Welcome back to the Sermon on the Mat, your weekly one-stop shop for news from the wider world of wrestling beyond the big cable TV monoliths that get all the coverage.
MLW War Games (Sept. 6, 7PM Eastern)
- Brian Pillman, Jr. vs. Vandal Ortagun
- Jason Cade vs. Myron Reed
- El Hijo de LA Park vs. Jimmy Yuta
- ACH vs. Davey Boy Smith, Jr.
- Aria Blake & Maxwell Jacob Friedman vs. Joey Ryan & Taya Valkyrie
- Brody King vs. Pierre Carl Ouellet
- Rich Swann vs. Teddy Hart
- Joey Janela vs. Tom Lawlor
- LA Park vs. Pentagon, Jr.
- Low-Ki (c) vs. Rey Fenix (MLW World Heavyweight Championship)
- Abyss, Death Machines (Leon Scott & Madman Fulton), Jimmy Havoc, & Sami Callihan vs. Barrington Hughes, Kotto Brazil, John Hennigan, Shane Strickland, & Tommy Dreamer (War Games Match)
MLW are in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and bringing hell with them, folks. Yes, they’re doing the full-on classic-style War Games match-- two rings, one cage, staggered entry, and the Match Beyond, and look at the lineup they’re doing it with! Beautifull symmetric, with each team having two up-and-comers, two featured stars, and one absolute hardcore legend, it’s gonna be a bloodbath of the best kind.
And that’s even without looking at the stacked undercard-- what would normally be a double main event of Park/Penta and Ki/Fenix is a great start, but to single out a less obvious match, ACH vs. Davey Boy could be a really special flyer vs. grappler/power guy matchup, between how DBS tends to lean into his grappling chops a little more in singles action and ACH’s selling has been absolutely on point this year.
CMLL Super Viernes (Sept. 7, 9:30PM Eastern)
- Hijo del Signo & Metalico vs. Pegasso & Principe Diamante
- Chamuel, Mije, & Zakarias el Perico vs. El Gallito, Guapito, & Microman
- Dalys vs. Reyna Isis (Lightning Match)
- Dragon Rojo, Jr., Hechicero, & Templario vs. Esfinge, Titan, & Triton
- Atlantis, LA Park, & Mistico vs. Gilbert el Boricua, Mephisto, & Negro Casas
- Barbaro Cavernario & Los Ingobernables (Bestia del Ring & Rush) vs. Caristico, Matt Taven, & Volador, Jr.
CMLL are back in Arena Mexico for your weekly Friday night dose of lucha libre action from the oldest dedicated wrestling venue in the world and we’ve got another big defection from AAA this week as Gilbert el Boricua debuts alongside Mephisto and Negro Casas against a bang-up squad of technicos made up of Atlantis, LA Park, and Mistico. And who is Gilbert el Boricua, you ask? You may know him better as Ricky Banderas or El Mesias, but you probably know him best as Lucha Underground’s Mil Muertes!
Check it out, as always, free for nothin’ on Marca Claro, folks.
PCW Ultra Vision Quest (Sept. 7, 8:30PM Pacific)
- Jake Atlas vs. Maxx Stardom vs. Puma King
- ACH vs. Daga
- Brody King vs. Eddie Kingston
- Diamante vs. Tessa Blanchard (c) (PCW Ultra World Women’s Championship)
- Reno SCUM (Adam Thornstowe & Luster the Legend) vs. Warbeast (Fatu & Josef) (c) (PCW Ultra World Tag Team Championship)
- Rey Horus vs. Shane Strickland (c) (PCW Ultra World Light Heavyweight Championship)
- Hammerstone vs. Penta el Zero M (c) (PCW Ultra World Heavyweight Championship)
PCW Ultra are back in Wilmington, California with seven dynamite matches for your this Friday, folks. There’s a little bit of everything on display here, from an international dream match like ACH/Daga, to the brawling action of King/Kingston, to top shelf high flying in Horus/Strickland, to the main event’s hungry up-and-comer vs. international veteran action!
