By Chris Vetter, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@chrisvetter73)
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GCW “Going and Going”
Streamed on FITE+
November 17, 2023 in Seattle, Washington at Washington Hall
This venue has been used frequently by Defy Wrestling and the ring is really well-lit. Attendance is maybe 600; I can’t see everyone but I know it’s a sellout. Veda Scott and Dave Prazak provided live commentary. Unsurprisingly, a lot of Pacific Northwest talent will make their GCW debut.
1. Jordan Oliver defeated Alec Price to retain the JCW World Heavyweight Title at 12:58. What a huge match to open with. These two have competed many times before and were just in a three-way a few weeks ago. Price competed in Massachusetts about 24 hours ago. Oliver hit a deep armdrag. Price was annoyed the crowd was fully behind Oliver. Oliver hit a dropkick at 3:30. Price hit a tornado DDT, then a dive over the top rope. In the ring, Price hit a spinning back fist and a back suplex for a nearfall at 6:00. They both went for dropkicks and both crashed to the mat. Oliver hit a Plancha to the floor.
They fought on the top rope, and Oliver hit a Frankensteiner at 8:30, then a top-rope moonsault for a nearfall. Oliver set up for the Clout Cutter, but Price kicked him to the floor. Price then hit a tornado DDT onto the hard floor, earning a “holy shit!” chant. In the ring, Price hit a doublestomp to the chest as Oliver was tied in the Tree of Woe, and he got a nearfall at 11:00. Price nailed his top-rope Blockbuster for a nearfall. They traded superkicks. Oliver hit a running kick to the side of the head. Price hit a half-nelson suplex. He came off the top rope but Oliver caught him with a stunner. Oliver immediately hit the top-rope Clout Cutter for the pin. An excellent match, as these two know each other so well.
2. Maki Itoh defeated Nicole Matthews at 9:13. Indy veteran Matthews competed in the first-ever Mae Young Classic, and she has a significant height and overall size advantage; like Mike Bailey, she was banned from competing in the U.S. for five years but is now back. Matthews kicked her and Maki immediately did her fake crying. This crowd is hot. Itoh missed her Kokeshi falling headbutt. Nicole hit a stiff kick to the spine at 1:30, then a backbreaker over her knee. She tied Maki in the ropes, Sheamus-style, and hit some spin kicks to Itoh’s chest and was booed. Matthews yanked on Itoh’s pigtails and stayed in charge of the offense.
Itoh hit a DDT, then the Kokeshi falling headbutt for a nearfall at 4:30. She hit a running Facewash kick in the corner for a nearfall. Matthews fired back with a swinging neckbreaker for a nearfall at 6:00 and she tied up Maki on the mat, but Itoh reached the bottom rope. Itoh hit a headbutt and a DDT. Itoh climbed the ropes, but Matthews shoved the ref into the ropes to crotch Maki. Nicole immediately hit a Northern Lights Suplex with a bridge for a nearfall at 8:00. Itoh hit a DDT onto the ring apron, and they both tumbled to the floor. Itoh hit a tornado DDT off the ring apron to the floor. Back in the ring, Itoh hit a top-rope DDT for the pin. Good match, and there were no weapons (pizza cutters!) or crazy, unnecessary blows to the head.
* A video package showed highlights of Violence is Forever defeating Los Macizos in a death match to win the GCW Tag Titles at Nov. 4.
3. Sawyer Wreck vs. Jimmy Lloyd in an intergender match ended in a draw at 1:04. She has the height advantage but they probably are fairly similar in weight. They immediately traded forearm strikes. However, Violence is Forever hit the ring and beat them both up, and the match is over. The Bollywood Boyz hit the ring, and our next match is apparently getting underway! We started with ViF vs. the Bollywood Boyz…
4. “Violence is Forever” Kevin Ku and Dominic Garrini defeated “The Bollywood Boyz” Harv and Gurv Sihra and “Second Gear Crew” Mance Warner and 1 Called Manders and Sawyer Wreck and Jimmy Lloyd in a four-way tag to retain the GCW Tag Team Titles at 12:03. We started with just the two teams and they started brawling. Prazak noted the BB are the Defy Tag Team champs but those titles aren’t on the line here. ViF immediately got doors from under the ring. However, at 1:00 we have the music of the Second Gear Crew! Manders and Mance Warner got in the ring and turned this into a four-way tag match! BB shoved fruit into Mance’s mouth and he collapsed. Everyone started brawling on the floor and hitting each other on the back with chair shots.
