KELLER & POWELL FLAGSHIP (11/14)
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MLW FURY ROAD – EPISODE 60
JUNE 1, 2019
AIRED ON BEIN SPORTS NETWORK
REPORTS BY MATT CASTLEBERRY, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Rich Bocchini, Jim Cornette
The MLW intro aired first tonight.
A recap of last week was shown, where CONTRA Unit destroyed half of the MLW roster it seemed. Romero, Hughes, the Lucha Bros, Low Ki, and Tom Lawlor all got wrecked by CONTRA.
The Fury Road intro aired next, as they cut into Bocchini and Cornette at the announce desk. Cornette mentioned how the weather had been bad in Milwaukee, so Tom Lawlor hadn’t even made it to the arena yet. The two of them ran down the known part of the card, and then they tossed it to the ring for our opening bout.
(1) MYRON REED vs. GRINGO LOCO
Myron Reed made his way out alone, tape over his mouth, and carrying a sign saying #JUSTICE. Rich mentioned how he wasn’t sure who’s side to take on the officiating scandal going on with Reed and Rich Swann, who was absent tonight. Gringo Loco would make his way out next, but you couldn’t hear his music so he looked like he was dancing to music in his head.
Reed and Loco stood face to face and pushed one another. They both started running the ropes, and Gringo slid out of the ring, but Reed came over the top with a swanton onto Loco. We rolled Gringo back in but only got a two count. Myron whipped Gringo into the corner, and followed him in, but Gringo flipped out of the way and across the ring where he danced for the crowd. The two ran the ropes again, and this time Reed tried for a flying headscissor, but Gringo flipped through it and landed on his feet leaving Reed frustrated.
Reed finally took control hitting an enziguri, but couldn’t capitalize and took one of his own from Gringo. Reed recovered quick though, and hit a jawbreaker on the apron on Gringo who was in the ring. Reed followed that with a slingshot leg drop for a two count. Reed pounded Loco with a few forearms, and then cinched in a rear chinlock to slow things down. Gringo made it to his feet, and broke free with elbows. Gringo picked Reed up in a fireman’s carry, and rolled it into the corner. Gringo rolled further through and went straight to the top for a moonsault, but all he got was two feet to the face.
Reed charged Loco, but Loco turned it into a running sitdown powerbomb for a two count. Gringo was calling for the end of the match, and climbed up top. Reed caught him on the way up with a kick to the back. Reed climbed up top as well, but Gringo crotched him. Gringo then went all the way to the top, picked Reed up, and came off with an avalanche falcon arrow, but could only get a two because it took awhile to make the cover. Gringo seemed to be in control, but Reed snatched away momentum with a cutter of the ropes. Reed hit a springboard 450 for a CLOSE two count, but began arguing with the ref afterwards.
Gringo had recovered, and tried to take advantage of a distracted Reed, but Reed reversed the suplex attempt into a stunner. Reed came off the ropes, but Gringo rolled him up into a pinning position. Myron reversed the pin into a pin of his own, but the ref caught him holding the ropes for leverage before he counted three. Reed was frustrated and grabbed the ref by his shirt, and while he was distracted Gringo Loco scooped him up and hit a spinning tombstone piledriver for a three count.
WINNER: Gringo Loco
After the match, Reed reached into his pants and pulled out a foreign object, decking Gringo Loco with it. Reed left to a chorus of boos, while Gringo recovered in the ring.
(Matt’s Thoughts: Good opening bout between Gringo and Reed. Both men can go in the ring, so you would expect them to work well together, and they did. The story arc continues with Myron Reed feeling he is being treated unfairly by the officials, but he proved why between trying to steal a cheap win by holding the ropes and afterwards hitting Gringo Loco with the “knucks” as Cornette was apt to call them. Not a lot of other story surrounding this match, but it did its job as the opener!)
Salina de la Renta was standing by next with an announcement. Salina told us everyone wants more of her, so Court Bauer has decided she would run a second show. She said on June 15th she would be running Fusion again.
Rich and Jim told us that up next would be the finals of the National Openweight Title Tournament, featuring Alex Hammerstone and Brian Pillman Jr. Jim then told us of Milwaukee legend, The Crusher, who would be honored next week with the unveiling of a statue in his honor at the Milwaukee Arena.
