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Csonka’s WrestleCircus: Taking Center Stage Review 2.19.17

February 19, 2017 | Posted by Larry Csonka
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Csonka’s WrestleCircus: Taking Center Stage Review 2.19.17  

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Csonka’s WrestleCircus: Taking Center Stage Review 2.19.17

– DJZ defeated Jonathan Cruz and Gentleman Jervis Cottonbelly @ 7:30 via pin [***]
– Scott Norton defeated Joey Ryan @ 5:00 via pin [DUD]
The Jax Dane Open Invitation: Jax Dane defeated Two AAPW Students KO Cox and Grand Hammer @ 2:48 via countout [NR]
The Jax Dane Open Invitation: Jax Dane defeated Trevor Lee @ 7:45 via pin [***]
– Dezmond Xavier defeated Rey Fenix & Shane Strickland @ 13:15 via pin [****½]
Battle of Honor: Donovan Dijak defeated Ray Rowe @ 13:13 via pin [***]
WrestleCircus Sideshow Championship Match: Champion Scorpio Sky defeated Jordan Len-X @ 10:10 via pin [**¾]
Big Top Tag-Team Championship Battle Royal: The Guerillas of Destiny won the Big Top Tag-Team Championship Battle Royal @ 27:50 via pin [**½]
– Jeff Cobb defeated ACH @ 12:33 via pin [****]
Lady of the Ring Elimination Match: Rachael Ellering vs. Sexy Dulce vs. Chelsea Green @ 18:35 via pin [DUD]
Ringmaster Title Match: Champion Brian Cage defeated Zack Sabre Jr @ 13:45 via pin [***¼]
– Ricochet defeated Sammy Guevara @ 16:36 via pin [***½]

– Judging by the back wall of windows, I am pretty sure we’re live from an auto repair shop

– The ring announcer is the artist formerly known as Gavin Loudspeaker.

DJZ vs. Jonathan Cruz vs. Gentleman Jervis Cottonbelly: DJZ is the former TNA X-Division champion, Cruz is a Florida independent worker best known for his work on the Dos Ben Dejos tag team (he’s done enhancement work for both WWE & TNA). Jervis has worked a lot of CHIKARA as well as Championship wrestling from Hollywood. DJZ& Jervis worked a fun back and forth, Cruz cut off DJZ and sent him to the floor and followed with a dive. Cruz and DJZ then brawled, Jervis cut him off and they spilled to the floor, where DJZ followed with a great dive. DJZ then hit a high cross onto both, sending everyone into the crowd. Back in the ring, DJZ worked his lucha game, but Cruz and Jervis cut him off and hit double superkicks. Cruz hit a backhand spring cutter on Jervis, and then wiped out DJZ with a superkick. DJZ hot the rolling ZDT onto both men, and then covered Cruz for the win.

DJZ defeated Jonathan Cruz and Gentleman Jervis Cottonbelly @ 7:30 via pin [***] This was a good opener, accomplishing the goal of getting the show off to a fun start and getting the crowd involved without doing way too much. It was fun.

– The crowd lost their shit for Scott Norton and the nWo music.

Scott Norton vs. Joey Ryan: Norton ran wild early, but “hurt his knee” on an atomic drop spot, because of Ryan’s super dick gimmick. They slowly worked to the floor for a short brawl. We then got dick related spots, where Norton went for a tree slam but got hit with a dick in the face, and then fell into Ryan’s crotch and sold being knocked loopy. Ryan then spilled out a bag of gummy bears, ala the tacks spot. Norton then struggled and powerbombed Ryan into them for the win. Scott Norton defeated Joey Ryan @ 5:00 via pin [DUD] I did not find this good in any way, Ryan’s gimmick does nothing for me to be honest and Norton was sadly way too slow; but I’m glad he’s getting bookings, he seems to be happy working towns again.

Jax Dane Open Invitation: Jax Dane vs. Two AAPW Students KO Cox and Grand Hammer: Dane kicked their asses right away, tossing them around with ease. He then hit the DVD onto both at the same time. Dane then killed them both with spears, tossed one to the floor and then took out Grand hammer with a neck breaker. Dane tossed them both to the floor and won via countout. Jax Dane defeated Two AAPW Students KO Cox and Grand Hammer @ 2:48 via countout [NR] It was fine for what it was.

– Dane demanded another opponent and got Trevor Lee.

Jax Dane Open Invitation: Jax Dane vs. Trevor Lee: Lee attacked right away, ran wild with strikes, taking the action to Dane. Dane then ended him with a lariat. They brawled on the floor, and back in Lee sidestepped Dane and hit a dive, but Dane caught him and slammed him on the apron. Back in the ring, Dane continued his ass beating, tossing Lee around. Lee beat the count back in, fired back with kicks and the dropkick. Lee then hit the PK off the apron and then hit the suicide dive. Lee followed with a high cross back in the ring for a near fall. Dane quickly cut him off, hit an overhead toss and then Lee hit the superman punch and Dane posted himself and Lee got the near fall off of a German. Dane powered up and hit another overhead toss and the spear; Lee is done. Jax Dane defeated Trevor Lee @ 7:45 via pin [***] Good match, playing off of the monster vs. resilient face format very well. Lee looked good and got a believable near fall before Dane put him away. This was a ton of fun and was worked with a great sense of urgency.

