MLW FUSION – EPISODE 41
JANUARY 24, 2019
TAPED IN MIAMI, FLA
AIRED ON BE-IN SPORTS NETWORK
REPORT BY KRIS KARCHER, PWTORCH CORRESPONDENT
Announcers: Tony Schiavone, Ruch Boccini
They played MLW intro.
A short video aired paying tribute to Dr. Rex Bacchus. AKA Chris Sims a Florida indie wrestler that had some ties to MLW. Sims passed away after a battle with cancer at the age of 35. Sims had also wrestled in Evolve, ACW, and Full Impact Pro among many other indie promotions.
They aired a video package highlighting Sami Callihan’s involvement with Salina de La Renta and Promociones Dorado, including taking out various targets like M.V.P, Shane Strickland, and Tom Lawler. Then they showed the footage from two weeks ago where, Callihan hunted down Lawler, but Lawler came out on top, licking the bloody hammer, after emerging from an unseen brawl. La Renta said Callihan was hired to fix a problem and instead has become a problem himself. She said tonight, LA Park is going to take care of that problem, and she’s going to make sure that he won’t stop until Callihan is either fired or dead.
The Fusion intro played.
(Karcher’s Analysis: Good intro to sell the upcoming main event. It’s tough sometimes to keep MLW’s longer running storylines in mind, because they only have one hour a week, and the tapings are spread so thin that sometimes long-running storylines like Callihan’s involvement with Promociones Dorado fly under the radar. I thought this was a good video package to refresh the audience and remind everyone that there is a long-running story forming between Callihan and La Renta and Low Ki. I could see Callihan as a future title contender taking on Lawler if he can win the belt on Saturday.)
Schiavone introduced the show and plugged MLW’s SuperFight live broadcast next Saturday night February 2nd at 8 pm. MLW will be airing two title fights during the show, including the World Tag Team Champions The Lucha Brothers (Pentagon Jr. and Rey Fenix) tag on the Hart Foundation (Teddy Hart, Davey Boy Smith Jr., and Brian Pillman Jr.) and the MLW World Heavyweight Championship match between champion Low Ki, and challenger Tom Lawler.
Tickets are still available at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia PA to the SuperFight card in person. visit MLWGO.com for ticket information.
Tonight’s main event will see Sami Callihan taking on LA Park in a falls count anywhere match. Also, Barrington Hughes will take on Ace Romero, and Schiavone has assured us that the ring has been reinforced.
They went right to the right as Vandel Ortagun was at the tail end of his entrance.
(1) Vandel Ortagun vs. Kotto Brazil
Ortagun jumped Brazil as the bell rang, stomping Brazil into the corner and then tossing him through the ropes, to the outside. Brazil was able to fight back, however, showing off his speed and athleticism by spinning on the apron, knocking Ortagun’ legs out from underneath him and then dragging him outside, and hitting a spinning kick to the chest off the apron. The commentary was focusing on if the eye patch would effect on Brazil’s offense. Brazil hit the ropes then dove to the outside, connecting with Ortagun with a suicide dive. Brazil followed that up with a second dive, then a front flip over the top rope to top it off. Brazil got a pop and threw Ortagun back into the ring. Back inside the ring, Ortagun ducked under Brazil as Brazil came in off the top rope, but Brazil rolled through and hit a running boot. Brazil attempted a swinging neck breaker, but Ortagun was able to block, then Ortagun pulled on Brazil’s eye patch. This caused Brazil to hit the mat, and Ortagun hit a knee then got a two count. Ortagun hit a belly to back suplex for another two. Ortagun took out Brazil with a huge backhand. Ortagun whipped Brazil into the turnbuckle then choked Brazil using the middle rope. Ortagun continued to stomp away at Brazil and even took some time to pander to the crowd. Ortagun continued to try and use the injured eye to his advantage, grabbing the eye patch. Brazil was able to fight back, however, and land a set of German Suplexes. Brazil slammed Ortagun’s head into the turnbuckle using his legs, then followed that up with another German Suplex, this time bridging for the pin and getting a two count. Kotto hit a springboard crossbody for another two. Brazil hit a series of hard chops to the chest of Ortagun. Ortagun hit a twisting backbreaker for a two count. The crowd was chanting “Gobble Gobble”, I believe due to Ortagun’s beard looking similar to the Snood of a turkey. Ortagun went for a Powerbomb but Brazil was able to counter with a hurricanrana. Brazil hit a Code Red for a two count but was able to transition right into a rear naked choke. Brazil then hit a cutter and then another running cutter for the win. After the match, Rickey Martinez came out and attacked Brazil. Martinez stole Brazil’s eye patch as he stood over his victim.
