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Style Battle Season 1, Episode 6 recap & review: Barrett Brown impresses, Jarek 1:20 does a magic trick, and several men are in BIG TROUBLE

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The show begins a few minutes past the scheduled bell time with Trevin Adams and Mister Saint Laurent in the ring to welcome us to the show and hype up the card.

Chip Day vs. Ethan Case (Style Battle S1E6 Bracket B First Round Match)

Case a name we've seen here at Style Battle before, a hard-hitting indie main event heavyweight, posed here against Day, a striking specialist who kicks louder than anyone else in North America.

Chip largely able to keep Case off balance early, forcing Ethan to fight from underneath, trying to make openings wherever he can. Big kick ducked, neckbreaker drop gets two, and Case starts to put it together only to get caught out with a kick to the knee and the Day of the Dead double knee. Tornado DDT, but Ethan's still in it and able to stop him short on a follow-up...

Ethan Case wins by pinfall with a Crash Landing.

Fun opener but it was only just getting going when it ended. Would really enjoy seeing a longer match between these two down the line, whether in a WWN promotion or elsewhere.

Case is interviewed and agrees that Day is the South's Best Kept Secret and puts those deadly kicks over, but the difference between them is he's not here to be a secret, he's here to be a household name.

John Skyler vs. Thomas Sharp (Style Battle S1E6 Bracket B First Round Match)

Skyler is able to go hold-for-hold with almost anyone in almost any style but perhaps, as a self-proclaimed roughneck, is most at home in a straight-up fight, whereas Sharp, perhaps better known as Blaster McMassive, a mountain of a powerhouse of a man who nonetheless is equally at home on the top rope as he is on the mat.

Thomas beginning the match disdainfully but it's a bit of a mistake as John steps the attack up until Sharp is forced to take him seriously. And he does, the big man deciding he'd be happy to take the countout but taking care to keep a slingshot spear from becoming a turning point and staying on Skyler.

Struggle on the apron, Thomas thinking chokeslam but the Southern Savior hits the apron spear and it makes for the comeback he wants! Boot in the corner, he scales the big man...

John Skyler wins by pinfall with a victory roll.

Again I find myself wishing that had went a little longer, but first round tourney matches, what can you do? Good stuff, though, maybe the best match I've seen from Sharp under his current name.

Skyler says he's been a top prospect for too long but tonight he makes his name. He's beat up but it's gonna take a lot more than a couple ribs to keep the Southern Savior from rising to the top.

Barrett Brown vs. Caleb Konley (Style Battle S1E6 Bracket A First Round Match)

Konley well known to WWN regulars for his high flying acumen, his bad attitude, and his number of abs, Brown a man who I've only seen once before, on the Evolve shows in Texas earlier this year, but that was an impressive showing all the same.

Caleb jumps Barrett out the gates, but it's not long before the Texan takes flight to even the score. Konley gets dirty on the outside and resumes a dominant position, trying to torture Brown with a surfboard. Cutting off a rally with a Blue Thunder Driver nearfall, Barrett does a satellite guillotine choke, blocks the suplex reversal, chaining kicks together and hoping for the upset!

Jockeying for position, pop-up stomp... NO GOOD! Caleb with the bridging Regalplex... NOT ENOUGH! Looking for a pop-up, denied, superkick into a wild inside-out suplex, only a nearfall, Shot in the Dark... ONE STEP AWAY! Up in the turnbuckles, avalanche hurricanrana... KONLEY ROLLS THROUGH AND HOLDS ON! DEADLIFT POWERBOMB! BUCKLE BOMB! SUPLEX DROPPED INTO ANOTHER POWERBOMB, INTO THE HALF CRAB! BROWN ROLLS THROUGH INTO A PIN!

He's throwing forearms, trying his absolute damnedest, Konley sets him up in the corner and crotches him, fireman's carry...

Caleb Konley wins by pinfall with the avalanche fireman's carry Michinoku Driver.

That match ruled. It's easy for me to forget how great Caleb Konley can be, and Barrett Brown absolutely stepped up to the challenge and delivered huge on the stage he had here. Excellent match.

