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PWX Rise of a Champion XII recap & review: Evans becomes iTV champion, Anthony Henry takes the crown, and the Space Cat is not OBSOLETE

Stream is live on the Highspots Wrestling Network with Corky Franks to welcome us to the show and then to Brad Stutts and Ethan Case on commentary. Ethan says that just because he's on the shelf and performing it doesn't mean we can't have a streamer party, and Brad runs down the double main event before getting right into the action!

Chip Day vs. Colby Corino vs. Darius Lockhart vs. Jason Cade vs. Tracer X vs. White Mike (Opportunity Knocks Ladder Match)

All five initially scheduled entrants make their entrance, introductions are made, and White Mike puts himself into the match!

Mike brings a ladder in the ring and climbs it before realizing he's afraid of heights and setting it down, whereupon he gets hit by kicks from everybody, finishing with Cade doing a Van Terminator with the ladder. Chaos proceeds to reign and the ring empties.

Corino's going for it but Day cuts him off and gets cut off by Jason in turn, who is then cut off by Lockhart. X catches him with a 540 roundhouse, tilt-a-whirl DDT. Colby takes Tracer out, Chip kicks the crap out of him and cuts Mike off when he finally comes back in.

Chip Day stands alone, tope con giro! Flying knee from Darius, big dive from Corino, followed up by one from Tracer! White Mike goes for the win and Cade knocks him off the ladder and brings a big one in. Lockhart uses a smaller ladder to stop him and whips him hard enough into it to break it!

Lockhart manhandles X onto Cade's shoulders, comes off the top for the Doomsday Device but X holds on and hits a poison Frankensteiner on Jason! Colby's feeling it but Chip gets in there and they struggle for a suplex over the fallen ladder. Day knee drops Corino's face into the ladder!

Chip sets the ladder up again but Mike comes from behind with a right hand and a pelvic thrust but it's always a mistake to trade strikes with Chip Day and White has to resort to the testicular claw to come out ahead! He's going to break it off! Facelock swing into a neckbreaker, he calls that the Can Opener!

Mike climbs the ladder slowly... DIVING CUTTER FROM CORINO! Colby climbs, Tracer comes from behind, wrist-clutch suplex off the ladder! Darius comes in again, flipping back suplex facebuster on the ladder! A ladder stretches from apron to guardrail, Lockhart is lying on it, Cade sets a ladder up... SPLASH FROM THE TOP OF THE LADDER ONTO DARIUS LOCKHART!

Jason climbing the ladder, he gets caught by Tracer X's springboard reverse STO! X to his feet, the crowd behind him, he almost has it when Chip Day pulls his legs through the ladder and climbs past him...

Chip Day wins by retrieving the contract for a match for any title, anytime, anywhere.

Awesome, awesome opener. I was super excited for this match based on the five guys announced initially, and not only did they deliver, but White Mike, in my first time seeing him, is great. Like a sleazy redneck Rick Rude, and that Can Opener!

Carnies (Kerry Awful & Nick Iggy) vs. the Revolt! (Caleb Konley & Zane Riley)

It had not occurred to me until I saw all four dudes in the ring together how much this would look like a real-life mirror match. Iggy and Konley to start, quick exchanges are the rule of the day until Riley tags in and Nick polls the crowd before tagging Awful in.

The big lads find themselves at a stalemate and their partners come in to clobber lariats, allowing Riley to tag charge and set the Carnies up for a double team sequence that nearly ends it. Tags made, Iggy running wild, basement cutter on Caleb, blows to the back of the head take Zane down but a scoop slam is countered into a black hole slam when Riley physically spins the pair of them around to reverse the momentum.

The Revolt! taking it to Nick Iggy in extended fashion now, until the Carny creates a malfunction at the junction and makes the tag. Kerry running wild, folding piledriver on Konley for a nearfall so it's Force Destroyer time but the Revolt! duck and break it up.

Death Valley Driver / quebrada combo gets them a nearfall but Nick comes in, ripcord Ace Crusher, bicycle kick, tries for another cutter but Zane elevates him for a combo backfist. Rock Bottom Go 2 Sleep variant from Awful and Iggy and Riley are trading blows soon after! Big men pounce one after the other, mat slam from Kerry... EARTHQUAKE SPLASH!

