7/27 MLW FUSION TV REPORT: Special “Battle Riot” episode with Konnan, Teddy Hart, Davey Boy Jr, Swoggle, Fenix, ACH, Lawlor, Hennigan, Sami, Strickland, Pentagon Jr., Hager,

By Kris Karcher, PWTorch contributor



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MLW TV REPORT
JULY 27, 2018
QUEENS, N.Y.
AIRED ON BE-IN SPORTS NETWORK
REPORT BY KRIS KARCHER, PWTORCH CORRESPONDENT

Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Matt Striker 

-MLW intro played.

– A promo aired where they explained the rules of the Battle Riot. A new wrestler enters every 60 seconds. Eliminations are by pinfall, submission, or by throwing your opponent over the top rope. There are no disqualifications. Winner gets a world title shot anytime anywhere. They highlighted a few wrestlers that would be participating like Tom Lawler and Pentagon Jr.

– A pretty cool Battle Riot special opening played where wrestlers and the rules of the match were projected onto various brick walls.

-Tony Schiavone introduced the show and his new broadcast partner Matt Striker. They previewed Middleweight Championship match later between Joey Ryan and Maxwell Jacob Friedman

(1) Myron Reed vs. Kotto Brazil

After Reed entered the ring they showed a brief backstage promo where Reed said he plans on heating up MLW and that Kotto was up first. Some athletic exchanges to start the match as both wrestlers showed off their athleticism reversing each other and neither gaining an advantage. Reed hits a nice springboard move and took over on offense. The commentary with Striker and Schiavone was really good here. They have a very natural chemistry and I hope to hear more of Striker in MLW. Kotto hit a nice lariat into the corner and then jumped from the apron into the ring and hit Reed with a kick in the corner. The two collided in the center of the ring each going for a cross body but instead, taking each other out. Nice move. Kotto hit a nice springboard dropkick as Reed was dropped over the middle rope. Kotto hit two suicide dives to the outside but as he went for the third, Reed slid into the ring and hit Kotto with a dropkick. Reed then jumped over the top rope and hit a flying hip attack on Kotto. The fans there cheering for both wrestlers. Reed hit a springboard forearm and got a two count. Kotto hit a bridging German suplex for a two count. Brazil jumped from the top rope but Reed got his foot up. Brazil put on a submission hold but Reed made it to the rope causing a break. Reed hit a cutter and got a very believable near fall. Reed went for a 450 splash but Brazil got his knees up. Reed reversed a suplex into a stunner. Kotto hit a flipping neck breaker and got the win.

WINNER: Kotto Brazil

(Karcher’s Comments: Really good match. I like Brazil’s in-ring work and Reed had a good showing. I think MLW can really put on a great program if they focus heavily on smaller wrestlers with great athletic skill. Something more akin to 205 Live might work well in the MLW setting. These two are a great start to the new Middleweight division.) 

– Maxwell Jacob Friedman was interviewed backstage. He was asked for his thoughts on his match later with Joey Ryan. MJF first acted like he hadn’t been paying attention to the question. He said NYC is the greatest place in the world because he was born there. He said he would eventually after 3 or 4 minutes become the new Middleweight Champion. He said he is better then Joey Ryan and then he asked the reporter if her Jewelry was fake.

– Casey Lennox was backstage with Konnan. She asked him what made him come out of retirement. Konnan said there was no better place then MLW and the battle riot to return to and that his is a luchador and wrestling is in his blood. He said he will be on point like a decimal.

– A video package aired promoting the premiere of L.A Park coming soon to MLW.

– Joey Ryan was backstage being interviewed. He was asked about his upcoming match with MJF. He said it was tough to drop 5 pounds to make weight. He said he had to cut out lollipops out of his diet and he can no longer oil himself up with a pound of baby oil. He said he was rich just like MJF except he earned his money in a professional wrestling ring. He said he doesn’t roll over for every new kid who comes to town. He said he has rock star charisma, movie star good looks, and he is single-handedly bringing sleepy back to professional wrestling and he said he will be the first MLW Middleweight champion.

– Casey Lennox was backstage with Team Filthy. They were picking their spots for the battle riot out of one of those rolling shuffler cylinders you see used in bingo. Lennox asked Lawler about his loss to Jimmy Havoc. Lawler said he didn’t know what she was referring to. He said he only lost because he was concerned for Havoc’s health and was distracted. He then picked his number and Gotch said it was a good number.

