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Progress Super Strong Style 16 2017 Day One recap & review: The quarter-finals are set

Demand Progress

Progress Chapter 49: Super Strong Style 16 2017 Day 1 went up on Demand Progress this afternoon, so let's dig in!

Jeff Cobb vs. Nathan Cruz (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Feeling out early, Cobb starts tossing Cruz around but the first Progress Champion ain't having it and he takes the Olympian outside to work him over. Back in, Nathan puts Jeff into the ringposts repeatedly, Cobb creates an opening with the Athletic-Plex! Following it up, lariat and dropkick, back suplex, standing moonsault, standing shooting star headbutt... NO GOOD!

Cruz making a rally, enzuigiri, forearm, slingshot back suplex takes the bigger man down but it's only good for two. Struggle over a sunset flip, waistlocks exchanged, big rolling German suplexes from the Olympian but Nathan grabs the ref and hits a low blow, Codebreaker... NOT ENOUGH!

Pop-up German suplex sets it up...

Jeff Cobb wins by pinfall with Tour of the Islands.

Solid opener-- I was very mildly worried it'd be sluggish because Nathan Cruz matches tend to run long and Cobb has been a bit low energy in Evolve, but they went out there and had a good solid match that got out at the exact right time.

Mark Haskins vs. "Flash" Morgan Webster (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Grappling early, Haskins going right after the previously injured ankle. Webster with an imploding senton atomico but Mark stays on the leg, kicking and wrenching, shinbreaker, Flash trying to fight back but Haskins is right back on him. Hanging Morgan's leg in the ropes now, but Webster hits the ropes and, skipping steps with the bad knee, mounts a comeback with knees and dropkick.

Outside, feint dives give way to real, a moonsault in the ring comes up empty and begets the bridging Fujiwara armbar! Throwing kicks now, Flash back with a knee, Haskins again goes low with a kick and rolls through for the Death Valley Driver, Webster counters to the Strangler!

Mark escapes and they shift to slugging it out, forearm for forearm, slap for slap on their knees and to their feet. Haskins with a roundhouse kick off the ropes, Webster with a headbutt that staggers him but Mark is back with the roll-through DVD and a superkick for a nearfall!

Pumphandle, Flash fighting, reverses to a crucifix, only two, another knee, Eton Rifle slipped out of, Haskins rolls through...

Mark Haskins wins by submission with the Sharpshooter.

Good match. Really enjoyed the first part where Haskins was all about working on the leg, then that thread got lost and it wasn't quite as good but still an enjoyable wrestling match.

Post-match, Haskins and Webster jaw at and shove each other a bit before making up and shaking hands.

Jimmy Havoc vs. Travis Banks (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Music changes are a necessary part of growth and all, but man I don't think I'll ever get over losing I Hope You Suffer for Jimmy.

Electric standoff to huge dueling chants, Banks is right in, keeping it mat-based as Havoc reminds us all that he can play that game just as well as anybody. Travis boots him out of the ring after a bird, in and out, suicide dive, brawling outside! Jimmy pulls ahead, back into the apron, but Banks won't let him keep it, throwing him like six rows into the crowd!

Havoc back hard, chair in hand, he throws it and Travis just walks through it with a forearm! Again! A third and Banks catches it, throwing it into the King of the Goths' face to no effect! Havoc throwing Banks into the crowd himself now, Travis back hard with forearms and kicks!

Back in the ring, charging strikes, Jimmy dodges Slice of Heaven, to the second, Frankensteiner, up and over, forearm smash, flip piledriver... NOPE! Acid Rainmaker dodged, Banks with the superkick into the cannonball, only a nearfall. Suicide dive cut off with a forearm, but when Travis goes to climb to capitalize, Jimmy meets him with an avalanche Frankensteiner!

Trading slaps on their knees, to their feet, boot, trip, Banks with the Busaiku Knee Kick! Slice of Heaven ducked again, pumphandle powerbomb, only a nearfall for Havoc! Rolling elbow, half and half suplex, Death Valley Driver, elbow right to the back of the neck, Jimmy's on a roll, he grabs the wristlock, Banks goes behind, Blue Thunder Driver... NO GOOD!

Throwing forearms, Havoc back in with a pair of rolling elbows, thinking Acid Rainmaker, Travis keeps blocking with kicks! Trading kicks in the wristlock, Banks kicks his head in...

Travis Banks wins by pinfall with Kiwi Krusher.

Really good match, from the atmosphere to the brawling to the bombs. Love the finish, too-- after Slice of Heaven fails a few times, Travis just had enough, keeps the wristlock from the Acid Rainmaker that, had it ever hit, would have ended the match, kicks his head in and drops him on it. Brilliant.

Afterwards, Havoc refuses a handshake and flips the bird, but raises the hand anyway, because that's the kind of guy he is.

David Starr vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Intense grappling from the jump, each man trying to find an opening to exploit. Starr finds one, trippling Sabre up, but he goes for an arm-trap pin and can't keep it. Big chop lays Sabre low, so David keeps pushing, throwing chop after chop, Zack rallying, returning uppercuts, tilt-a-whirl slam from Starr leaves them at an impasse.