RILEY ESCAPES THE PIN BY JAMMING A THUMB UP KERRY'S BUTT! Like of the face, Awful fights out and tries to jam the thumb in Zane's mouth but nope. Goes for a flip piledriver but Riley counters by just sitting down, Earthquake style. Soon enough the Carnies have 'em set up... AVALANCHE FORCE DESTROYER!

Riley plays spoiler and wipes Iggy out cutting him off. Awful charges in, Konley hits a Blu-Ray, Zane with the cannonball! Caleb on the second...

The Revolt! win by pinfall with a double jump moonsault from Caleb Konley on Kerry Awful.

That was excellent. Just pure tag team fun and creativity bell-to-bell.

Seeming sportsmanship after the bell, but of course, the Revolt! are dicks and lay a beating on my poor Carnies, even to the point of hitting a Force Destroyer on them.

Referee Frankie Gastineau reverses the decision due to the assault!

The Tommy Thomas comes out, Timmy Lou Retton in tow. Tommy says that to understand the issue, you need to go back to the time of the Bubbas vs. the Hubbas. While one group got main event opportunities, the other were relegated to preshow matches and grunt work.

Elijah Evans IV gave him a call, and they got together with some other guys, but they were missing a crucial element. That was Mr. 500, the GOUGE Heavyweight Champion, Timmy Lou Retton.

Martin Stone comes to the ring! He gets on the mic and tells Timmy to shut his face, the stupid prat. He offers an apology, saying he was supposed to begin his journey to greatness in PWG last month, but he got a phone call to go wrestle in the WWE United Kingdom Championship, an opportunity he never thought he'd have.

That night, it didn't go his way, so his journey towards greatness under the banner of-- Tommy yanks the mic out of his hand and does his terrible English accent, whereupon Stone grabs him in his gentleman's area! Retton puts boots to him and the bell rings!

Martin Stone vs. Timmy Lou Retton

Things soon go outside and Martin takes charge, but back in the ring Timmy catches him wtih an enzuigiri that lays him out, shades of the United Kingdom Championship tournament. He fights to his feet but Retton puts boots to him, Thomas joining in, choking him of the ropes out of sight of the law.

Grinding the Englishman down now, choking him at points, but Stone gets back in it, throwing hands. Trading charging strikes, Martin catches him with the Ace Crusher but Retton has a spinebuster after to cut it off. Up top for the Swanton, Stone dodges it and throws Mr. 500 with a German suplex.

Sliding uppercut connects, Timmy Lou kicks out and Martin is ready with a crossface! Retton gets the ropes, hits a Stunner but can't finish it. Forearm for forearm, Retton pulls ahead with a whip but Stone catches him in the corner with a kick, exploder, and a knockout right sends him to the apron.

Chaining strikes together, charging in with an uppercut and Timmy Lou is knocked outside. Stone throws him back in and Retton throws slaps, jawing at him about how he's Mr. 500. Grab of the genitals to stun Retton, a headbutt, Martin gets him hung over the middle rope...

Martin Stone wins by pinfall with a rope-hung DDT.

Very good match. Especially loved the enzuigiri callback early, that sort of interpromotional continuity is always great. Plus this sort of escalating head damage story isn't something you see in a lot of matches.

Stone gets on the mic after to double dare Timmy Lou to put the GOUGE title on the line next time before asking him to piss off as a favor. He leads the crowd in serenading their departure and tells the crowd that they can join him on his journey under the PWX banner, starting tonight.

Elijah Evans IV vs. James Drake (c) (PWX iTV Championship)

Drake with a dive before the bell even rings! Sick Kick as soon as it does! NO GOOD!

Charges in with chops, he misses one and Evans catches him with a boot for his first nearfall and it is hot and heavy in the Cabarrus Arena! Back body drop into the bodyguards... JAMES DRAKE TOPE CON GIRO! Fighting outside, taking Elijah to the woodshed but a well-timed duck sends James' hand into the ringpost and turns the tide.

Down but not out, he hits that sweet pop-up apron haymaker and rolls Evans back in the ring. Champion punishing challenger corner to corner with chops, pop-up spinebuster gets a nearfall, senton, Drake up top for a moonsault but Evans rolls out of the way! Spear connects, Elijah going up top himself, diving elbow drop!

