Feels Like The First Time: McNEILL previews FloSlam’s EVOLVE 78 Pay-Per-View! (w/ Wrestling History Lesson)

Drew McIntyre (art credit Grant Gould © PWTorch)

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By Pat McNeill, PWTorch Columnist

Wake the pets and call the neighbors. It’s time for our FloSlam pay-per-view preview column!

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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 my Evolve shows on FloSlam. Some of our departing contestants will receive Ceilings by Celotex. Choose from a wide variety of patterns, colors and textures. All so beautiful and easy to install, they’ll enhance any room. 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.

Last month, we previewed a major Evolve show, and the ropes broke early in the show And then broke again. And some more. I know Evolve is using a different ring this evening, but if there’s another mechanical mishap tonight in Maryland, I will certainly take the hint and start doing Style Battle previews instead.

WWN fans are focused on WrestleMania weekend in Orlando, where Michael Elgin, Donovan Dijak and Ricochet will be headlining for the purple brand. But if you’ve going to serve dinner, you first have to set the table. That’s what the weekend’s matches are all about.

Before we get to our picks, let’s do today’s Wrestling History Lesson. On March 2nd, 1997, World Championship Wrestling presented an episode of “WCW Pro” on TBS, pretaped in Orlando, Florida. The main event saw a battle of legends as Glacier faced Ultimo Dragon. Good times. Chris Cruise, Larry Zbyszko and the late Dusty Rhodes had the call.

Ten years ago, Total Nonstop Action wrestling was kicking butt and taking names. On August 11, 2006, TNA held a UWF live event in Columbia, South Carolina. That show featured a triple threat bout with the New Age Outlaws vs. The Naturals vs. Diamonds in The Rough. Jeff Harris and Some Guy had the call.

As your free gift for viewing this column, let’s take you back to August 12, 2016 and the “FIP Heatstorke 2016” event in Altamonte Springs, Florida. Your main event was AR Fox vs. Fred Yehi for the FIP Heavyweight Title. No, really. Trevin Adams & Rob Naylor had the call.

Enough of that. Now on with the projections!

Darby Allin vs. Austin Theory: Allin is no longer The Guy Who Takes The Stupid Bumps. He’s actually on a WWNLive winning streak. Projection? Theory misses from the top rope. The Dirtbag covers him for another victory.

Chris Dickinson & Jaka vs. The Gatekeepers: Dickinson & Jaka haven’t always been on the same page, but that’s not an issue for the Gatekeepers Projection? Jaka nails Rexx Tervistumbler with the Jaws of the Jaguar, and the Catch Pointers win again.

Jason Kincaid vs. Ethan Page: All Ego’s wins over Dick Togo and Zack Sabre Junior have established him as a Top Guy in these parts, while last month’s shows proved Kincaid can wrestle at a high level. Projection? Page gets the duke with the Headshot Cutter.

Matt Riddle vs. Anthony Henry: After thirteen glorious years, the Patron Saint of Georgia indy wrestling has fought his way to Evolve. Mr. Riddle is ready. Projection? Riddle wins with the Riddle Me This.

Tracy Williams vs. ACH: One half of the tag team champions against the high flyer from Texas. Good times. Projection? Williams wins with the Picante Piledriver.

Drew Galloway vs. Jeff Cobb: Evolve fans are very excited about this collision between TNA and Lucha Underground. You think YOU’RE excited? Feel these nipples. Projection? Thee Drew Galloway takes it with a Celtic Cross.

Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Keith Lee: Zack Sabre is headed to New Japan, which means FloSlam fans won’t see him as often, but they will see him. Lee is being built for an eventual clash with Donovan Dijak. (At least, that’s what I’d do.) Projection? A long match ends with Lee tapping out to The Inexorable March Of Progress.

Timothy Thatcher vs. Fred Yehi – Evolve Heavyweight Match: This is what Premier League fans would call a “friendly”, because both men are in the same stable. Not to mention that this is the Evolve champion vs. the FIP champion in what is presumably, a teaser for the WWNLive title bout. Projection? Yehi comes close, but can’t break the Thatcher Stretch. The champ stands tall going into Saturday.

Aftermath: We go to Evolve 79 tomorrow evening in Queens, where Ethan Page beats Darby Allin, Drew Galloway solves Matt Riddle, and Mr. Thatcher retains the title against Zack Sabre Junior on the way to More Than Mania.

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Pat McNeill of Greenville, SC. has been a Torch columnist since February 2001. He’d take Cleveland to beat Chicago in tomorrow night’s big NBA game. You know, if gambling were legal.

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