(2) Maxwell Jacob Friedman vs. Joey Ryan (MLW Middleweight Championship)

Someone in the crowd was chanting EC2 at MJF. They showed the tale of the tape for the two men. I like the look of the Middleweight Championship more than the heavyweight title which is obnoxiously large. Ryan gave his lollipop to a fan sitting front row who put it right into his mouth. Ryan took out a bottle of baby oil and poured some down his trunks. After the first tie up the fans were chanting “Touch his D!@#”. and “F@#$ Cornett”. The crowd was wild for this match. MJF said he will touch it if Ryan shakes his hand. Ryan refused. MJF hit an armbar DDT. MJF started to work Ryan’s left arm. MJF showed some great athleticism in countering any of Ryan’s attempters to come back. The two collided head to head and Ryan fell to the mat while MJF was woozy. As MJF started to sway Ryan opened up his legs and after another 5 or 6 seconds of MJF swaying, he eventually fell right into Ryan’s crotch. That somehow hurt MJF more then Ryan and Ryan fired up and hit a superkick for a two count. Ryan pulled a lollipop out of his trunks and stuck it in MJF’s mouth. MJF used the ref as a shield and when Ryan moved the ref out of the way MJF poked Ryan in the eyes then hit him with a package shoulder breaker for the win. Friedman had the lollipop in his mouth the whole time.

WINNER: Maxwell Jacob Friedman.

(Karcher’s Comments: Fun match. I like Ryan’s whole gimmick and the two had great chemistry playing off each other. I feel like this would have been a great match to see in person as the crowd was really into it with all kinds of goofy chants for Ryan. It was a bit short on athleticism but when they did turn it on I was impressed, especially by MJF who I think had his best match ever here. I’m glad they starting this new Middleweight division as it looks like they have some really interesting match-ups they can go with.) 

– Casey Lennox came into the ring to interview MJF. Friedman said he told the crowd he wouldn’t touch it. Lennox congratulated him on his win and asked him how he feels. He said he feels better than all the scumbags in the crowd. He told Lennox to hold the mic higher and called her dollar store Oprah. He said in this business it’s usually old man talking young men dying but not anymore. He said when you are this damn good you get to cut the line. He said any of the veterans that want to give him advice and told him one day he would be a star that he has a newsflash for them he has always been a star and now he is a supernova. He said he wants the fans to get into their honda civic, drive to their mom’s basement, get another bag of flaming hot Cheetos and watch Fusion every week, taking notes on how he is better than them. He said it’s talent over tenure.

– Vanessa Craft was backstage. She said she was waiting for the final three to make their battle riot selections. Callihan and his death machines showed up and picked three pieces of paper and silently walked off without even looking at the paper.

– Schiavone said we would hear from former Heavyweight champion Shane Strickland coming up next.

– Casey Lennox was backstage and said she was waiting for another wrestler to pick his battle riot number (I thought Craft said that the last segment was the final three?) Swage came out from underneath the table and Lennox said she hopes he gets a lucky number. Swage laughed and said ohh the leprechaun thing. He said one of the ex-WWE writers must have given that to her. He drew his number and sighed then said the old bushwhacker status.

– A video package aired recapping all of the attacks and opponents Shane Strickland has had to face over the last month or so on Fusion. It went from Brody kings match to Callihan’s attack to the match where he lost the title to Low Ki.

– Vanessa Craft was backstage with Selina de La Renta and Low Ki. Selina said Black Friday Managment and Talentodorado have formed a partnership. Low Ki said he was there to bring the fight. He said it doesn’t matter what country you are from or what company you represent. He said this was his destiny and he has been a part of MLW since day one. He said he has had to have thick skin to survive. He said this new partnership is taking the world by storm and they will be running things around here. La Renta said that pretty much means Craft works for her and then chomped at her.

(3) Battle Riot

Entrant #1 – Pentagon Jr.

Entrant #2 – Rey Fenix

They went to shake hands and Pentagon hit Fenix with a spinning back kick. The two wrestlers chain wrestled for a bit then hit a superkick on each other and both went down.

Entrant #3 – Brody King

Fenix and Pentagon started working together attacking King and hit a nice rolling dropkick double move.

Entrant #4 – Kenny Doane

The crowd was chanting spirit squad. Downplayed to the crowd but King took him out.

Entrant #5 – Tom Lawler

Lawler jumped on Kings back and put on a rear naked choke. The ref said King was passed out and called for the elimination.

Elimination #1 – Brody King (submission)

Entrant #6 – Lance Anoa’i

Anoa’i starting taking out all of the wrestler’s in the ring. Fenix hit Anoa’i with a running dropkick.