In the ring, Manders and Ku traded chops at 6:30. Lloyd nailed a HARD, unprotected chairshot over Manders’ head. Just so completely unnecessary. Manders hit a Tombstone Piledriver onto Mance onto an open chair. Sawyer tossed a chair at Garrini, and she hit a back suplex on him onto an open chair for a nearfall at 8:30. Manders hit a spear on Sawyer, sending her through a door in the corner. ViF and the BB were suddenly alone in the ring and they brawled. The BB applied stereo Sharpshooters at 10:30 and the crowd taunted VIF to tap out, but ViF powered out. ViF hit the Chasing the Dragon kick-and-brainbuster combo, but Sawyer immediately made the save. ViF slammed door shards on Sawyer’s head and pinned her. Okay brawl; no one bled, but we just don’t need those unprotected chairshots to the head.
* A video package aired from a crazy high-flying lucha match from Oct. 14 in Los Angeles.
5. “Los Desperados” Gringo Loco and Arez and Latigo defeated Aramis and Laredo Kid and Rey Horus at 19:07. This will be fast-paced. Aramis is in green-and-black tonight and he opened against long-time opponent Arez with the usual quick lucha reversals and a standoff. Aramis hit a satellite head-scissors takedown that popped the crowd. Loco entered at 2:00 and he hit a fallaway slam on Aramis. Horus, dressed mostly in red tonight, entered and battled Loco. Latigo entered; Laredo entered at 4:30 and fought Latigo, hitting a nice headscissors takedown. The heels began working over Rey Horus. The heels pushed Aramis against the ropes and took turns chopping him at 7:30.
Loco hit a powerbomb on Aramis and the crowd chanted “lucha libre!” Horus hit an impressive tornado DDT on Loco. Aramis hit a dive to the floor and turned it into a huracanrana, so Laredo did the same thing. In the ring, Horus hit a mid-ring Spanish Fly on Arez at 10:30 for a nearfall. Horus hit a springboard corkscrew press to the floor onto everyone. Laredo Kid was suddenly in the balcony and he hit a Swanton Bomb to the floor on the other five at 11:30, earning a massive (and well deserved!) “holy shit!” chant. In the ring, Horus hit a frogsplash. Laredo hit a 450 Splash for a nearfall. Arez and Horus were suddenly alone in the ring and they traded forearm strikes.
Horus dropped him for a chest-first slam. Arez dove through the ropes to the floor. Laredo Kid hit a bottom-rope moonsault then a second-rope moonsault on Loco at 15:00. Latigo hit a Lungblower move. Aramis hit a mid-ring Spanish Fly on Latigo. He put Latigo on his shoulders, spun him several times and turned it into a powerbomb for a nearfall. Arez hit a sit-out powerbomb on Aramis for a nearfall. Laredo had a strap and he whipped Arez in the chest with it! Ouch! Laredo hit a top-rope belly-to-belly suplex for a nearfall on Arez. Loco hit a top-rope slam on Aramis for a nearfall at 18:30. Loco hit a twisting Canadian Destroyer to pin Aramis. Fantastic. Stellar. They got pelted with crumbled-up bills.
* They all shook hands, but then Los Desperados all kicked the babyfaces in their stomachs! They set up a door bridge in the ring, and Gringo Loco powerbombed Laredo Kid through the door bridge!
6. Santana Jackson defeated Matt Cardona (w/Steph De Lander) at 13:36. Cardona just returned from the DDT super show in Japan where he battled Mao. SDL got on the mic and berated the crowd. Cardona took the mic and complained about how long the lucha match was. “Don’t they know we got to get out of Seattle, because Seattle f—ing sucks?” Cardona said Santana is funny, “but funny don’t make money.” Both SDL and Cardona berated Jimmy Lloyd, with Cardona calling him a “backyard wrestler.” (Clearly setting up Lloyd interfering in this later, causing Santana to win?) I am repulsed at the way the fans laugh and cheer for a Michael Jackson tribute act. Just gross and short-sighted. I wish Cardona had cut a heel promo making my points about how wrong-headed it is for fans to cheer for Santana.
