Vikingo hit a springboard 630 Splash to the floor on everyone at 10:30. Vikingo then hit a springboard Phoenix Splash from the outside of the ring on Loco for a nearfall. Gringo hit a top-rope bodyslam on Vikingo to the mat. Gringo and Horus fought on the ropes in the corner, and Loco nailed his swinging powerbomb to the mat to pin Horus. An incredible lucha showcase.
* Gringo Loco got on the mic and said they competed in Tijuana, Mexico, a day earlier and slept on an airport floor before getting here, and it was all worth it. The crowd thanked them.
* “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan hit the ring and got a nice pop. He thanked the fans for their support. He looked healthy.
8. Dan the Dad defeated Arik Cannon at 8:25. Dan came out holding his coffee mug and his baseball cap. The crowd was fully behind Dan, who is a couple inches taller than Arik. Typical Dan comedy, as he tripped Arik and got a school yard takedown. This comedy is a perfect ‘breather’ after that high-energy four-way. Arik took control and worked him over, and the crowd taunted him with a “Daddy issues!” chant. Dan got up and hit some jab punches at 5:00.
Dan hit a running back elbow in the corner, then a standing neckbreaker for a nearfall. Cannon fired back with a T-Bone Suplex for a nearfall. Dan hit a second-rope crossbody block for a nearfall at 7:30. Arik ripped off Dan’s glasses, drawing massive boos. Dan nailed a Death Valley Driver for the pin. That was a fun comedy match.
9. Christian Rose defeated Vic Capri to win the Dream Wave Title at 14:22. Rose has long blond hair and wore a bandana around his head, and makes me think of a taller Silas Young. Capri is short, thick, with a large chest tattoo, and makes me think of Davey Richards; he’s been wrestling more than 20 years. Capri applied a Crippler Crossface at 2:30. Rose pretended like he was hit by a manager, so Capri’s manager was ordered to the back. Rose hit a side suplex. Capri hit a running knee to the jaw for a nearfall. Rose snapped Capri’s fingers, and he was in charge.
Capri hit a Helluva Kick, then a T-Bone suplex at 8:00, then a knee strike, and they were both down. Rose hit a modified Go To Sleep for a nearfall, and he remained in control. Rose accidentally kicked the ref at 11:00. Capri nailed a Dragon Suplex. Chandler Hopkins hit the ring and hit Capri. Several wrestlers hopped in the ring and brawled as the ref was down. A female wrestler got in the ring and she hit a tornado DDT on Rose. Capri hit a Sliced Bread on Rose; the ref was pushed into the ring and we had a two-count at 13:00. They fought on the ropes in the corner, and Rose nailed a second-rope Styles Clash for the pin. New champion!
Final Thoughts: The four-way lucha match was absolutely fantastic. Like I said, I watched the show just for that match. Aldis-Bennett was really good and earned second best. I’ll go with a strong Hammerstone-Laredo match for third place, just ahead of the main event.
This was a fun show. The first two matches didn’t interest me much, but the well-known wrestlers delivered, and the crowd loved seeing five legends. The show clocked in at two-and-a-half hours.
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