Disdainful slaps, James spits in his face, Evans going for a back suplex lift but Drake cus him off with a bite to the head. Off the ropes, the Blue Thunder Driver connects on a second try! Jockeying for position, the big man hits a big dropkick, strike rush gets two.

Big rolling elbow from the champion nearly ends it and he tells Evans he's going to teach his "bitch ass" not to put hands on him! Up top, Elijah cuts him off, Drake fights him off but Evans comes in with a big boot... MUSCLE BUSTER! NOT ENOUGH! Elijah has a sledgehammer and referee DA Brewer disposes of it.

Drill Bit connects, Drake has him pinned but Elijah's bodyguards are on the apron and Brewer has to stop them from interfering. Evans gets the belt and clobbers Drake with it...

Elijah Evans IV wins by pinfall with a lateral press, winning the PWX iTV Championship.

Booo! Seriously though, good match. I like Drake more every time I see him (can't wait for Style Battle S1E3!), and this Elijah Evans IV / Timmy Lou Retton, Tommy Thomas grouping is gonna lead to some interesting times in PWX.

Bruiserweights (Corey Hollis & John Skyler) vs. Ugly Ducklings (Lance Lude & Rob Killjoy) (c) (PWX Tag Team Championship)

The Ugly Ducklings' entrance includes a live rendition of their theme music, Coach Mikey wearing a terrifying lower body duck costume, and the champions riding an inflatable rubber duck to the ring.

A bit of stalling and strutting as the crowd chants, a feeling-out process plays out but after referee Kevin Pierce denies a tag, the Ducklings take charge on Hollis. Corey gets himself some space with a fireman's carry spinebuster and makes the tag. Skyler in hot, slamming Lude and Killjoy both and running uppercut trains on them.

Double spear, spear on the apron, spear coming back in the ring, Skyler follows with a Tiger Driver for a nearfall! Ducks come back on him, Lude chasing him on the outside but the inflatable duck comes into play! John rips its bill off! Chase around the ring, back inside, blind tag to Hollis, northern lariat!

Arm-trap elbow strikes into a reverse chinlock, Lude escapes but eats a dropkick immediately after and the Bruiserweights keep the pressure on. Lance gets himself some separation but Corey takes his head off with a wicked lariat in return. Going for a suplex, reversed to a small package so Skyler hangs him on the ropes.

Shotgun dropkick sends Lude to the apron, Rob wants to help but Pierce blocks him and Hollis and Skyler throw him into the barricade. Making a run of it, Hollis yanks Lance face-first to the apron but he's able to vault the barricade on a whip! The tag is made and Killjoy comes in with elbows, dropkicks and a wild dive.

Diving double stomp misses but the rolling elbow hits, snap back suplex, a stiff knee... NOT ENOUGH! He fends Hollis off with a knee and rolls Skyler up for two. Lude back in, tandem knees, Ducks stack 'em up, monkey flip cannonball! Skyler outside, moonsault from the apron but Coach Mikey catches him!

Hollis with a dive on both men, Skyler with the slingshot spear in the ring... NO GOOD! Hollis back in to run interference, chop block, John has an inverted figure four locked on but at the last second Lance pushes through Corey to break it up! Killjoy trying to whip Skyler but he's blocked, Finlay Roll, Hollis back in, diving headbutt... LUDE BREAKS IT UP WITH FRACTIONS OF A SECOND ON THE COUNT!

Slugging it out, Hollis blocks a rolling elbow by spitting in his face but it just fires Rob Killjoy up! O'Connor roll with so much of the tights that I could see what Killjoy had for breakfast, the Ducklings rally...

Ugly Ducklings win by pinfall with a Ducksday Device on John Skyler, retaining the PWX Tag Team Championship.

Very good match. Appreciate that we didn't get a lengthy "will they or won't they?" sequence with Hollis & Skyler getting on the same page after they laid all that out already. And some of those nearfalls late in the match, woo boy.

Corey Hollis, just as we're about to take an intermission, lays Skyler out with a lariat! He throws him out of the ring and into the camera man! Into the barricade now, then back in the ring as referees and security enforce some separation and we actually take our intermission.

Back from intermission and right back into the action!