RPW Brawl at the Guildhall / British J Cup 2018 (Sept. 7 - 9)
—Brawl at the Guildhall (Sept. 7, 6:30PM GMT)—
- Bandido vs. Flamita
- Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis) & El Phantasmo vs. Roppongi 3K (Rocky Romero, SHO, & YOH)
- Josh Bodom vs. Kip Sabian
- KUSHIDA vs. Kurtis Chapman
- Colt Cabana vs. David Starr
—British J Cup Night One (Sept. 8, 5PM GMT)—
- Bandido vs. El Phantasmo (British J Cup First Round Match)
- Kurtis Chapman vs. Rocky Romero (British J Cup First Round Match)
- Dean Allmark vs. SHO (British J Cup First Round Match)
- Ryusuke Taguchi vs. YOH (British J Cup First Round Match)
- Flamita vs. Rich Swann (British J Cup First Round Match)
- Chris Ridgeway vs. KUSHIDA (British J Cup First Round Match)
- Jushin Liger vs. Kyle Fletcher (British J Cup First Round Match)
- David Starr vs. Tiger Mask IV (British J Cup First Round Match)
- CCK (Chris Brookes & Jonathan Gresham) vs. Ringkampf (Timothy Thatcher & WALTER)
—British J Cup Night Two (Sept. 9, 1PM GMT)—
- British J Cup Quarterfinals, Semifinals, & Finals
RevPro are back and holy hell just look at that tournament lineup, folks! Not only do you have an absolute all-star cast of junior heavyweights and a dream match tag between the original CCK and Ringkampf, but these are actually only days 3-5 of a jam-packed wrestling week for RevPro, seeing as they kicked the action off with a two-day international TV taping, starting on Wednesday. (Which is why the taping didn’t make it here, for the record-- it essentially fell into the crack between weeks.)
AAW Seize the Day (Sept. 8, 7PM Central)
- Hooligans (Devin & Mason Cutter) vs. Kody Rice & Mike Hartenbower
- PACO vs. Stephen Wolf
- Bucky Collins vs. Joey Ryan
- DJ Z vs. Myron Reed
- ACH vs. Eddie Kingston
- Besties in the World (Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett) vs. Rascalz (Dezmond Xavier & Zachary Wentz)
- Jake Crist vs. Jimmy Jacobs (Street Fight)
AAW are back in LaSalle, Illinois, and thanks to the shakeups last weekend, two title defenses are clean off the board! ACH was originally supposed to defend the heavyweight title against Kingston, and Besties in the World were to defend the tag titles against the Rascalz but now both of those contests are vanilla matches with nothing but pride and positioning in the division on the line.
CZW Down With the Sickness (Sept. 8, 8PM Eastern)
- Brandon Kirk vs. Max Caster
- Alex Reynolds vs. John Silver (Chris Ca$h Memorial Ladder Match)
- Conor Claxton vs. Mance Warner (MJF Opportunity At an Opportunity Tournament Semifinal Match)
- Joe Gacy vs. Rickey Shane Page (MJF Opportunity At an Opportunity Tournament Semifinal Match)
- BLKOUT (BLK Jeez & Ruckus) vs. the REP (Dave McCall & Nate Carter) (c) (CZW World Tag Team Championship)
- MJF Opportunity At an Opportunity Tournament Finals
CZW are back in Voorhees, New Jersey, and is there any idea more MJF than a tournament in his absence to crown a number one contender to his CZW World Heavyweight Championship that’s billed as getting an opportunity at an opportunity? I submit there is not. That’s not the only opportunity on the line, however, as the winner of Reynolds/Silver will get a shot down the line as well, plus the REP take on CZW legends BLKOUT in the tag title match!
