wrestling / Columns

Csonka’s Top 16 Matches of February 2019: WWE, NJPW, OTT, CMLL, More

March 8, 2019 | Posted by Larry Csonka
WWE Elimination Chamber

WELCOME back, back to the column that makes lists and hopes that you enjoy them. This week’s column will look back and the month of February 2019 and the top 16 matches I have watched for the month. I always hear a lot of people saying that they can’t decide what to watch because they do not have enough time to follow everything, so maybe this will help those of you short on time find some stuff to check out. Have fun, and always, thanks for reading. Also, if you saw matches from companies I do not regularly catch; feel free to share them with the others. The more wrestling we share, the more fun we can have. Thanks for reading! As always, consider this my play list of great matches, recommendations for the month. It’s wrestling, we love it and will disagree. The only rules are “have a take, be respectful, and don’t be a dick.”

* 16. From OTT Homecoming II: Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett vs. Scotty Davis & Will Ospreay [****]
* 15. From CMLL 2.15.19: Caristico, Mistico, & Valiente vs. Euforia, Gran Guerrero, & Ultimo Guerrero [****]
* 14. From CMLL 2.22.19: Barbaro Cavernario vs. Titan [****]
* 13. From NJPW New Beginning in Sapporo (N2): Suzuki-gun (El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI & Shingo Takagi) [****]
* 12. From OTT Homecoming II: Shigehiro Irie vs. Ilja Dragunov [****]
* 11. From NXT TV 2.13.19: Adam Cole vs. Ricochet [****]
* 10. From WWE Elimination Chamber: Buddy Murphy vs. Akira Tozawa [****]
* 9. From NXT 2.20.19: Johnny Gargano vs. Velveteen Dream [****]
* 8. From NJPW New Beginning in Osaka: Jay White vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi [****]
* 7. From NJPW New Beginning in Sapporo (N1): EVIL vs. Zack Sabre Jr. [****]
* 6. From NJPW New Beginning in Osaka: Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Taiji Ishimori [****]
* 5. From Rev Pro High Stakes: Will Ospreay vs. Pac [****]
* 4. From OTT Homecoming II: WALTER vs. Pac [****]

 photo WWE_Championship_Elimination_Chamber_zpsmqpjagw7.jpg

3. From WWE Elimination Chamber – Men’s Elimination Chamber [****¼]: For me, this match was a tale of two matches. Overall the layout & structuring of eliminations all worked, but the first half or was just there for me. And then, it came down to Bryan vs. Kofi and that is when this bad boy jumped from solid/good to absolutely outstanding. The closing stretch between the two was excellently done, with a hot & invested crowd, great drama, great work, and a real feeling Kofi had a chance to pull off the miracle win. This was an overall great match.

 photo OTT Homecoming II Jordan Devlin vs. David Starr_zpszvufish7.jpg

2. From OTT Homecoming II : Jordan Devlin vs. David Starr [****½]: This right here was an excellent piece of business, and the best thing on the OTT Homecoming II event. The spry was that the two were allies, with Starr betraying Devlin. Starr played mind games during his entrance with his gear &their old music to fuck with Devlin, and it worked as Devlin rushed him and attacked, setting the tone for things even before the match officially started. The heat was off the charts, and Starr’s opening antics and general work gave his insane heat, causing the crowd to live and die for everything Devlin did. In the end, Devlin used two package piledrivers to secure the win and his revenge; just beautiful.

 photo pac kzy_zpsrcxbi32n.jpg

1. From Dragon Gate Truth Gate – Pac vs. KZY [****¾]: Since his WWE departure, Pac hit the ground running, returning home to Dragon Gate, having great matches, and traveling all while boosting attendances for all involved. He’s a name people wanted unleashed, and they are willing to pay to see him. It has all going to plan for him, but he was missing that one top tier performance to make him an elite player. This match, in concert with KZY, was that performance. This was 25-minutes (it never overstayed its welcome) and mixed in beautiful and athletic in ring action along with extremely strong character work, a main event anywhere in the world in front of a hot and invested crowd. The near falls really delivered as the crowd was almost willing KZY to survive and win the title. He didn’t, he failed, but proved in that failure that he has what it takes to be a champion and big time player for the promotion. This is a certified MOTY contender.

– End Scene.

– Thanks for reading.

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The 411 on Wrestling Podcast returns after a long hiatus to the 411 Podcasting Network. On today’s show, 411’s Larry Csonka discuses Jushin Liger’s retirement, Tommaso Ciampa’s neck injury, previews the WWE Fastlane PPV, and discusses his recent medical issues, which led to his absence in early 2019. The show is approximately 33 minutes long.

Liger – 3:30
Ciampa – 6:20
Fastlane – 9:40
Personal Update – 23:45