Entrant #7 – Rey Horus

Horus hit Doane with an enziguri.

Entrant #8 – Kevin Sullivan

Sullivan had a golden spike in his hand and was taking guys out left and right. Lawler put Sullivan in a rear naked choke and tapped out Sullivan. The crowd booed hard.

Elimination #2 – Kevin Sullivan (submission)

Entrant #9 – Fallah Bahh

Bah hit Hours with a big should tackle and then a big cross body.

Entrant #10 – Swoggle

Swoggle went right up to Bahh and bit him on the butt. He then hit suplexes on Doane and Fenix and Hours. The crowd was chanting suplex city.

Entrant #11 – Headshrinker Samu

Samu headbutt just about everyone in the ring until he came to Anoa’i (his son). The two then double head-butted Bahh. when Samu went to the top rope to play to the crowd Anoa’i pushed him from behind eliminating him.

Elimination #3 – Headshrinker Samu (top rope)

Entrant #12 – ACH

ACH hit a few guys with bionic elbows. He then chopped Swoggle hard and laughed maniacally. Swoggle came back with some big chops of his own getting the better of ACH before he was super kicked by Pentagon.

Entrant #13 – Konnan

Big pop for Konnan. He went face to face with Horus and the two brawled for a second until Lawler went after Konnan. Known got Lawler into an STF type submission but ACH inexplicably broke up the submission.

Entrant #14 – Barrington Hughes

As Hughes was entering Fenix hit a codebreaker on ACH, then Pentagon hit a reverse codebreaker and Fenix pinned ACH.

Elimination #4 – ACH (pinfall)

Bah and Hughes bumped bellies in the center of the ring and Swoggle tried to join them but Lawler instead grabbed Swoggle and put him in a guillotine choke and tapped him out.

Elimination #5 – Swoggle (submission)

Entrant #15 – Jimmy Yuta

Hughes hit a splash on Doane and Anoa’i in the corner and then pinned both of them at the same time.

Elimination #6 – Ken Doane (pinfall)

Elimination #7 – Lance Anoa’i (pinfall)

Hughes then splashed Konnan in the corner (the weakest splash I have ever seen) and pinned Konnan

Elimination #8 – Konnan (pinfall)

Bahh went to give Pentagon and Fenix a clothesline over the top rope but the two men threw Bahh out instead. and then the momentum took them over as well.

Elimination #9 – Fallah Bahh (top rope)

Elimination #10 – Fenix (top rope)

Elimination #11 – Pentagon Jr. (top Rope)

Entrant #16 – Kotto Brazil.

Brazil hit a nice spear through that ropes on Yuta for a two count. Brazil hit Lawler with a nice hurincanrana DDT.

Entrant #17 – Richard Holliday

Holliday was avoiding Hughes until Hughes snuck u behind him and hit a huge chop.

Entrant #18 – Fred Yehi

Yehi and Brazil went at it with intensity and Yehi hit a huge neck breaker on Brazil and then threw him over to Lawler who body slammed Brazil and got a pinfall.

Elimination #12 – Kotto Brazil (pin fall)

Entrant #19 – Jason Cade

Cade and Yuta started arguing and seemed like they might team up but then Cade turned on Yuta but Yuta was ready for it. Cade grabbed onto Hughes’ leg. Yuma, Horus, and Holliday all teamed up on Hughes. Hughes shrugged them all off. Hughes then tossed Horus over the top rope.

Elimination #13 – Rey Horus (top rope)

They all ganged back up on Hughes including Yehi this time. They got Hughes over the top rope but the momentum took all the men out with Hughes.

Elimination #14 – Barrington Hughes (top rope)

Elimination #15 – Fred Yehi (top rope)

Elimination #16 – Richard Holliday (top rope)

Elimination #17 – Jason Cade (top rope)

Elimination #18 – Jimmy Yuta (top rope)

Lawler was the last one left in the ring.

Entrant #20 – Teddy Hart.

Hart walked slowly to the ring. After he entered he sprung off the top rope and moonsualted onto the recently eliminated group. Harts’ feet hit the ground but this seemed intentional.

Elimination #19 – Teddy Hart (top rope)

Entrant #21 – Vandel Ortagun

Ortgun hit Lawler with some stiff strikes. Lawler got Ortagun into an armbar and tapped him out.

Elimination #20 – Vandel Ortagun (submission)

Entrant #22 – Mikey Mondo

Mikey fake swam on the top of the turnbuckle then danced around the ring blowing his whistle. He gave Lawler his back and Lawler put him in a rear naked choke. Mondo was still blowing the while as he was being choked out. He never tapped or passed out but they still called for the elimination.