Dropkick Depression Born to Fight II (Sept. 8, 7PM Eastern)
- Beefcake Charlie vs. Mike Oridge vs. Razerhawk vs. Steve Scott vs. Super Beetle vs. Thomas Brewington (Scramble Match)
- Adira vs. Faye Jackson vs. Riley Shepard
- Breakfast Club (CPA & Francis Kip Stevens) vs. Brotein Pack (Mike C-Way & TJ Blade)
- ”Supercop” Dick Justice vs. Lucas Calhoun
- Jacob Tarasso vs. Wheeler YUTA
- Jeff Cannonball vs. Mr. Zero
- 20-Person Battle Born Royale
- Big Hair, Bigger Dino (Terra Calaway & Willow Nightingale) vs. Spectral Envoy (Frightmare & Ultramantis Black)
Dropkick Depression is back in Old Bridge, New Jersey with their now-annual blowout show to benefit the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and not only do you get to support a good cause, you get a good card featuring a lot of up-and-comers from the east coast. Jeff Cannonball takes on Chikara original Mr. Zero, Terra Calaway and Willow Nightingale team against two-thirds of the Spectral Envoy, Dick Justice and Lucas Calhoun, a twenty-person battle royal, and more!
And y’all know I love these kinds of shows with this sheer volume of new-to-me talent, because one of the best parts of indie wrestling is tuning into a show where you don’t know 2/3s of the wrestlers on the card and making new favorites.
Shine 53 (Sept. 8, 3PM Eastern)
- Allysin Kay vs. Brandi Lauren (Shine Championship Tournament First Round Match)
- Mercedes Martinez vs. Stormie Lee (Shine Championship Tournament First Round Match)
- Priscilla Kelly vs. Santana Garrett (Shine Championship Tournament First Round Match)
- Candy Cartwright vs. Ivelisse (Shine Championship Tournament First Round Match)
- Cutie Pie Club (Dementia D’Rose & Kiera Hogan) vs. Twisted Sisterz (Holidead & Thunder Rosa) (c) (Shine Tag Team Championship)
- Shine Championship Tournament Semifinals & Finals
Shine are back in New York City as part of a big triple-header weekend with Evolve (more on the Evolve shows in my dedicated preview coming soon, naturally) and they’re holding an eight-woman tournament to crown a new Shine Champion after previous and longest-reigning champion LuFisto had to vacate the title due to illness. The irony is she’s already recovered and wrestling again elsewhere, so whoever wins the title had best be ready for the Wounded Owl to return and lay claim to her title once more!
Free matches here!
+Lucha & Chill: MDA, Coliseo de Monterrey
The good folks over at +LuchaTV on YouTube have started streaming whole shows, and so I figured why not feature one here? This one has Emperador Azteca vs. Laredo Kid, Daga vs. Rey Horus, Hijo de LA Park vs. Mr. Electro, and a main event of Blue Demon, Jr. vs. LA Park, so check it out!
Air Wolf vs. PACO vs. Shane Strickland
From the fine folks over at Glory Pro, we’ve got a high flyin’ three-way for y’all, featuring current Evolve World Champion Shane Strickland and 2018 Rey de Voladores winner Air Wolf dancing alongside Glory Pro mainstay PACO. Don’t miss it!
Ryder Reid vs. TKD vs. Wes Barkley vs. Zack Thomas
From the good folks over at AIW, we’ve got a four-way featuring some of the freshest students their school has to offer, and as always, a perfect opportunity to find some new favorites. Enjoy!