WINNER: Kotto Brazil
(Karcher’s Analysis: Average match here nothing too special. Nice to get Brazil back in the mix. I’m not loving this program with Martinez but I’m not hating it either. It’s good stuff for where Brazil is on the card I think. I wonder though if there is potential to do anything more with Brazil. It’s a shame we don’t see much of that middleweight title, as there are a few guys that I think could really heat up that division and really become a new iteration of what the X- Division was in TNA. There definitely is potential there is all I’m saying.)
They showed footage from the Singapore cane match between Brian Pillman Jr. and Tommy Dreamer from two weeks ago. Tommy Dream was on the phone with Rich Bocchini. Dreamer said Pillman was crazy for challenging him to a match with a mystery partner, in Dreamers own backyard. He said he won’t have o look very far for a partner because he has an entire arena full of family and friends. He said Pillman will lose no matter who he finds, and told Pillman to never disrespect him again.
(2) Barrington Hughes vs. Ace Romero
They played a picture in picture promo from Hughes during his entrance. He said he was the original super heavyweight and he was the Caramel Colossus. The two big men started the match with an intense staredown. The crowd chanted this is awesome before they even touched. Both men locked up and then disengaged. Hughes blocked a shoulder tackle from Romero. Romero punched Hughes, but Hughes no sold the punch and asked for another which Romero obliged. Romero hit a running dropkick in the corner on Hughes. They stared off in the center of the ring again. Colonel Parker interrupted on the mic and said he hadn’t seen so much pork in one place since his grandaddies BBQ. He said Hughes should have been in the pie eating contest down the street. The Dirty Blondes then entered the ring and started attacking Hughes and Romero. The ring announcer very quickly announced the ref has made the decision to change the match to a tag team match. Really? That was like 2 seconds of brawling before the ref just randomly decides to change the match? This was lame. Not to mention the fact that no match has ever been improved by adding the Dirty Blondes last minute.
(3) Barrington Hughes & Ace Romero vs. The Dirty Blondes (Mike Patrick & Leon Scott)
The Blondes were double-teaming Romero, but Romero was able to smash both blondes together and Hughes took out both men with a double clothesline. Romero and Hughes then picked up the blondes and smashed them together before both coverings for the double pin and the win.
WINNERS: Barrington Hughes & Ace Romero
(Karcher’s Analysis: I’ll keep this short and sweet. I don’t see the value in any of these four guys. Okay, I see some special attraction value in Romero and Hughes, but not much, and I’d rather that time spent elsewhere at this point.)
They aired another graphic plugging the debut of Mance Warner coming to MLW. I believe he debuts this Saturday at SuperFight.
Next Friday night Tommy Dreamer and Brian Pillman go one on one in an empty arena match.
Schiavone was about to run down the SuperFight card again when the feed was interrupted by some fake advertisement for Quagmire Ribs.
They aired footage of Brian Pillman Jr. arriving in Miami. He said he’s already seen way too many fat people and blamed the Latin American culture. They cut to Pillman and Teddy Hart holding cats. Hart said the cats had the faces of winners. He complimented their beautiful eyes. He said he sees the fear in the eyes of the Lucha Brothers even though they hide behind their masks. He said he is the king of the jungle and his cats keep him company. He said cats have seven lives and keep demons away. They cut to another video of the two of them drinking a protein shake, and then finally one last video where they boop the car on the nose.
Matt Striker runs down the SuperFight card.
Here is the card so far.
- Low Ki (c) vs. Tom Lawler (MLW Heavyweight Championship)
- Hart Foundation vs. Lucha Brothers (MLW Tag Team Championships)
- Kotto Brazil vs. Ricky Martinez
- Ace Austin vs. Rich Swann
- Rey Horus vs. Aerostar
- DJZ vs. Myron Reed
- Gringo Loco vs. Puma King
- Pillman and ? vs. Dreamer and ?
- Ace Romero vs. Simon Gotch
- Mance Warner debut
- MJF in Action
They aired a video where Sami Callihan was pretending to cry and be upset that La Renta was displeased with him. He shook off the act and said he does not care about their message or their goals. He said he only did what he did because he is a maniac and he is for hire. He complained that he only messed up one little thing and now La Renta is sicking La Parka on him. He said he isn’t scared. He said he will take out La Park just like he has done with the rest of the MLW roster. He mentioned Strickland, Havoc, and MVP, saying he sent them all packing and tonight La Park is leaving in a body bag. He closed with his thumbs up thumbs down bit.