Kaci was standing by backstage to do an interview with Tom Lawlor, but for some reason he still hadn’t shown up to the arena. She said normally he was the first person there, but she had been knocking on his door for thirty minutes and had gotten no response. Kaci said she would keep looking for him, and keep Rich and Jim up to date on the situation.
(2) ALEX HAMMERSTONE vs. BRIAN PILLMAN JR. – NATIONAL OPENWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP TOURNAMENT FINAL
Brian Pillman Jr. made his way out first, sporting a new bleached blonde mullet, which was definitely over with the crowd. Alex Hammerstone was second to the ring, MJF and Richard Holliday in tow. Hammerstone sent them back to the back, but MJF made a stop at the announce table. MJF said that if Pillman Sr. was still alive, he’d be throwing up right now at the sight of his son. Neither Jim nor Rich took kindly to that and sent him on his way.
Pillman and Hammerstone locked up, Pillman getting the early edge with a wristlock. Pillman laid in several stiff chops that would have made Ric Flair proud. Pillman hit a few forearm shots, then whipped Hammerstone towards the opposite corner. Alex reversed it, but Pillman jumped over the now charging Hammerstone, and followed it up with a clothesline into the corner. Pillman hit a shotgun dropkick into the corner, then used a cradle to roll Hammerstone up but only for a two count.
Hammerstone came up out of the cradle and hit a big front kick on Brian Pillman Jr. Alex sent Pillman into the corner, hitting him with shoulder blocks. After a few elbow strikes, Hammerstone tried to suplex Pillman inside out from the ring to the floor, but Pillman broke out and hit a stiff right jab. Pillman then hit a dropkick on Hammerstone which sent him to the floor, and followed it with a springboard body press. Pillman hit a nice European uppercut, then sent Hammerstone into the guardrailing. Pillan sprinted around the ring, looking for another body press, but Hammerstone caught him in midair, and then tossed him into the guardrail.
Hammerstone hit Pillman with a powerbomb on the apron, and then rolled him into the ring. Alex only managed a two count, because it took a bit to get him into the ring. Hammerstone hit several knee strikes to the face and ribs. He pulled Pillman back up, and locked in an abdominal stretch. Pillman tried to break free, but Hammerstone hit a huge lariat for a two count. Hammerstone gave Pillman a hard whip into the corner, and then into the opposite corner.
Pillman fought his way back with a couple of chops, followed by a superkick for a two count. Pillman hit a springboard crossbody block for a VERY close two. Pillman went up top next, but he missed the swanton attempt, which gave Hammerstone the advantage. Alex picked up Pillman, lifted him up, and hit the nightmare pendulum for a three count.
WINNER: Alexander Hammerstone
Hammerstone had his new title placed around his waist by the official as he celebrated in the ring. Kaci Lennox was in the ring to interview Hammerstone, who took the mic and told her to leave. He said Brian had tried to ride his Dad’s name to the title, while he was putting in the work. He said the title was more than his destiny, not it was Dynasty.
(Matt’s Thoughts: A really good final, that made both men look good. Alex Hammerstone is the perfect person to be the inaugural Openweight champion, as it’s someone you can see holding the title for a while. Pillman, even in the loss, showed he can stand in the ring with the big boys. Both of these men are future superstars, and both showed glimpses of why tonight.)
Rich told us that our next match would be the main event, as Teddy Hart defended his Middleweight title against Jimmy Havoc.
A short Austin Aries teaser aired, as soon he will be making his MLW debut.
Rich and Jim were again talking about the main event, when an impromptu video from CONTRA Unit ran from earlier in the day. Apparently the production truck had been taken over by CONTRA. The video showed CONTRA attacking and kidnapping Tom Lawlor earlier in the afternoon. It then cut to Lawlor being bound and taped to a chair somewhere, the CONTRA flag flying in the background. This looked like an ISIS video. Josef Samael and Jacob Fatu stalked around Lawlor. Samael said they were going to teach Tom a lesson, a lesson that they could take whatever they want whenever they want, and then Samael proceeded to cut off Lawlor’s hair. Samael said they were CONTRA Unit, and they were here to take anything at any time.
They show moved back to the ring, but it was obvious that everyone was shaken up, so they went to break.
Jim apologized to the fans for what they had just seen, and that they wouldn’t be showing it again. He said it seemed like everyone in the production truck was okay, but a couple of people had quit. Rich said hopefully the main event was still on its way, as we get a hype video for the match. The video showed both men’s path to Fury Road, giving us clips from several of their matches.