AAW Destination: Chicago / Defining Moment (Aug. 30 / 31)
—Destination: Chicago (Aug. 30)—
- WRSTLING (David Starr & Eddie Kingston) over Besties in the World (Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett) (c) to win the AAW Tag Team Championship
- PACO over Stephen Wolf
- Zema Ion over Laredo Kid and Myron Reed
- Trevor Lee (c) over Ace Romero to retain the AAW Heritage Championship
- Curt Stallion & Jake Something over OI4K (Dave & Jake Crist)
- Brody King & Jimmy Jacobs over Death Machines (Jessicka Havok & Sami Callihan)
- Maxwell Jacob Friedman over Colt Cabana
- ACH (c) over Jeff Cobb to retain the AAW Heavyweight Championship
—Defining Moment (Aug. 31)—
- Curt Stallion & Jake Something over Ace Romero & Colt Cabana
- Shane Strickland over Darby Allin
- Jessicka Havok over Cruise & Steve Manders (Handicap Match)
- OI4K (Dave & Jake Crist) over Ace Austin & Brian Cage
- AR Fox & Myron Reed over Bandido & Flamita
- Maxwell Jacob Friedman over Marko Stunt
- Sami Callihan over Jimmy Jacobs
- WRSTLING (Eddie Kingston & Jeff Cobb) (c) over Besties in the World (Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett) to retain the AAW Tag Team Championship
- Brody King over ACH (c) to win the AAW Heavyweight Championship
A big double-header for AAW here and there’s a lot to unpack so let’s jump right in, shall we? WRSTLING had a mixed bag, winning the tag titles to kick things off and retaining the Heritage Championship, but ACH prevailed in the next step of his quest to defeat each member in turn by successfully defending the heavyweight title against Jeff Cobb. It wasn’t all sunshine for one half of the Troll Boyz, however, as Brody King managed to end his title reign in the main event of Defining Moment.
Also on Defining Moment was a Callihan/Jacobs brawl that went all over the building and got so out of hand that at one point venue staff got on the PA and requested they stop destroying chairs!
Chikara King of Trios 2018 (Aug. 31 - Sept. 2)
—Night One (Aug. 31)—
- Ancient Order of the Nations (Adam Hoffman, Jack Bonza, & Mick Moretti) over Xyberhawx Techno Union (Danjerhawk, Nytehawk, & Razerhawk) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- The ResistANTce (Fire, Green II, & Thief Ant) over Dark Lords of the Proteus (Callux the Castigator, Frantik, & Volgar) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- Nexus Alliance (Fred Rosser, Michael Tarver, & “Darewolf” PJ Black) over the Regime (Juan Francisco de Coronado, Rick Roland, & Sloan Caprice) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- Raiders of the Beyond (Brian Milonas, Cam Zagami, & Chris Dickinson) over Millenium Throwbacks (Boomer Hatfield, Dasher Hatfield, & “Mr. Touchdown” Mark Angelosetti) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- Ohnaka Gang (Katarina Leigh, Pierre Carl Ouellet, & Rey Bucanero) over Society of the Deep (Cajun Crawdad, Hermit Crab, & Merlok) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- FIST Order (Icarus, Tony Deppen, & Travis Huckabee) over Galactic Wildlife Commission (Air Wolf, ThunderFrog, & Wildcat) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- New Republic (El Hijo del Ice Cream, Ice Cream, Jr, & Kikutaro) over Sisters of the Mighty (Aja Perera, Molly Holly, & Solo Darling) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
