SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Wake the pets and call the neighbors. It’s time for our WWNLive internet pay-per-view preview column!
DISCLAIMER: Projections are made by myself and for myself with absolutely no assistance from Gabe Sapolsky or Sal “Rhymes With Amway” Hamaoui. Projections are not predictions, because this is the column where everything’s made up, and the points don’t count. No one knows the contents of these projections, but I, in my divine and mystical way, will ascertain the finishes to these matches despite not being caught up on EVOLVE shows. Some of our departing contestants will receive a supply of Anbesol Cold Sore Therapy. The only one with Vitamin E and aloe. Anbesol Cold Sore Therapy: Put it on, the pain is gone. Many of our contestants are chosen from our studio audience. Enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope and mail to “Tickets, CBS Television City, 7800 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90036.” Remember, this is only an exhibition. This is not a competition. Please, please, no wagering. This lineup is based on the best available information as of this writing.
The business arrangement between World Wrestling Entertainment and Evolve has changed the dynamic of WrestleMania weekend. Not only do we have WWE scouts at Eddie Dean’s Ranch this weekend, but we also know that some of the participants on tonight’s WWN Supershow are scheduled to appear on WWE shows. Johnny Gargano is on NXT, Zack Sabre Junior will be in the Global Cruiserweight tournament, and Kota Ibushi never would have been pointed out on camera if WWE didn’t have plans for him. It’s a challenge for any booker, but Gabe Sapolsky doesn’t back away from challenges.
Before we get to our picks, let’s do today’s Wrestling History Lesson. Twenty years ago, on April 1st, 1996, World Championship Wrestling held a live episode of WCW Monday Nitro from Cleveland, Ohio. The opening bout saw Sting taking on future Hall of Famer “The Giant” Paul Wight. Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan & Steve McMichael had the call.
And, as your free gift for viewing this column, let’s take you back to November 7, 2015 for EVOLVE 52, from Orlando, Florida. This match saw the undefeated Matt Riddle battle Tracy Williams of Catch Point. Lenny Leonard had the call.
Enough of that. Now on with the projections!
Drew Gulak vs. Fred Yehi: Gulak & Tracy Williams just won the Evolve Tag Team Titles this afternoon. Yehi is a rising star who needs a few victories. Projection? Yehi stuns Gulak by pinning the champ after a dragon suplex. There will be consequences.
Matt Riddle vs. Tracy Williams: WWE sees Deep Waters as a potential star for the promotion, and Evolve has been booking him as a star. Projection? Riddle picks up another win with the cross armbreaker.
Ethan Page vs. Anthony Nese: So, this one in All Ego against…Mostly Ego. Projection? Page gets the duke with the Headshot Cutter, and the PAB’s awful weekend continues.
Caleb Konley vs. Maxwell Chicago vs. Gary Jay vs. Jason Cade (FIP Heavyweight Title):It’s Full Impact Pro. I’d obviously be guessing here. Projection? Konley forces Gary Jay to tap out to the Boston Crab.
Taylor Made vs. Mystery Opponent: (Shine Title) First off, I’mguessing Su Yung as the mystery woman. And I’m guessing Taylor wins with the Ace Crusher.
Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Chris Hero: I love the skills of Zack Sabre Junior, but this is starting to feel like his indy farewell tour this weekend. Projection? Sabre catches Hero with the Europen Clutch. Hero has another post-match freakout, and we suddenly have our main event for Evolve 60 lined up.
Timothy Thatcher vs. Sami Callihan (EVOLVE Title): Seriously, how happy is Gabe Sapolsky to have Sami Callihan back? Heck, I’m happy to have Sami back where I can see his matches. Projection? Callihan capitalizes on Thatcher’s injury and forces Timothy to tap to the Stretch Muffler. A new champion is crowned.
Kota Ibushi, Johnny Gargano & TJ Perkins vs. Will Ospreay, Tommy End & Marty Scurll: It’s not exactly Dragon Gate, but we’ll take it. A lot of talent here. Projection? TJ Perkins pins Marty Scurll after the corkscrew Tornado DDT to cap off this movefest. Think of it as a trailer for the Global Cruiserweight Series.
Aftermath: Sabre vs. Hero at Evolve 60. TJ Perkins vs. Lio Rush at Evolve 61. And we’re done.
Pat McNeill of Richmond, Va. has been a Torch columnist since February 2001. He’d like to give a shoutout to all his people at WrestleCon tonight. You know who you are.