By Chris Vetter, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@chrisvetter73)
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Defy Wrestling “Genesis”
Replay available via Wremix.tv
October 27, 2023 from Seattle, Washington at Washington Hall
This show was posted, for free on Thursday. Rich Bocchini provided solo commentary. Lighting is okay and attendance here is always in the 500-600 range; they draw really well here.
* Guillermo Rosas has a mystery partner in the opening match. The crowd popped for the appearance of Jeff Cobb, chanting “Welcome back!” (This show in Seattle was held a day before a NJPW show in Las Vegas, so Cobb and Sanada were ‘in the area’ to take matches on this show.)
1. Guillermo Rosas and Jeff Cobb defeated “Midnight Heat” Ricky Gibson and Eddie Pearl at 11:43. The MH have the great old-school FTR heel vibe to them. The short, rotund Rosas opened against the bald Gibson. Gibson bailed to the floor but Cobb tossed him right back in at 2:00. Cobb and Rosas hit a team shoulder tackle. Cobb hit a standing moonsault for a nearfall. Pearl made a blind tag at 5:00 and applied a sleeper on Rosas. The MH began working over Rosas with basic heel moves. Rosas finally hit a German Suplex and made the hot tag to Cobb at 10:00.
Jeff hit a flying shoulder tackle on Gibson then two more on Pearl. Cobb hit a Spin Cycle swinging back suplex on Pearl. Cobb hit a double back suplex on both opponents, popping the crowd. Cobb hit a Tour of the Islands on Gibson, while Rosas hit a Brainbuster on Pearl for the pin. Fun match but Cobb was barely in it. Everything he did looked great, though.
* Outside in London, Gabe Kidd, Alex Coughlin and Clark Connors are hanging out. Kidd showed off the PNW title belt he has from the Pacific Northwest. Backstage, Schaff cut an intense, profanity-laced promo, demanding that Kidd bring his belt back to Washington and fight him for it.
2. Schaff defeated Gabe Kidd via DQ at 10:42; Kidd retained the Pacific Northwest Championship. They started brawling right in the entrance way, as Motley Crue’s “Kickstart My Heart” was still blaring, as they brawled on the floor. Kidd hit a back suplex onto the thin mat at ringside. Bocchini wondered if we had the bell to officially start the match. They brawled up the stairs and into the balcony. (I just watched Laredo Kid dive off this balcony in a live show from Friday.) They traded forearms while fighting against the railing. They came back down the stairs and continued brawling in the main room. Kidd shoved Schaff head-first into the ring post at 5:00; they got into the ring and we had the bell to officially begin!
Kidd hit a clothesline for a nearfall. Schaff put Kidd on his shoulders but the ref got bumped. Schaff hit a stunner but we had no ref. Schaff missed a frogsplash at 8:30, and Kidd immediately hit a Saito Suplex for a nearfall, then a brainbuster for a nearfall. They traded German Suplexes. Schaff nailed a spinebuster at 10:30. Kidd grabbed the referee and intentionally slapped him in the face! The match was immediately ruled a DQ. Again, official time is about 5:25, but I always start my stop watch at first contact or the bell, whichever is first. They kept brawling.
* Jeff Cobb cut a backstage promo, thanking the fans for the warm reception. Rosas walked up. Cobb said this man needed my help, so I gave it to him.
3. “The Bollywood Boyz” Harv Sihra and Gurv Sihra defeated “Illa Tribe” Coco Flash and Guerilla Suge to retain the Defy Tag Team Titles at 13:03. The BB handed out sweet treats to fans. I don’t know the Tribe at all and Bocchini said it is their Washington Hall debut. Harv opened as Bocchini noted he just became a dad. Coco, who has long dreadlocks, a big chest tattoo, and a thin frame, opened for his team. Gurv hit a clothesline. Suge (think a heavier Wheeler Yuta) entered at 2:00. Coco has the same arm-and-chest tattoo as The Rock. The BB rammed Coco head-first into Suge’s stomach or groin as Suge was trapped in the corner at 5:00.
Suge hit a setnton, and he slammed Coco onto Gurv Sihra for a nearfall, and the Illa Tribe worked Gurv over. Harv got the hot tag at 8:00 and he hit some clotheslines and a running bulldog. He nailed a top-rope superplex on Suge. This crowd was hot. Gurv and Suge traded chops. Coco hit an impressive flip dive to the floor. The Tribe hit running dropkicks to the heads of the BB at 11:00. In the ring, Coco did a springboard kneestrike move (it didn’t quite ‘hit’ but the crowd was quite forgiving.) Gurv applied a Sharpshooter on Coco, but Suge broke it up. The BB hit a stereo superkick on Suge. They nailed the Demoliton-style top-rope team elbow drop on Coco for the pin. That was fun. Illa Tribe made a good debut; I like a ‘big man/little man’ team.