Elimination #21 – Mikey Mondo (submission)

Entrant #23 – PCO

Lawler went for a cross face on PCO. PCO reversed but Lawler starter reigning down strikes. PCO hit a big sit down power slam on Lawler.

Entrant #24 – La Smooth

Smooth hit a hip attack on PCO in the corner. PCO hit Smooth with a clothesline and pinned Smooth.

Elimination #22 – LA Smooth (pinfall)

Entrant #25 – Simon Gotch

Gotch and Lawler teamed up on PCO. They hit a big double back body drop.

Entrant #26 – Homicide

As Homicide went after PCO Lawler and Gotch stood in the opposite corner and relaxed. Homicide worked over PCO in the corner.

Entrant #27 – Davey Boy Smith Jr.

Smith went after Gotch and Lawler innately let him but then attack Smith when his back was turned.

Entrant #28 – The Blue Meanie

Huge pop for Meanie. The crowd chanted BWO. Meanie tried to get Homicide to dance with him. Homicide acted like he was going to but kicked meanie in the stomach and tossed him out.

Elimination #23 – The Blue Meanie (top rope)

Lawler and Gotch threw PCO over the top rope.

Elimination #24 – PCO (top rope)

Entrant #29 – Michael Patrick

Patrick and Smith startled brawling in the corner and team filthy teamed up on Homicide.

Entrant #30 – Sami Callihan

Callihan tossed out Homicide with an assist from Mike Patrick.

Elimination #25 – Homicide (top rope)

Callihan and Patrick teamed up to try and climate Gotch but Gotch managed to escape.

Entrant #31 – Sawyer Fulton

Fulton and Callihan teamed up on Smith attempting to throw him over the top rope. Smith hung on though

Entrant #32 – Shane Strickland

Strickland went right after Callihan but Fulton held him back. Callihan hit Strickland hit a kick to the groin while Fulton was holding Strickland’s arms.

Entrant #33 – Leon Scott

Scott and Fulton took over the double team on Strickland while Callihan focused on Smith. Then the two joined Callihan and the three were able to eliminate Smith.

Elimination #26 – Davey Boy Smith Jr. (top rope)

Entrant #34 – Drago

Patrick poked Drago in the eye. The Fulton and Callihan brawled with Team Filthy.

Entrant #35 – Leo Brien

The two members of the Stud Sable teamed up and tried to eliminate Gotch to no luck. Callihan jumped on Fulton’s back and Fulton charged into Strickland in the corner. (I guess for more weight? Interesting move)

Entrant #36 – Joey Ryan

Ryan and Callihan started to brawl and Ryan threw Callihan over the top rope Callihan hung one and then used the ramp that was ring height to avoid elimination

Entrant #37 – Maxwell Jacob Friedman

Ryan and MJF exchanged blows. When both men went to hit the ropes Lawler clotheslined MJF out and Gotch clotheslined Ryan out.

Elimination #27 – Maxwell Jacob Friedman (top rope)

Elimination #28 – Joey Ryan (top rope)

Entrant #38 – Jake Hager

The Stud Stable and Callihan and the Death Machines all went at it. Hager threw Leon Scott over the top rope.

Elimination #29 – Leon Scott (top rope)

Fulton and Callihan teamed up and almost eliminated Hager but he managed to hold on.

Entrant #39 – John Hennigan

Hennigan leaped over the top rope and took out Simon Gotch. He then jumped to the apron, slid back in under Mike Patrick and then tossed him out.

Elimination #30 – Mike Patrick (top rope)

Strickland and Hennigan looked to team up.

Entrant #40 – Jimmy Havoc

As the camera was focused on Havoc entering it looks like Hager might have thrown out Gotch but it’s hard to confirm it was Hager.

Elimination #31 – Simon Gotch (top rope)

Havoc tossed out Drago.

Elimination #32 – Drago (top rope)

Strickland hit a double stomp onto Leo Brien. Strickland then tossed Brien over the top rope.

Elimination #33 – Leo Brien (top rope)

Fulton and Callihan teamed up on Hennigan. Shenanigan managed to roll up Fulton and go the pin but Fulton hit a big clothesline on his way out on Hennigan.

Elimination #34 – Sawyer Fulton (pinfall)

Strickland threw Jimmy Havoc over the top rope.

