Both teams for Chikara's annual Cibernetico event have been announced.
The Cibernetico Rises sixteen man, two team event will happen from The Highline Ballroom in Manhattan, NY, on Sunday, (Nov. 18) at 1:00 p.m. ET; with the reasonable expectation that one of the teams is going to implode, and one of the teams will be a well-oiled unit.
Looking at each lineup, if you guessed that Chikara's team, helmed by Eddie Kingston, and including his newest mortal enemy Tim Donst, would be the one that would blow up first, congratulations, you're myopic, or at the very least a dedicated Chikara fan. There's nothing wrong with either, by the by.
If you think it's a tossup between that combustible pairing and the fact Kevin Steen's team includes the Young Bucks, then you, like me, probably expend way too much storage space in your brain to the state of American independent wrestling overall.
Obviously, Chikara continuity is the thing that is paramount here. It is their promotion, and they have a duty to telling the story they want to tell. Any promotion booking across the entire wrestling world would be wise to do the same.
The story right now is that Donst has a Grand Plan. It's unknown whether he has beef with Kingston or just wants his title. As shown by his attack of the Grand Champion after his hard-fought match with Tadasuke at this year's King of Trios weekend though, it's clear he wants to torment the War King for some reason.
These two cannot coexist on the same team. I would be shocked if they did make it through the entire match without some kind of flare up.
However, Chikara knows its place in the independents is at somewhat of a crossroads, a safehouse where really everyone comes to play and to seek representation. They've done joint cards with Ring of Honor this year (and Team Steen is a representation of this) and with Dragon Gate in 2010. They often have emissary teams from other promotions in their King of Trios tournament. Pro Wrestling Guerrilla exists in the Chikara universe, as there was a Team PWG in two of the first three KoT tournaments.
Fans of PWG know that Steen and the Bucks HATE each other. For the better part of 2011, Steen was waging war with the resident brats of SoCal, whether it was with Akira Tozawa or Super Dragon by his side. It wasn't one of those happy-go-lucky PWG dream match feuds where guys just had matches on several shows either.
All their matches took very personal turns. Especially the seminal Bucks vs. Steen/Dragon match at FEAR at the end of last year as a Guerrilla Warfare (read, no DQ) match. I would not put it past Chikara to lay the match out in a way that might feed into that bad blood, especially at the behest of the guys in it.
It's not like there's no precedent here. The Steen/El Generico feud has raged over two promotions. Steen to me seems like a guy who is bent on creating stories that aren't necessarily for fans of single companies, but are for fans of his. Sure, they can get part of the picture and have it feel like the whole thing by just watching PWG or ROH. However, the whole portrait comes into play by watching him everywhere he goes and following him on Twitter.
Chikara is very much a company like that as well.
I'm not saying a flare-up between Steen and the Bucks on Sunday is a lock. I'm also not saying you should be disappointed if Donst and Kingston getting into a dust up, because Donst is a jerk and Kingston doesn't forget people who jump him, is the only thing that happens.
What I am saying is, there are layers to this match. Some of which may, or may not, be readily evident just by looking at a match listing and then considering nothing other than the immediate context of the wrestlers. That, and the fact the company has a history of painting with far broader strokes than the canvas they have allows for.