Su Yung vs. Taeler Hendrix

Brawling early on the outside and up the entrance aisle as Hendrix chokes Yung over the barricade! Fighting in the crowd as the camera tries to follow, and when we cut to a good angle, Su is laid out on the floor. Taeler follows with a suplex, fighting into the seats and towards the barricade again.

Pillar to post beating continues, on the apron and against the barricade, Hendrix looking to use the belt as a weapon but Yung fights back and Taeler's trying to choke her by shoving stuff in her mouth, this is wild. The bloody bride lays her opponent out with a kick and sets up a chair for her, up on the apron but Taeler sweeps the leg out from under her!

Diving clothesline, the fighting moves to the apron, overhand chops and uppercuts, Su goes for a kick but gets her face planted in the apron by a trip. Knee to the midsection and Su is hurting as Hendrix makes a cover but only gets two. Yung in the corner, trying to maneuver for a headscissors but Taeler cuts her off with a kick.

Kicks miss, Yung has her up for an airplane spin, Hendrix escapes, arm wringer takedown, mule kick... Missed mist lays referee Frankie Gastineau out and chaos reigns as Taeler gets about a fifteen-count on a pin with him out of it. Su puts on a glove, applies a mandible claw, bodyscissors, the Purge is in...

Su Yung wins by submission with the Purge.

Add another super-fun Su Brawl to the tally, folks.

Anthony Henry vs. "Manscout" Jake Manning (c) (PWX World Heavyweight Champion)

Henry taking it to the mat immediately, picking a leg and trading holds with the champion. Extended jockeying for position and Manning catches him with a big right and seems poised to take control, but Anthony stays in it with a forearm and a straight suplex for two.

Trading chops now, Henry off the ropes for a suicide dive but the champion dodges and Amber Young takes the fall! Forearms in the aisle, Jake catches him hard against the apron and seems content to take a countout win. The Lethal Lover beats the count but on re-entry, the Manscout is on him, pummeling with forearms.

Up top for a fist drop as Brad Stutts drops a "He's gotta do it right meow", and I always pop for a bit of the meow game in unexpected circumstances. A dropkick sends the challenger out of the ring but champion takes him right back in to work the leg over.

Indian Deathlock applied, Manning falls back to increase the pressure. After the escape, disdainful slaps but Henry fires back and we have an exchange. Off the ropes, Anthony gets a scoop powerslam in, then strikes in the corner, Manning looking for a sunset flip, looking for the piledriver, but it's escaped.

Air Raid Crash gets two, looking for the Vertebreaker but Jake slips away, so he fires off a German suplex and a vertical brainbuster... NO GOOD! Champion busts out a wild sunset flip into the turnbuckles before hitting his backbreaker / reverse STO combo!

Struggle on the apron, the Manscout looking for a piledriver but Henry denies him it... AIR RAID CRASH ON THE APRON! VERTEBREAKER! NOT ENOUGH!

Slugging it out on the outside to follow, Henry slides under(!) the barricade to avoid it and they fight in the crowd. Anthony climbs up top... CANNONBALL DIVE TO THE OUTSIDE!

Back in the ring, Henry back up top but Jake blocks him and climbs to meet him. Butterfly superplex connects but the champion is hard-pressed to capitalize and can't end it. Caleb Konley yanks the referee out of the ring and the Revolt! hit the ring to beat champion and challenger down alike!

Riley gets on the mic to say that if you don't put them in the main event, they'll put themselves in the main event, and Konley punctuates it with a chairshot to Henry! The Revolt! leave, Manning hooks him, deadlift piledriver... ANTHONY HENRY LIVES!

Henry with a small package, not enough, so they go back to slugging it out, wobbling on their feet. Off the ropes, spinebuster, rope-hung piledriver... STILL NOT ENOUGH! He goes for it again but Henry has his wits about him...

Anthony Henry wins by pinfall with a jackknife pin, winning the PWX World Heavyweight Championship!

Excellent match. Henry fighting and scraping to beat the "X16 curse", Manning the wily veteran who never expected to be champion and isn't gonna give it up without a fight... even those assholes the Revolt! fulfilled good narrative purpose here.