Elimination #35 – Jimmy Havoc (top rope)

Callihan snuck up behind Strickland and threw him over the top rope but Strickland managed to hang on dangling. Callihan didn’t realize Strickland had hung one and when he turned around Strickland managed to pull him over the rope so that the two were both on the apron. Callihan punched Strickland in the crotch and then hit Strickland with a spike piledriver on the apron and Strickland fell to the floor.

Elimination #36 – Shane Strickland (top rope)

Lawler snuck up behind Callihan and applied the rear naked chock. He then threw Callihan to the ground.

Elimination #37 – Sami Callihan (top rope)

Hennigan went for a springboard move but Hager managed to push him over the top rope.

Elimination #38 – John Hennigan (top rope)

Hager and Lawler were the last two. They both took some time to collect themselves. Hager took Lawler down and started stomping away on Lawler. Hager hit a back body drop and got a two count. The crowd was behind Lawler and started chanting filthy Tom. Hager put Lawler on the top turnbuckle but Lawler managed to get Hager into a triangle chokehold over the ropes. Hager lifted Lawler and power bombed him into the ring for a two count. Lawler hit a German suplex. Both men were down in the center of the ring. They stood and exchanged blows in the center of the ring. Lawler started implementing kicks and Hager fell to his knees. Lawler hit some yes kicks on a prone Hager. Lawler hick a big boot to the chest for a two count. Lawler got applied the rear naked chock and Hager walked around the ring with Lawler on his back. Eventually, Hager went to his knees. Hager stood up and flipped Lawler off him. Hager applied the ankle lock. Lawler used the top to leverage himself up to the top turnbuckle. As Lawler started to crawl over the top rope he flung Hager over the top rope eliminating him.

Elimination #39 – Jack Hager (top rope)

WINNER: Tom Lawler

(Karcher’s comments: This was interesting and a lot of fun at times. Just like the Royal Rumble, there were definitely some down moments where it seemed nothing was happening except a bunch of stomps int he corner but overall the action was steady. I think the 60-second clock helped keep things fresh and spared some of the talent that looked like they wouldn’t be able to go very hard for long. I like the added element of pinfalls and submissions being a factor even though they didn’t have all that many of them besides the 4 or 5 guys Lawler put to sleep.  I was expecting them to get more mileage out of the no DQ stipulation and introduce some weapons but they never really did besides Sullivan and the spike. Havoc should have come to the ring with a shopping cart full of weapons and livened the match up towards the end. They had some nice surprises in here but most were nostalgic acts that got a good pop but failed to really deliver in the ring. It is nice to see MLW book all this talent though and hopefully, some of the guys like PCO and John Hennigan can turn into regular roster members. Tom Lawler seemed to turn face during theca course of the match and the crowd was really behind him. I think the last two guys could have showcased someone more exciting then Hager but it worked to get over Lawler and give the crowd the victory they could get behind so I’m not too mad at it.  I like Lawler’s character work in MLW and his matches have been serviceable. I’d be interested to see if this leads to a title run for him. Seeing as he can use the challenge whenever he wants it would make him look really stupid not to use this at a super convenient time and get an easy win at some point. Especially considering he doesn’t seem to be the honorable good guy just yet. Overall great match that was just a lot of fun to watch… and a pain in the butt to recap. I did my best!) 

Matt Striker went into the center of the ring to interview Lawler. He asked the crowd to give Lawler a standing ovation. He asked Lawler for his thoughts. He said he is the best athlete in combat sports and now he gets what he deserves, a shot at the title. Striker called him a major league talent and Lawler said that was an interesting word. Major league. He said he wants to take the M in MLW and change it to stand for Filthy Tom Lawler. (I don’t think that works but okay) Striker then said the dawn of Major Lawler Wrestling is upon us. (I guess Lawler wanted to say the L in MLW, not the M.

FINAL THOUGHTS: This was a fun show. We got a really good opening match between two guys that can really go. We got a nice character based match introducing a new title. And finally, we got the first ever Battle Riot. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the battle riot but I was pleasantly surprised. Hopefully, this show gets a good buzz going for MLW and starts to bring in some more fans. This episode already has the most views of any episode of Fusion on MLW’s youtube channel. By the way, in case I haven’t mentioned it yet these shows are all uploaded onto MLW’s Youtube channel the day after they air on BeIn sports. I’m very interested in what direction MLW takes on the TV show moving forward and if these two-hour specials become more of a regular thing going forward. That’s it for this week. Be sure to check back right here next week for my MLW Fusion Report here on PWtorch.com.


NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S SHOW: 7/20 MLW FUSION TV REPORT: Strickland defends MLW Title against Low Ki, gruesome hardcore match with Tom Lawler vs. Jimmy Havoc

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