They aired a video of Low Ki addressing Tom Lawler. Low Ki congratulated Lawler on reaching the championship match at SuperFight. He ran through Lawler’s accomplishments. Low Ki asked why Lawler never addressed the significant amount of money missing from his joint bank account with his former wife. He also mentioned Lawler advancing in the title tournament with a broken wrist. He said Lawler was too busy mocking Low Ki. He said Lawler was going to be putting his reputation for being filthy on the line. He said people know about his reputation and sometimes people say he takes things too far. He said maybe next week, at the 2300 Arena, he should take things to the extreme.
(Karcher’s Analysis: I’m not sure what Low Ki is talking about with the money missing from the account and Lawler advancing in the tournament. Is that going to be a storyline going forward? Have they addressed this before? Just seemed shoehorned in there out of nowhere.)
(4) Sami Callihan vs. LA Park (w/Salina de La Renta) – Falls Count Anywhere
Park placed the Mexican flag on the ring and kneeled before it paying respects. Callihan attempted to get the crowd to cheer him to no avail. The two men exchanged chops and kicks. Park wanted Callihan to take off his jacket, Callihan did and Park slapped his exposed chest hard. Callihan was selling the slap hard, almost crying in the ring. Park chopped Callihan a second time. Callihan crashed into Park in the corner, but Park followed up with the same and did his little strut after. Park knocked Callihan to the mat and got a two count. Callihan rolled to the outside. Park followed. Park hit Callihan with a chair, one of the kinds that don’t fold. Park hit Callihan with an aluminum trash can, then seated Callihan on the chair and dove onto him from inside the ring. Park whipped Callihan with his belt. Park went for a suicide dive, but Callihan was able to hit Park in the head with a trash can. Callihan hit Park with another trash can shot to the head and followed that up with a shot from a baking pan. Callihan then hit Park with a traffic cone, then with Park’s own belt. Callihan mocked Park’s strut. Callihan drug Park over to the entrance ramp. Callihan licked his hand then slapped Park with it. Callihan garbed a fan’s beer and smashed it on Park. Park sidestepped a charging Callihan and Callihan went over the barricade into the crowd. Park hit Callihan with a trashcan and then destroyed the barricade, propping one panel up against another panel making a surface to put someone through or on top of. Park then placed a trashcan on top, and suplexed Callihan onto the barricade and trash can stack. Park tossed a bunch of chairs into the ring. Park then hit Callihan with a chair in the back. I want to stress these are not folding chairs. They are banquette style. Park tossed more weapons into the ring. Park went for a cover in the crowd and got a two. Callihan grabbed a beer and hit Park with it. Callihan and Park went into the back and continued to brawl backstage. This must have sucked for the live crowd because I don’t imagine they had a live feed. They brawled outside to the front entrance steps. They made their way back into the arena through the fan entrance. Callihan whipped Park into the barricade then hit him with another beer. Park rolled Callihan into the ring, and Callihan took out the ref as he rolled in. The ref looked hurt. Park went for the cover and got a two. The ref was selling his ankle. La Renta was pissed at the ref. Callihan got a boot up to a charging Park but Park hit a huge powerbomb. The ref counted but couldn’t make the three count because of his injury to his ankle. Yes, you read that correctly. Park hit the ref with a cooking sheet and Callihan low blowed Park. This spot didn’t really make sense here because it was no DQ but I digress. Callihan rolled up Park and the ref made a miraculous comeback to make the count. Park still kicked out at 2. Callihan set up four chairs in the ring. Callihan went for a powerbomb, but Park countered and eventually speared Callihan through the chair setup. That was good for a three count.
WINNER: LA Park
(Karcher’s Analysis: Good match. Some good brawling type stuff here. I’ve said it before but I’m not a huge fan of hardcore or brawling style matches but I actually like the way MLW usually does them. The spots always seem to make sense for the feuds that are involving and the violence never seems over the top for just for the sake of violence alone. La Park is such an interesting act to me because he doesn’t have the body of a top guy anymore, but the experience and just natural charisma add up to an act that really has some gas left and can really be a nice addition to a solid wrestling roster. I’d like to see Callihan get a more prominent role in the company perhaps getting him involved in the title picture sooner rather than later.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: A decent episode of Fusion. They have done a good job of getting people excited for some of the matchups at SuperFight. The two title matches should be really good, and some of the undercard matches have potential as well. I’m not sure what MLW is going to air on Friday aside from the empty arena match. I don’t have beIn sports so unfortunately, I won’t be able to watch live on Saturday. I will have another detailed recap of everything happens on both Friday and Saturday this weekend and you can read those reports exclusively here on PWtorch.com. I’m Kris Karcher and that’s it for me today. Be sure to check back next week and please if you have any thoughts about the show, leave a comment below or hit me up on twitter, @TheLariatPW.