Konley says he's pretty excited, he's the biggest star, he's on PopTV in case you didn't know, and he's been running WWN for damn near ten years. He's been a champion in Dragon Gate, Evolve, FIP, and tonight, he's bringing it home to Charlotte, North Carolina as Style Battle champion.

Fred Yehi vs. Jarek 1:20 (Style Battle S1E6 Bracket A First Round Match)

Yehi, of course, a hell of a hybrid technician, approaching the grappling arts from a very unorthodox (and stompy!) perspective. Jarek I'll admit to not being at all familiar with, but he's billed as "the Illusionist" and I have a feeling this is going to be, well, a real battle of styles.

Indeed, Jarek begins by bringing a woman into the ring for a magic trick, having her pick a card and sign it. He folds it up and has her bite down on it before taking the next card and signing it himself. He folds it up and bites down and takes her hands, looks into her eyes, and pulls his card into his mouth before spitting it out and pulling it out to reveal her card!

Onto the wrestling, feeling out through mat grappling, Jarek going hold-for-hold with the FIP World Heavyweight Champion until he eats a stomp to the hand. A chop pops 1:20 up into the Tree of Woe, so Yehi is getting ready for his match against WALTER next week by buffing his chops up, clearly!

Jarek rallying with an enzugiri, Fred blasts him with the nuke, but the escapologist keeps his cool and puts the pressure on. Turning into a slugfest, chop for chop, Yehi blocks one and drops the foot stomp, bowling him over, to the corner, bridging German suplex nearfall, holding on and rolling into a second and a third!

...JAREK PULLS A COIN OUT FROM BEHIND FRED'S EAR! He offers a coin flip but it's a ruse and he gets a nearfall off a straight left to the neck! Yehi slips out of the gutwrench, rolling elbow... NOPE! 1:20 fires a slap off and the deck of cards goes flying out of nowhere! Fred's sick to his stomach, dry heaving... HE THREW UP A FOLDED UP CARD! IT'S THE CARD FROM EARLIER!

Ready with a superkick... NO GOOD! Yehi with a wicked pop-up DDT into the reverse STO, there's only one way this ends...

Fred Yehi wins by submission with the Koji Clutch.

If you had told me this morning that a match with literal magic tricks in it could be this good I would have been a little bit skeptical, but this was awesome, but the pure wrestling bits and the crazy fun magic trick bits.

Yehi is interviewed but wants to know where Trevin is, because he'd know better than to ask him about feelings, since they're fickle and they don't matter. But that was no magic trick, he made him tap out and word on the street is that Fred Yehi is the MVP of 2017. Konley has a heck of a resume but he'll be in BIG TROUBLE in the semis.

Ethan Case vs. John Skyler (Style Battle S1E6 Bracket B Semifinal Tournament Match)

Feeling out early, testing each other and stalemating until Case pulls ahead with a side headlock. Skyler using the ropes as an ally, trapping Ethan against them and ramming him into them, throwing sentons but he goes to the well one too many times and the knees go up. Back suplex to a waistlock, Case taking it slow and steady and trying to grind John out here.

Abdominal stretch, Southern Savior using the laces of Ethan's boots for leverage to break and he's met with hard strikes in return. Blue Thunder Driver's good for a nearfall, but Skyler gets a superkick off and both guys are down and out. To their feet, slugging it out, John ahead with charging blows, slingshot spear connects, only a nearfall!

Back and forth, Eat It connects... NOPE! Sidestep the charging knee, fireman's carry, the ribs give out but he gets Case up again and puts him down for two more, underhooks blocked with a catapult, the springboard Ace Crusher... NOT ENOUGH! Back rake, Tiger Driver into an STF! Ethan crawling, fighting, he needs to make the ropes and he does!

On the apron, trading chops, suplex denied and Case gets a shoulder thrust in while Skyler is busy trying to get the ref to lay off. Slingshot spear follows but Ethan has it scouted...

Ethan Case wins by pinfall with the Crash Landing.