Jeff Hardy vs. Sami Callihan (Falls Count Anywhere)

Aw man, no Space Cat. Jeff Hardy is handing out CDs like he's Toru Yano's less profit-minded cousin, though, so that's cool.

Callihan clobbers him with a dive before the bell rings! Hardy pushes the fight out into the crowd and against the bleachers! Fighting over by the loading doors now, Sami throws a chair in Jeff's face but eats some kind of huge flying object in return himself.

Callihan with the big running boot as we finally get a camera angle where I can see more than the fringes of the action for a second. Over by the merch tables for the head start, Sami charges around the entire damn arena but Hardy catches him! More chaos, Callihan with a powerbomb through a table!


Callihan throws Brother Nero over the barricade and into the entrance aisle, Jeff is down and out and gets thrown back in the ring. Sami polls the crowd by voilume and goes for plunder, yanking a trash can out from under the ring and chasing it with a kendo stick.

But when he goes to capitalize, Hardy's up and fighting, throwing forearms. The kendo stick serves as equalizer and a cocky Callihan goes for a Twist of Fate. Jeff slips out, looking for one of his own, Sami slips out, both men clothesline each other!

Trading punches, Callihan wins the exchange but gets caught with a neckbreaker off the ropes for two. Sami in with the corner facewash, but when he goes for a second Hardy runs him over. Whisper in the Wind connects... NOPE! The Charismatic Enigma gets a table to follow it up but the Death Machine blocks the setup.

Low dropkick, Jeff puts the trash can on the Space Cat and clobbers him with the kendo stick. Sami fights back IN THE TRASHCAN, throwing assisted headbutts before hitting a running DVD into the steel! He sets Hardy up on the table and clobbers him with the can again.

Callihan climbs the turnbuckles but Jeff wakes up and cuts him off. Looking for a superplex, Sami out with headbutts and a bite, looking for a sunset flip powerbomb but Hardy holds on, so Sami switches to a fireman's carry. Jeff slips out, two Twists of Fate and Callihan's on the table as one leg collapses!

Jeff heads up top, crossbody through the table... NO GOOD! Back up, Swanton... THE KNEES ARE UP! Kick to the gut, thumbs down...

Sami Callihan wins by pinfall with a Twist of Fate!

Good fun brawl, although the camera work at the beginning was an issue. Hopefully they have a better angle for the VOD when it goes up!

Sami gets on the mic and says that tonight was something special. If it wasn't for the Hardyz, guys like him wouldn't be here, and fourteen year old Sami Callihan would be jumping for joy that he got to get in the ring with one of his biggest influences, and he thanks Jeff from the bottom of his heart.

People keep asking him why he quit WWE, he had his dream job. Friday he was in Chicago, Saturday he was in LA and he killed it, and today he hopped on a red-eye, got here thirty minutes into the show, and killed it. Independent wrestling IS wrestling, and he doesn't do this often, but he's gonna put his hand out and thank Jeff.

Hardy shakes his hand, they hug, and he raises Sami's hand.

Anthony Henry comes back out, title in hand. He tells Sami that he agrees with everything he said and adds that he can't believe that Jeff Hardy is in a PWX ring and collects a handshake himself. He tells Sami that he beat Jeff Hardy at his own game and while he did that, the title Henry holds makes him the man.

Early last year, they did this once before, and they set the PWX Nation on fire. If we're down, and Sami's down, now that he has the title, he wants to do it one more time. Callihan gets up and offers a hand, promising not to jump him. They shake hands, and Sami says he'll see him next month.

But right now he doesn't feel like fighting, he feels like partying with the PWX crowd. He knows what we all want, and invites Jeff Hardy to sing.

Jeff gets on the mic to talk about this being a great experience and talks about two tables being deleted. And furthermore, he knows why Sami left WWE, it's because WWE sucks and this is pro wrestling at its best. He does a false start singing "the album version" before leading the crowd in a few choruses of "you'll fade away and classify yourselves as OBSOLETE" to close the show.


Great show from PWX, very much worthy of being the biggest show in their calendar. Henry/Manning was superlative, both tag matches and the ladder match were awesome, all the other matches were at least good, and we got plenty of story/angle movement, both with Elijah Evans IV and his group and with the Revolt!

So check it out when the VOD goes up on Highspots shortly, folks.

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