- Tokyo Joshi Freedom Fighters (Miyu Yamashita, Shoko Nakajima, & Yuka Sakazaki) over Shimmer Collective (Jessica Troy, Madison Eagles, & Shazza McKenzie) (King of Trios 2018 First Round Match)
—Night Two (Sept. 1)—
- Air Wolf over Cam Carter, Carlos Romo, and Razerhawk (Rey de Voladores 2018 First Round Match)
- Ancient Order of the Nations (Adam Hoffman, Jack Bonza, & Mick Moretti) over Ohnaka Gang (Katarina Leigh, Pierre Carl Ouellet, & Rey Bucanero) (King of Trios 2018 Quarterfinal Match)
- Blanche Babish, Jeremy Leary, Jessica Troy, Lucas Calhoun, & Shazza McKenzie over BLANK & Creatures of the Deep (Cajun Crawdad, Hermit Crab, Merlok, & Oceanea)
- Tokyo Joshi Freedom Fighters (Miyu Yamashita, Shoko Nakajima, & Yuka Sakazaki) over New Republic (El Hijo del Ice Cream, Ice Cream, Jr, & Kikutaro) (King of Trios 2018 Quarterfinal Match)
- A-Kid over Danjerhawk, Facade, and Ophidian (Rey de Voladores 2018 First Round Match)
- Raiders of the Beyond (Brian Milonas, Cam Zagami, & Chris Dickinson) over Nexus Alliance (Fred Rosser, Michael Tarver, & “Darewolf” PJ Black) (King of Trios 2018 Quarterfinal Match)
- Solo Darling over Madison Eagles
- The ResistANTce (Fire, Green II, & Thief Ant) over FIST Order (Icarus, Tony Deppen, & Travis Huckabee) (King of Trios 2018 Quarterfinal Match)
—Night Three (Sept. 2)—
- The ResistANTce (Fire, Green II, & Thief Ant) over Raiders of the Beyond (Brian Milonas, Cam Zagami, & Chris Dickinson) (King of Trios 2018 Semifinal Match)
- Ancient Order of the Nations (Adam Hoffman, Jack Bonza, & Mick Moretti) over Tokyo Joshi Freedom Fighters (Miyu Yamashita, Shoko Nakajima, & Yuka Sakazaki) (King of Trios 2018 Semifinal Match)
- The Whisper over Carlos Romo
- Beast Warriors (Oleg the Usurper & Proletariat Boar of Moldova) over Aja Perera & Solo Darling, Blanche Babish & Jeremy Leary, Cornelius Crummels & Sonny Defarge, Dez Peloton (Donald Kluger & Jasper Tippins), Jessica Troy & Shazza McKenzie, Legion of Rot (Frightmare & Hallowicked), Nouveau Aesthetic (Still Life With Apricots and Pears & Ursa Minor in the Night Sky), Proteus Wheel (Callux the Castigator & Volgar), and ThunderFrog & Wildcat (10-Team Gauntlet Match)
- Madison Eagles over “Lightning” Mike Quackenbush
- Air Wolf over A-Kid (Rey de Voladores 2018 Finals)
- The ResistANTce (Fire, Green II, & Thief Ant) over Ancient Order of the Nations (Adam Hoffman, Jack Bonza, & Mick Moretti) (King of Trios 2018 Finals)
The Colony that once seemed moribund stands atop the mountain in Chikara once again! And how about that shocking deep run from the Aussie lads all the way to the finals, eh? Plus, at long last, it happened-- trainer vs. student, learner vs. master, Madison Eagles vs. “Lightning” Mike Quackenbush! It wasn’t all good and exciting news coming out of these shows, unfortunately, as newly-crowned Grand Champion Mark Angelosetti broke his leg on night one.
Check it out on Chikaratopia, folks.