Really good match, steadily built from feeling out to bombs in a really satisfying way, and the Crash Landing being used as a one-shot knockout makes a lot of sense the way Case/Day went.

Case is interviewed and says defeating somebody the caliber of John Skyler makes your mind start ticking. When he was laying there and heard the people chanting for Skyler, something clicked and he realized how truly confident he is between the ropes and that Ethan Case doesn't need WWN, WWN needs Ethan Case.

Caleb Konley vs. Fred Yehi (Style Battle S1E6 Bracket A Semifinal Tournament Match)

Intense grappling to start as they struggle over a wristlock and eventually stalemate. Switching to striking, Konley pulls ahead but regrets making the change after a huge chop from Yehi. Stomp to the foot, spinning double back chop, double stomp to the back, fired up, release German suplex connects and Caleb heads outside.

Off the ropes, baseball slide empty and Konley hits a knee before pressing the attack back in the ring and locking a bodyscissors on, looking to grind Fred down. Russian legsweep after the break, only a nearfall and Yehi's face fills with determination. Caleb cuts the rally off with some dirty tactics, raking and choking, but it's only worth a delay as Fred comes out hot, chopping away.

Double dropkick evens the playing field, fighting to the apron, Konley hits the moonsault to a rope-hung Yehi... NOT ENOUGH! Throwing a nuke, Konley counters with a powerbomb! Buckle bomb, but Yehi reverses the followup into a suplex into the turnbuckles! Release German suplex, nuke connects... only a nearfall!

Cravate knees, short-arm elbows, but Caleb ducks the rolling elbow and hits a backfist, and both men are out on the mat! Trading elbows to the face, Yehi ahead with chops, stomp to the foot, he's running low but Fred Yehi on E has a bigger tank than most guys off a fresh fill-up!

Into the corner, another German suplex, charging forearms, passing him aside, to the second but Konley catches him into the Michinoku Driver... NOT ENOUGH! Nobody home on the moonsault, chop block, dragging Caleb up for the reverse STO...

Fred Yehi wins by submission with the Koji Clutch.

Not a huge amount to say about that that the recap text doesn't state on its own, but a great match for sure. Finishing streak especially was thrilling.

Yehi is interviewed and says this is the night of Fred Yehi, but Case rolls up behind him and asks if he's in big trouble. He's actually very happy that Fred made Caleb Konley tap out, because when they leave the building tonight, everybody's gonna know the name Ethan Case because he beat WWN's MVP.

A short intermission ensues.

Dani J vs. Priscilla Kelly (Shine Showcase Match)

Kelly wasting no time, big boot into a back suplex... only one and that riles her right up! Strikes and chokes in the corner, Dani still well on the back foot but holding out remarkably well for someone who we're told only has seven months in the business. Front facelock clubbing blows, J gets a maneuver off, snapmare into a kick after some trash talk, off the ropes for a flipping cutter, also only a one count.

Forearm to a backfist from Kelly, a basement roundhouse gets a nearfall, underhooks blocked so she pivots and catches Dani with a half nelson suplex to a Russian legsweep...

Priscilla Kelly wins by submission with Trapped in Sin.

Pretty one-sided but good for what it was, especially considering the short length of Dani's career thus far. WWA4 trains 'em good and they train 'em fast!

AC Mack vs. Alan Angels vs. Ashton Starr vs. David Ali vs. James Bandy vs. Kavron Kanyon vs. Leon Ruff vs. Tony Midas (Eight-Man Mayhem)

Any time AR Fox's trainees have a big ol' scramble on a WWN card you know it's gonna be fast-paced and exciting and this is no different. Settling down into one-on-one sequences after intial chaos, super creative offense all around, and then we get to the bit where we head outside for crazy dives.

Ali with an elbow drop, Angels off the top with a double jump moonsault, Ruff gets cut off by Starr and Ashton hits a springboard plancha, but Leon finally comes back over with a corkscrew moonsault! Back in the ring Alan and Mack go at it, Kanyon in, Ruff, Angels holding court with a wicked domino effect standing shiranui on all three men!