(3) JIMMY HAVOC vs. TEDDY HART – MLW MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
The challenger, Jimmy Havoc, made his way out first with a chair in hand. Jim Cornette told us how much he disliked Havoc, calling him the Hannibal Lecter of professional wrestling. The Champ was next out, also with chair in hand as well, carrying both his title belts. Formal championship match introductions were made, and Hart and Havoc shook hands.
Teddy starts off the match doing a backflip off the top rope just to show he can. Havoc charged Hart in the corner but missed, and Hart answered with several strikes. Hart used the chair to hit Havoc in the stomach several times. Hart hit a springboard tornillo on Havoc for a two count. Hart worked over Havoc’s arm in the corner, and then sent Havoc down locking him in the rings of Saturn as they went to a break.
Coming back from break, Hart still controlled the match. Jimmy tried to fight out of the corner with an elbow, but he missed a second rope dropkick. Teddy hit a straight jacket lung blower on Havoc, and then hit a powerbomb lung blower for good measure. Jim told us that Tom Lawlor had apparently just staggered up to the building, as something was going on in the back. Hart hit a moonsault for a close two. Jim told us Lawlor had been severely beaten and had made his way to a ticket window asking for help, and that he was being taken to the hospital.
Teddy, in the meantime, was going for a piledriver on the spron, but Havoc got out of it. Havoc his Hart with a forearm, and then with a front kick, before hitting a cutter onto a chair one the apron. Havoc rolled Teddy back in the ring, placed his head against the ring post, and hit him with a chair which busted Hart open. Jimmy Havoc took a cardstock 8×10 and gave Hart a papercut in the corners of his mouth. Havoc then suplexed Hart onto a guardrail lying against the ring, and followed it up with a second, before rolling Hart into the ring. Havoc got a two count after hitting Teddy with a chair.
Teddy reversed a whip into a chair into his own, sending Havoc headfirst into the corner. He put Havoc on the ropes, and went up for a super hurricanrana, but Havoc rolled it through on the ground when they hit and applied a sharp shooter. Hart crawled his way to the ropes slowly, as blood poured down his face. Havoc went up top, but Hart threw a chair at his head. Hart thought he had turned the tide, but Havoc his a canadian destroyer off the second rope. Havoc tried for the acid rainmaker, but Hart ducked it and came off the ropes hitting his own destroyer on Havoc. Hart picked up Havoc, lifted him into a hammerlock, and dropped him for a hammerlock DDT and the three count.
WINNER: Teddy Hart
(Matt’s Thoughts: I love Teddy Hart. He is arguably the most fun person to watch in the ring in MLW, as he is always coming up with new and creative moves and variations of moves. Jimmy Havoc worked well with Teddy, and brought just enough violence where you thought he may have a shot a winning, but not so much that it turned into an overtly violent match. It was a good balance of styles, and the epitome of what MLW is about. Teddy retained, which is the right move in my opinion, but again Havoc looked like one of the most dangerous men in MLW.)
A bloody Teddy Hart was attacked by the Dynasty before he could celebrate his win, but the Hart Foundation came in to even the odds. The six men brawled in and out of the ring as the show went off the air.
FINAL ANALYSIS: Fury Road was another good night of MLW action. The opener was an entertaining match, which furthered the Myron Reed story with the officials in MLW. Taking a loss in that way didn’t hurt him at all, and Gringo Loco got a much needed win. Alex Hammerstone and Brian Pillman Jr. put on a good match in the National Openweight Title Tournament Finals, as Hammerstone became the inaugural champion. This was also another chapter in the Dynasty vs. Hart Foundation feud, which is still heating up. Finally Teddy Hart survived against Jimmy Havoc, only to be attacked afterwards by the Dynasty, adding another layer to the feud. All of that, on top of CONTRA Unit literally assaulting and kidnapping Tom Lawlor, and you have one heck of a show. Where we go from here is what’s on everyone’s mind. Has the Dynasty and Hart Foundation rivalry reached its peak, or is it just beginning to get hot? Can ANYONE stop CONTRA Unit from destroying MLW? Is Tom Lawlor even healthy enough to move forward as champion going forward? We shall et answer to all of that, and more, in the weeks to come. The next big event is King of Colosseum, but next week we’re back to our weekly Fusion. Until then… Matt out!