Off the ropes, he makes the Technical Wizard look at it! That was, as it turns out, a mistake, because ZSJ's eyes are fire and he plants Starr into the mat with an arm wringer! Spinning armbar, stomping like mad at the arm, stepping on his head to go after the arm, looking for an armbar but the Jewish Cannon keeps his hands locked and fights out.

Sabre literally stomps him through the ropes before hanging the arm up for another. Back inside, working on a wristlock, Jim Breaks Special and Starr breaks with a rolling elbow. In with chops and forearms, fighting one-handed, but ZSJ clobbers him with an uppercut off the ropes. Still in it, boot and an elbow into Product Recall, only two!

Zack with a guillotine choke, trying for the Kimura lock but Starr blocks, Sabre picks the ankle, takedown, Penalty Kick! A second... NOPE! King of Taunts very much still in it, trading chops for uppercuts, Technical Wizard with a pair of shoulder armbreakers, boot denied and Starr catches him flush with a knee strike!

Davey Wrestling trying to get fired up, but Sabre in with a flying triangle choke... STARR REVERSES TO A DEADLIFT POWERBOMB LUNGBLOWER! NOT ENOUGH! Demanding life back into his arms, Product Placement lift but Sabre breaks it easily and traps him in the European Clutch for a nearfall! Starr kicks his leg out from under him, hanging Sabre in the ropes... DDT ON THE APRON!

Off the ropes, rolling elbow to the back of the head, brainbuster on the knee... ZACK SABRE, JR. LIVES! The Jewish Cannon stalking, back to the arm trap, ZSJ escapes with a Pele kick to the arm! Roundhouse, slap, David dodges two more kicks and fires off a low superkick! Fired up, calling for the end, again trapping the arms and again Zack escapes, but this time he lands the German suplex!

Sabre hooks the arm, floats over, Ode to Jim Breaks locked on, kicking his head in...

Zack Sabre, Jr. wins by submission with Ode to Jim Breaks.

Excellent match, and built on their recent outing for CZW quite well as well. That one was all about the arm, Sabre weakening it so thoroughly that Product Placement had no strength behind it, and here Starr came prepared, ready to fight through waves of pain and land it one-handed, and it still wasn't enough to do the deal. Love that kind of continuity.

Plus, angry Zack Sabre, Jr. is the best wrestler on the planet, and a dick to the face is a hell of a way to get there.

Jack Sexsmith vs. Zack Gibson (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Zack Gibson does his deal to great heat as always, before specifically running Sexsmith down... JACK'S HAD ENOUGH! HE'S STOMPING HIM IN! Zack manages to get to his feet and the bell rings.

Sexsmith right in but Gibson catches him, Ticket to Ride! Kicking his ribs in before drawing him up for strikes, then chucking him outside. Stomp to the head, an elbow, staggering Jack, throwing him arm-first into the ringpost to set him up for Shankly Gates. Sexsmith still in the woodshed as they go back in the ring and Zack wrenches his arm over the ropes before pummeling him with uppercuts and cross chops.

Putting the boots to him, just toying with Jack now, grabbing a wristlock and repeatedly throwing forearms to the head. Sesmith, warily, to his feet, getting fired up... exploder suplex in the corner! Head of steam, charging forearms, Gibson cuts him off with a lariat! To the second, up and over, Jack with a shiranui... NO GOOD!

Looking for the LGBDT, Zack reverses to an arm wringer and locks the Shankly Gates! Overhead elbows, Jack reverses, ends up stuck in the corner again, Gibson trying Ticket to Ride, Sexsmith blocks, tornado DDT! Only a nearfall, but the fire still burns, chops, facelock and Zack escapes with a Jim Breaks Special before punching the arm and sending Jack spiraling.

Tombstone Codebreaker connects, no good! Wicked forearms, but Sexsmith will not fall, his resolve steel. Giving back as good as he got, hammer blows, Gibson's turtled up and has the wherewithal to hit Ticket to Ride once more... JACK SEXSMITH LIVES! Cross chops for forearms, off the ropes, Jack hits a Codebreaker of his own! Superkick... NOPE!

Mr. Cocko time! Zack out ahead of it, looking for Helter Skelter but Sexsmith slips out! The Crippler Cockface is on but Gibson gets the ropes! He heads outside, Jack climbs... diving senton atomico! Back inside... huge diving double stomp! NOT ENOUGH! Suicide dive, Gibson catches him... HELTER SKELTER ON THE FLOOR!

Liverpool's Number One more than happy to take the countout... THE CROWD PHYSICALLY HELPS SEXSMITH BACK IN THE RING! Right back on the arm, Shankly Gates escaped, schoolboy pin for two, Zack thinking Helter Skelter again, Jack reverses...

Jack Sexsmith wins by pinfall with a small package.

The dream lives on! Good match, and a great sequel to their previous outing, with Jack just a little hungrier, a little better, a little harder hitting, and ready to prove that he belongs as much as anybody else. And yet, even so, he still was barely able to pick up the win, just really well put together.