Midas Touch (which is a neat full nelson Ace Crusher), Alan breaks it up, takes a half nelson driver for his trouble and Bandy runs in, catches Tony with a wicked Rock Bottom, sliding knee connects and Starr breaks it up! Neckbreaker into a superkick, Ashton climbs, moonsault, David breaks up the pin, crazy arm drag off the top... KAVRON PUTS A STOP TO IT!

Facewash dropkick, Pesticide Bomb, Mack in with a Meteora, Leon gets a straightjacket German off...

Leon Ruff wins by pinfall with a crucifix pin on AC Mack, earning a spot on Style Battle Season 1, Episode 7.

Scrambles are always fun, scrambles with AR Fox trainees are even more fun, good stuff.

Ethan Case vs. Fred Yehi (Style Battle S1E6 Finals)

Case stalling initially but the match quickly turns to striking, Yehi looking for the Koji Clutch early but Case knows he has to get out of town immediately. Back in, they pick back up with the strikes, Fred in charge, straight suplex, again Ethan heads outside, hoping to bait Yehi into letting himself get caught in the apron but to no avail.

Off the ropes, the springboard Ace Crusher connects... NOPE! But Case is in the fight again and wrenches at Fred's ear. Overhead elbow, hard whip, headbutt to the back, just looking for anything that might hurt the FIP World Heavyweight Champion. Waistlock takedown, pulling at the hair earns him stomps to the foot and repeated chops.

German suplex on German suplex, Ethan is a dead man, charging forearms in the corner but he gets cut off with a slap! Slip out of the Iconoclasm, Yehi follows the escape with a German suplex into the turnbuckles! Case reverses a fireman's carry into the Crash Landing, slow to capitalize... NOT ENOUGH!

Knee trembler, Fred catches a forearm, reverse STO, the Koji Clutch is on but Ethan is able to roll to the ropes! Yehi getting fired up, waiting for Case to get to his feet but he runs into a roll-through into the knee, Crash Landing.... FRED ROLLS OUTSIDE! He beats the count but Ethan throws him out the other side and puts him face-first into the wooden steps!

He beats the count by the slimmest of margins so Case takes him back outside and throws him into the support beam! AGAIN HE BEATS THE COUNT! Knee trembler connects, Ethan is yelling about how this is his time, he hooks Fred, Yehi slips out, reverse STO denied but the second try connects! The Koji Clutch is on in the middle of the ring! ETHAN CASE HAS NO CHOICE!

Fred Yehi wins by submission with the Koji Clutch, winning Style Battle Season 1 Episode 6!

This was excellent, and really elevated by the show-long stories building to it. Fred Yehi as the noble warrior who has a boundless reserve and just will not fall, Ethan Case as a guy who has a one hit KO maneuver in the Crash Landing but is increasingly willing to resort to underhanded tactics to make sure he can get to a point of hitting it, incredible stuff. A deeply satisfying pro wrestling match.

Yehi says the buck doesn't stop here, because yes he won Style Battle here, but he's seeking out more gold in Evolve and WWN and next Friday he's seeking the big guy, WALTER, for the Atlas gold! And tomorrow, Tracer X is indeed in big trouble because Fred is rolling, he's been FIP World Heavyweight Champion for over a year and he's not planning on stopping anytime soon.

Overall

A bit of a "sum is better than the (very good) parts" kind of situation, but another really good show from Style Battle all the same. Like, you know if you tune into Style Battle you're getting at a bare minimum several good matches and at least one great match, that's just a given at this point, but as I go over in my review segment for the finals, the show-long stories building TO those finals, well, they aren't always there or as crisp and clear as they are tonight. WWN really knocked this one out of the proverbial park...

...and with good timing, too, seeing as we just finished up the Anthony Henry arc. Ethan Case has a guaranteed spot in the next one thanks to making the finals this time, and it doesn't take Nostradamus to tell you that his willingness to do whatever it takes may well develop further.

Check it out on VOD on FloSlam, folks.