* Seconds after the bell, Curry Man danced his way to the ring. Again, this is clearly NOT Christopher Daniels under the yellow mask. The crowd chanted “He’s so spicy!” He asked the Bollywood Boys for a title match at the November crossover show with GCW (this event actually took place on Saturday). Curry Man’s partner will be Effy! Harv accepted the match.
4. Mike Bailey defeated Judas Icarus (w/Evan Rivers) at 23:06. This is Bailey’s Defy Wrestling debut. I always compare Icarus to Bailey; he’s shorter but with the same dark hair and they both wrestle barefoot. I’ve seen rave comments about this match from those who saw it live so looking forward to this. The crowd chanted “no shoes!” as these two stood nose-to-nose at the bell. An intense lockup and mat reversals. “This one has the potential to be lightning quick” Bocchini said. As they traded mat reversals, Icarus teased biting Bailey’s toe. Funny. Bailey hit his Speedball kicks to the ribs and thighs at 4:00. Bailey hit a Mafia Kick to send Icarus to the floor, then he hit the Triangle Moonsault to the floor.
Rivers stood toe-to-toe with Bailey on the floor and he grabbed Bailey’s foot as Mike got back into the ring. It alllowed Icarus to take charge in the ring. He hit some forearm strikes to the back of Bailey’s neck at 6:30 and he was loudly booed. He applied an anklelock and kept Bailey grounded. Bailey hit a series of kicks and his running Shooting Star Press for a nearfall at 10:00. Bailey got a nearfall but Rivers put Judas’ foot on the rope to break the count. Icarus hit a twisting brainbuster for a nearfall. The ref saw Rivers cheat and he ejected Evan (which of course got a huge pop.) Bailey again hit his Speedball kicks. Icarus hit some chops and strikes and suddenly they were both down at 13:00 and the crowd was HOT for this action, chanting “Defy!”
They got up and traded chops and kicks. Icarus leapt off the apron and hit a flying forearm to the floor. Bailey hit his top-rope moonsault to the floor, and they landed deep in the crowd at 16:30, with the fans chanting “Holy shit” then switching to “this is awesome!” They traded blows on the ring apron. Icarus grabbed Bailey’s foot and snapped his toes! So, Bailey did the same thing, then he hit a moonsault double kneedrop at 19:00. Bailey missed the Ultima Weapon and they traded rollups. Bailey missed a moonsault kneedrop. Judas hit a Russia Legsweep into the buckles, then a second-rope twisting suplex for a nearfall. The crowd now chanted “Fight forever!”
Bocchini said this could be among the top 10 matches in Defy Wresting history, as Bailey hit a mid-ring Spanish Fly, then he nailed the moonsault double kneedrop. He missed the Tornado Kick, and Icarus immediately hit a reverse suplex, dropping Bailey stomach-first. Icarus nailed a rebound lariat for a nearfall at 22:30. Bailey nailed the Tornado Kick in the corner, then he nailed the Ultima Weapon summersault kneedrop for the pin. Fantastic. Just absolutely fantastic. Bocchini immediately called it a “Classic.”
5. Viva Van defeated Nicole Matthews to retain the PCW Ultra Women’s Title at 14:47. Matthews grabbed Van’s title and held it above her head, drawing boos. She has a significant height and overall size advantage. Viva hit some basement dropkicks. They brawled on the floor. In the ring, Viva hit a spinning heel kick at 2:30. Matthews hit a backbreaker over her knee. She tied up Viva on the mat and remained in charge of the offense for several minutes. Viva hit a spinning back fist at 8:00, then a Lungblower to the back out of the corner. Viva hit a top-rope missile dropkick.
Matthews nailed a swinging neckbreaker at 10:00. Viva applied a Muta Lock and cranked on Nicole’s head. Nicole nailed a brainbuster for a nearfall at 11:30. Viva fired back with an Eat D’Feat and a Saito Suplex for a nearfall. They fought in the corner and Nicole hit some Moxley-style elbow strikes to the side of the head. Viva put Nicole on her shoulders, fell backward in the Electric Chair, and scored the pin! Good match.