Tyler Bate vs. Pastor William Eaver (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Big atmosphere early, Eaver working a wristlock but Bate is able to get away fairly easily and go after the leg in return. Deathlock, sitting back on it with a bit of help from the ropes, Pastor out, Tyler makes him pray before mockingly hitting a crucifixion pose, which provokes the Irish Church backbreaker / Fisher of Men suplex combo!

Bate outside, Bill with a plancha, back in for charging uppercuts in both directions, springboard crossbody from the holy man, only two. Calling for the crucifix powerbomb, Tyler slips away, big knee, diving uppercut, throwing more on the ground, Pastor in with one of his own but Bate catches him with the Koppo kick...

Tyler Bate wins by pinfall with the Tyler Driver '97.

Short and sweet, but it did what it needed to do and did it well. Tyler was a dick, Pastor got some shine, but inevitably the former WWE United Kingdom Champion would not be denied.

Flamita vs. Mark Andrews (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

A bit of mat grappling to start, trading leglocks and then wristlocks, finally kip-ups into a stalemate! Referee Chris Roberts does a flip at the urge of the crowd, handshakes all around, and we get back into it. The flips start flying, up and over, knucklelocks into a step-up front flip lucha arm drag!

Flamita pulling ahead, choking Andrews against the ropes, applying a cravate, snapmare to a reverse chinlock and grounding Andrews. Putting boots to him on the escape, another snapmare, going for a low kick and right back to flight! Nearfall off a stomp, the Dragon Gate star heads outside, trading chops!

Back in, Mark hits a leg drop, only one, locking an octopus hold on but Flamita staggers to his feet. White Lightning with the back suplex, no good, strikes in the corner, the luchador giving back as good as he gets as it turns into a forearm exchange in the middle of the ring. Andrews back with a huge dropkick, only a nearfall!

Shoulder thrust in the corner, arm wringer, looking for a whip but Flamita blocks so he fires off a big chop instead. Whip lands, boot up, Mark eats the post, Tiger feint kick, Flamita climbs, missile dropkick! Off the ropes... TOPE CON GIRO! Back inside, handspring back elbow, standing shooting star press, Andrews kicks out.

Charging in, Mark with a boot, Frankensteiner, corner knees, northern lights suplex chained into the standing moonsault... NO GOOD! White Lightning climbs, Flamita dodges, Andrews thinking headscissors and Flamita just puts him down! Double stomp, running knee, butterfly suplex lift dropped into a lungblower... NOT ENOUGH!

Handspring back elbow, Mark catches him with a neckbreaker! The luchador heads outside, Andrews catches him with a moonsault from the apron! Standing shooting star press, no dice. Climbing again, Flamita meets him... SPRINGBOARD AVALANCHE FRANKENSTEINER BUT ANDREWS LANDS ON HIS FEET!

Flamita charges back in, takes a kick and returns one, drops the Muscle Buster into the Codebreaker, climbs the turnbuckles, Frog Splash, back up, 450 splash... MARK ANDREWS LIVES! Trading kicks, Andrews blocks Flam Fly with a Rock Bottom, hits the shooting star press... FLAMITA HAD THE KNEES UP! SUPLEX, NO, STUNDOG MILLIONAIRE!

Off the ropes...

Flamita wins by pinfall with Flam Fly.

Very good match from two ace high fliers with a steady build to greater and greater pyrotechnics.

Matt Riddle vs. Trent Seven (Super Strong Style 16 First Round Match)

Trent gets on the mic before we can get going, demanding the crowd shut up while they're singing for our Bro. He says that a lot has changed since Orlando, mainly the massive amount of money on his long-term contract with WWE. However, he's noticed recently that Matthew has been promoted a "retire Brock Lesnar" t-shirt, and he discussed it with his colleague Brock, and he doesn't know how he thought he was going to retire Lesnar, because he couldn't cut it in NXT.

And since he's here, he couldn't cut it in UFC, either. So it's okay, you think you can come back to these shithole venues with these virgin fans and walk around with his plastic title. He tells Bro to get in the corner, and Jim Smallman finishes their introductions.

The bell rings, Seven charges in...

Matt Riddle wins by pinfall with a jumping knee strike.

YEAH, THAT HAPPENED! My word. ONE KNEE! Always, always love when promotions take a chance with something like this. I loved it when WWE did it with Brock and Goldberg last year, when New Japan did it with KUSHIDA and Hiromu earlier this year, and here, with Seven running up a bill his mouth couldn't pay immediately before, it made for great stuff.

The other two members of British Strong Style collect Trent on the stage.


A good way to kick off our tournament weekend indeed! Sabre/Starr and Banks/Havoc stand above the rest of the pack, but Andrews/Flamita and Gibson/Sexsmith were also quite good, and that main event, good lord.

Storyline-wise it's hard to evaluate after just one day, but the tension between Webster and Haskins was interesting, and Riddle vs. British Strong Style could well be going to another gear after that knockout.

Check it out on Demand Progress, folks, and the remaining days will be going up one-by-one tomorrow and Sunday at 1PM Eastern, so we've got a few more to go!

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