Progress: Germany (Aug. 31 - Sept. 2)
—Hamburg (Aug. 31)—
- The 198 (“Flash” Morgan Webster & Wild Boar) over Grizzled Young Veterans (James Drake & Zack Gibson) (Thunderbastard Tag Team Series)
- Chief Deputy Dunne over Fred Yehi
- Timothy Thatcher over TK Cooper
- Killer Kelly over Alpha Female and Jinny
- WALTER (c) vs. Chris Brookes went to a no-contest (Progress World Championship)
- Chris Brookes, David Starr, & WALTER over A4 (Absolute Andy & Marius Al-Ani) & Bobby Gunns
—Oberhausen (Sept. 1)—
- Mark Davis over David Starr
- Anti-Fun Police (Chief Deputy Dunne & Los Federales Santos, Jr.) over M&M (Connor Mills & Maverick Mayhew) (Thunderbastard Tag Team Series)
- James Drake over Fred Yehi and Kyle Fletcher
- British Strong Style (Pete Dunne, Trent Seven, & Tyler Bate) over RISE (Ivan Kiev, Lucky Kid, & Pete Bouncer)
- Jinny (c) over Killer Kelly to retain the Progress Women’s Championship
- The 198 (“Flash” Morgan Webster & Wild Boar) over Chris Brookes & Timothy Thatcher (Thunderbastard Tag Team Series)
- WALTER (c) over Zack Gibson to retain the Progress World Championship
—Frankfurt (Sept. 2)—
- Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis) over M&M (Connor Mills & Maverick Mayhew) (Thunderbastard Tag Team Series)
- Doug Williams over Emil Sitoci
- Chris Brookes & Timothy Thatcher over Anti-Fun Police (Chief Deputy Dunne & Los Federales Santos, Jr.) (Thunderbastard Tag Team Series)
- Zack Gibson over Lucky Kid
- Jinny (c) over Kris Wolf to retain the Progress Women’s Championship
- British Strong Style (Pete Dunne, Trent Seven, & Tyler Bate) over Avalanche & the 198 (“Flash” Morgan Webster & Wild Boar)
At long last, the road to Wembley is clear. There are no more roadblocks, no more exits to turn off on, just straight sailing until we hit the day. The order of entry for the Thunderbastard is set, with tag champions Bandido & Flamita entering first alongside Sexy Starr (David Starr & Jack Sexsmith, whose absence from these Germany shows was due to a family emergency), followed by M&M, Aussie Open, Anti-Fun Police, Grizzled Young Vets, Brookes & Thatcher, and the 198, in that order.
And indeed, the Wembley card itself is taking clearer and clearer form, with Jimmy Havoc vs. Paul Robinson in a no DQ match, Mark Haskins vs. Matt Riddle, and Eddie Dennis vs. Mark Andrews in a TLC match added in the last few days.
Check ‘em out when they hit Demand Progress, folks.
ALL IN (Sept. 1)
- SoCal Uncensored (Frankie Kazarian & Scorpio Sky) over the Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe)
- Flip Gordon over Austin Gunn, Billy Gunn, Brandon Cutler, Brian Cage, Bully Ray, Cheeseburger, Chuckie T, Colt Cabana, “All Ego” Ethan Page, Hurricane Helms, Jimmy Jacobs, Jordynne Grace, Marko Stunt, Moose, Punishment Martinez, Rocky Romero, Tommy Dreamer, & Trent? to become #1 contender to the ROH World Championship (Over Budget Battle Royal)
- Matt Cross over Maxwell Jacob Friedman
- Christopher Daniels over Stephen Amell
- Tessa Blanchard over Britt Baker, Chelsea Green, and Madison Rayne
- Cody Rhodes over Nick “Magnus” Aldis (c) to win the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship
- Hangman Page over Joey Janela (Chicago Street Fight)
- ”Black Machismo” Jay Lethal (c) over Flip Gordon to retain the ROH World Championship
- Kenny Omega over Pentagon, Jr.
- Kazuchika Okada over Marty Scurll
- Golden Elite (Kota Ibushi, Matt Jackson, & Nick Jackson) over Bandido, Rey Fenix, & Rey Mysterio, Jr.
For full details of what went down you can check out our full-service liveblog, so I won’t try to round all the details up here, but suffice it to say, All In was an absolute success on almost every level, from the quality of matches like Penta/Omega and the main event to the emotion of Cody Rhodes winning the title held by his father, the American Dream Dusty Rhodes.
Remember folks, no matter what type of wrestling you like, no matter how down you feel about the state of WWE, Impact, ROH, or any other “big-time” pro wrestling, there’s something out there for you. There’s a pro wrestling product that can hit you in the right spot and make you love wrestling like you thought you’d never be able to love it again. It’s there, I promise. You just gotta reach out and find it, and that, my friends, is what the Sermon on the Mat is all about.