6. Travis Williams (w/Evan Rivers) defeated Artemis Spencer at 19:29. I always compare Artemis to Curtis Axel in looks. Williams is the Zack Sabre Jr. clone for in-ring style, but is now completely bald. Standing switches to open and mat reverals; not much to describe. WIlliams bailed to the floor at 2:30 to regroup with Rivers. Spencer punched Rivers, who was on the ring apron, but it allowed Williams to chop-block the knee at 5:00 and take charge. Rivers cranked on Spencer’s leg on the floor. In the ring, Williams kept Spencer grounded and worked the left leg.
Williams applied a Figure Four at 8:00 and he grabbed Rivers’ hands for leverage. Spencer hit a 619 onto both heels, then a clothesline on Williams at 11:00. Spencer nailed a Lungblower to the back for a nearfall. Spencer hit a moonsault to the floor on Rivers at 12:30. Williams and Spencer did the spot where they suplex each other over the top rope to the floor, and the crowd chanted “Defy!” Rivers was FINALLY thrown out; I was wondering why this didn’t happen several minutes earlier.
In the ring, Spencer dropped Williams face-first on the top turnbuckle. Williams applied a Figure Four Leglock, and they rolled to the floor at 17:00 with the hold still locked in. Back in the ring, Artemis hit a modified piledriver. He went to the top rope, but Icarus came out of nowhere and shoved him off the top rope. Williams hit a slingshot DDT, then a handspring-back-clothesline, then the Jay Driller for the pin. A good mat-based match and Spencer has an ‘out’ for losing. The heels kept beating up Spencer, until Bailey hit the ring for the save.
* Spencer got on the mic and told the three heels he will teach them a lesson on Nov. 17. He said Bailey would team with him, and his third man is Nick Gage! The crowd loved this announcement. (Again, that show took place on Saturday; I haven’t read results but that show also will be posted soon on wremix.tv).
* Backstage, Nicole Matthews was upset about losing. She sounded like she was having a mental breakdown as she complained that Viva Van cheated. “I don’t know why Defy is so against me? I have the coolest comeback story of all time, and … nothing?!” I really liked her promo, trying to justify her actions while contending she’s the real victim here.
7. IWGP Heavyweight Champion Sanada defeated Cody Chhun in a non-title match at 21:08. Bocchini said Sanada’s IWGP Title is NOT on the line. Chhun has had a few AEW matches now, and I always compare him to NXT’s Boa in size and stature. A hero’s welcome for Sanada, who did wear his title. This crowd was hot as we got under way. A feeling-out process in a knucklelock early on. Cody hit a deep armdrag at 6:00 and focused on the left arm. They did the spot where each man held the other’s leg and they couldn’t agree on putting it down. Sanada went for the Paradise Lock at 9:30 but Cody fought free. Moments later, Sanada applied the Paradise Lock. (The crowd popped for this but I have always thought it was a dumb move.)
Sanada hit a Russian Legsweep for a nearfall at 12:30. Cody hit a dropkick and did a spinaroonie. He hit a back suplex for a nearfall at 17:00. Sanada placed Cody’s feet on the top rope and hit a swinging neckbreaker. He hit a running knee and he set up for Deadfall but Cody escaped. Sanada set up for Skull End dragon sleeper, but Cody escaped and got a nearfall. Sanada applied Skull End but Cody rolled through and got a nearfall. Sanada hit an enzuigiri, then a Shining Wizard, then the Deadfall (Jay White’s Blade Runner swinging faceplant) for the pin. Good match that built nicely with a fantastic final 5-7 minutes.
* The crowd chanted “please come back.” Sanada got on the mic and said he “loves theater” I presume referring to the building. He concluded by saying “see you next time.”
Final Thoughts: As of the time I’m writing this on Nov. 20, Mike Bailey has competed in 145 matches this year, which is just insane, when you think about the high quality of each of his matches. In comparison, Will Ospreay has competed in 69 matches this year, which is still a LOT but it’s less than half of Bailey’s total! At age 33, Bailey has several more good year in him and I’m just in awe of him today. Make no mistake, Judas Icarus is the real deal but he’s going to get overlooked because of his height. I was so disappointed for him when he and Travis Williams were completely squashed recently in an AEW TV match.
I’ll give Sanada-Chhun second-best, ahead of Van-Matthews, with Spencer-Williams earning honorable mention. Again, this show is available for free on wremix.tv and, if nothing else, check out Bailey-Icarus.