Lots of stalling, lots of comedy. Cardona got on the mic and said they should “shake hands and dance.” SDL shook the ropes to crotch Santana and she choked him (in my eyes, turning babyface!) Santana put on the wolf mask and speared Cardona. SDL accidentally speared Cardona. SDL and Cardona hit low blows on Santana. As expected, Jimmy Lloyd jumped in the ring and hit a Fameasser flying leg drop on Cardona. Santana hit the Moonwalk DDT for the pin.
7. Dark Sheik and “Bussy” Effy and Allie Katch defeated “The Sovereign” Judas Icarus, Travis Williams, and Evan Rivers at 17:29. Icarus is the shorter Mike Bailey clone and Williams is a Zack Sabre clone; those two recently had an AEW TV match. Rivers has curly hair and tattoos and always makes me think of Zicky Dice. Icarus and Effy opened; I state this all the time, but Effy is much taller and thicker than the smaller Judas. Williams tied up Allie in a knot, showing those afore-mentioned Sabre-style holds. Rivers tagged in for the first time at 5:00; Dark Sheik also tagged in. Rivers bodyslammed Sheik. Effy and Katch hit their buttbumps on Rivers, and Effy hit the Whoopee Cushion butt drop at 7:30.
Effy teased biting Icarus’ exposed toes but Judas fought free. The heels began working Effy over in their corner. Katch finally made the hot tag at 11:00 and she hit her butt splashes and rolling cannonballs on Rivers and Williams in opposite corners. Sheik hit a double Sliced Bread. Rivers tossed Sheik to the floor. Rivers hit a moonsault on Allie for a nearfall at 13:00. The heels hit dives to the floor. In the ring, Williams hit a German Suplex on Effy for a nearfall at 15:00. Effy bit Judas’ toes; he had tried so many times in the match, and the crowd popped for this. Nick Gage suddenly hit the ring and hit a DDT. Gage hit a running kick on a chair over Icarus’ face in the corner. Effy hit his Doomsday Leg Drop, and Sheik hit the top-rope flying legdrop on Icarus for the pin.
* Gage got on the mic and said he told the fans he promised to come back to Seattle, and he brought GCW with them. Gage will compete in a Defy show here on Saturday. He thanked the fans for having them in this building now.
* Veda Scott had to leave the commentary booth here; Prazak wished her “safe travels.” We went to a video package of Blake Christian’s heel run as GCW champion. I love Blake, but he is smaller in size, so I think a match against, say, Judas Icarus, would be a lot better than what is planned here.
8. Blake Christian defeated Schaff to retain the GCW World Title at 15:19. Schaff has at least one AEW TV match. He is a big man, comparable to Jake Something or a slightly-smaller Braun Strowman, so he towers over Blake. Emil Jay joined Prazak on commentary. Schaff easily shoved Blake to the match and the crowd was fully behind him. Schaff hip-tossed him across the ring, and they brawled to the floor. Prazak thanked Defy Wrestling for making this weekend happen. Schaff dove onto Blake, sending them both into chairs. Back in the ring, Schaff hit a rolling cannonball at 3:30, then a one-armed vertical suplex. Blake hit a baseball slide dropkcik through the ropes.
Blake ran on the floor, dove through the ring and hit a flying headbutt on Schaff. Prazak noted it’s a move El Generico used to do. In the ring, Blake tried working over the arm. He hit a dropkick at 8:00 and a flipping senton, then a top-rope doublestomp to the chest. Schaff jumped to his feet and hit a clothesline to Blake’s back. Schaff hit some hard chops. Blake nailed his handspring-back-spin kick, then a flip dive to the floor at 10:30. In the ring, Blake hit his springboard 450 Splash for a nearfall, and the fans chanted, “Defy!” They traded forearm shots, but Schaff dropped Blake with a hard blow.
Blake hit a Pele Kick, then a Death Valley Driver, then a 619 at 12:30. He hit a Benoit-style top-rope flying headbutt. Schaff hit a stunner out of nowhere for a nearfall. “That might have been the closest count of the match,” Emil said. Blake swung wildly with the belt but missed. Schaff hit a hard clothesline and a neckbreaker for a nearfall, but Blake got a foot on the bottom rope to stop the count at 14:30. Blake hit the title belt over Schaff’s head with the ref out of position. Blake immediately hit a springboard forearm strike to the back of the head, then his Rollins-style Stomp to the head for the pin. A really good match.
9. Joey Janela defeated Mike Bailey at 33:48. Bailey defeated Bryan Keith a night earlier in Los Angeles. A feeling-out process to open. Bailey dove through the ropes at 2:00, and he kicked Joey as they brawled on the floor. Joey accidentally chopped the ring post, and Bailey hit his Speedball kicks to the ribs and thighs. Joey dove through the ropes onto Bailey at 3:30, so Bailey hit a flip dive to the floor on Joey. In the ring, Joey hit a Dragon Suplex. On the floor, Joey hit another Dragon Suplex! That looked dangerous. Joey peeled up the thin mat at ringside and he hit a DDT onto the hardwood floor at 6:00. They got back in the ring, with Janela completely in charge and he focused on the neck.
Janela nailed a Death Valley Driver for a nearfall at 9:30. Bailey hit a second-rope missile dropkick, a series of kicks, and his running Shooting Star Press for a nearfall. Bailey hit a Dragonscrew legwhip on the left leg and began targeting the limb. He hit another Dragonscrew as Janela’s leg was hanging outside the ring. Bailey dropped Janela leg-first through a door, then he applied the Trailer Hitch leglock at 13:00, but Joey reached the ropes. Bailey set up for the Tornado Kick but Janela caught him with a kick. Bailey hit a series of kicks. Janela hit a brainbuster at 16:30. Bailey hit his mid-ring Spanish Fly; he went for a moonsault kneedrop but Janela got his knees up, so their knees collided.
They traded open-hand slaps. Janela hit a rolling elbow at 18:30. He avoided a moonsault double kneedrop. They did the suplex spot where they both tumbled over the top rope and to the floor, with the fans chanting “this is awesome!” Janela hit a standing powerbomb with a folding press for a nearfall at 21:00. Bailey hit his springboard moonsault to the floor, with them crashing itno the chairs. In the ring,, Janela again blocked the Tornado Kick. Bailey set up for the Flamingo Driver, but Janela escaped and hit a Canadian Destroyer and a superkick for a nearfall. Joey hit a piledriver for a nearfall at 23:00. Joey has a bit of blood coming from his mouth. Fans chanted, “Both these guys!”
Bailey hit a basement dropkick to the knee and another Dragonscrew Legwhip. He went under the ring and got a chair. Janela suplexed Bailey into the corner at 26:30. Janela went for a doublestomp but Bailey moved, and Joey crashed onto an open chair! Bailey finally nailed the Tornado Kick, then the Ultima Weapon for a believable nearfall. (That should have been it.) Bailey went back under the ring and got a huge wood board, which he set up between the ring apron and a chair on the floor. Bailey missed a moonsault kneedrop! Joey nailed a Death Valley Driver off the ring apron, with them both crashing through the door bridge to the floor at 30:00.
In the ring, Joey slammed Bailey through an open chair, and the fans chanted “Fight forever!” Joey went to the top rope, but Bailey hopped to his feet and wrapped the leg around the top rope. They fought on the top rope. Janela hit a doublestomp to the chest for a nearfall. Joey hit a superkick. Janela hit a German Suplex and a clothesline. Janela nailed a Burning Hammer for the pin. An excellent match that perhaps went a bit too long.
Final Thoughts: Yes, it’s my preferred style, but you aren’t going to top that lucha match here for best match. I’ll go with the fast-paced, show-opener Oliver-Price for second place, with the main event third. A strong Schaff-Blake match earns honorable mention.
GCW certainly used some of the very best of the Defy roster here (it would have been nice to have a Vert Vixen appearance, though). Between the Bollywood Boyz, Schaff, Sovereign, and Nicole Matthews, the best were showcased. There was a lot to like here. With that lengthy main event, this clocked in at 3:20 with no intermission.