Rey Fenix vs. Shane Strickland vs. Dezmond Xavier: Fenix is known by many of his Lucha Underground work, Strickland does a lot of CZW and is Killshot in Lucha Underground; Xavier is getting a lot of buzz for his work on the indies. Fenix is a polite young man, and offers up handshakes. Xavier and Strickland to begin, Fenix enters the fray for a series of fun counters with Strickland. They worked into a series of three-way spots and into a stand off. Xavier tossed to the floor; Fenix runs wild, lots of fun stuff with Strickland, who hits the superkick. Xavier back in, hits a running, twisting shooting star press for the near fall. Xavier to the floor, Fenix cuts him off, allowing Strickland to hit the spin kick. They pick up the pacing really well, keeping the crowd excited. Fenix runs wild with kicks and a double stomp to the apron on Xavier. Strickland then moonsaults off of Fenix, and onto Xavier on the floor. They work back into the ring, Fenix shoves Xavier off the ropes, hits a double stomp for the near fall. Xavier cuts off Fenix on the ropes, Strickland then hits the SUPER RANA onto Fenix, who lands on Xavier. The crowd loves this. Xavier tries to fight off both men, eats superkicks, but fires up and RANAs Strckland into Fenix. Xavier then hits the Sasuke special, back in and Strickland hits a cutter on Fenix, but Xavier makes the save. Fenix battled back with superkicks, headed up top, and hits a ropewalk dive to the floor onto both of his opponents. Back in the ring they go, and all three battle, exchanging kicks, and doing a big three-way down spot. Fenix then hit a cutter on Xavier, but Strickland hits the reverse RANA on Fenix, but Xavier then scores the win on Strickland. Dezmond Xavier defeated Rey Fenix & Shane Strickland @ 13:15 via pin [****½] This was an absolutely awesome match, and a great example of allowing three guys some time to go out there and kill it. Xavier came out of this looking great, and the win was just an added bonus for him. This is exactly what I wanted from this, bat shit crazy and killer action. This was great and came off as effortless by all three with a great flow.

– Post match, they all embraced, and then Strickland laid out both guys. Fans tossed money into the ring and Xavier collected it.

Battle of Honor: Ray “Death” Rowe vs. Donovan Dijak: Dijak is done with ROH, which sucks for them, but will allow him to work more places, which I love. They brawled right away, with Dijak tossing him around and then the action spilled to the floor. Rowe slammed Dijak into a brick wall, but back in, Dijak kicks Rowe in the head. Rowe up top, teases a suplex to the floor, but Dijak slips out and chokeslams Rowe off the top. Dijak maintains control, sending Rowe to the floor. After a short brawl, they worked back in the ring, where Rowe took control back; Dijak cut off a suicide dive attempt and they brawled on the apron, where Dijak hit the chokeslam. Back in and Dijak misses the moonsault, allowing Rowe to hit a dead lift German for the near fall. Dijak hits the spinning kick, sends Rowe to the floor but Rowe slips back in and hits a German through the ropes; fall away slam by Rowe gets 2. Rowe hits the running boot, and then the running knee strike. Dijak fires up, choke breaker and then the moonsault follow but Rowe kicks out. They slowly trade strikes, and start to throw bombs. Dijak then counters a suplex, Rowe counters out with a belly to back suplex. Rowe shakes off the big boot and turns Dijak inside out with a lariat. Rowe hits the knee strike and sitout powerbomb for a near fall. Dijak counters the full nelson bomb into the feat your eyes for the win. Donovan Dijak defeated Ray Rowe @ 13:13 via pin [***] This was a good, back and forth hoss battle. They had a lot to overcome following the last match, but despite their hard work, they just couldn’t get the crowd as fired up as maybe they would have earlier in the show. It felt a little flat down the stretch, but they worked really hard. I think placing this after the three-way was not a good plan

WrestleCircus Sideshow Championship Match: Champion Scorpio Sky vs. Jordan Len-X: I haven’t seen a lot of Sky in recent years; this is my first time seeing Len-X. Nice back and forth beginning, working at a nice pace, leading to Len-X hitting a plancha early. Sky cut off Len-X, taking him to the apron and hitting the leg drop. Sky argued with the ref, and then went back on the attack. Sky worked a bland heat, Len-X finally made a comeback hitting a dropkick and then the leg lariat. Sky managed to roll up Len-X and planted him, head drop style for a near fall. Bicycle kick by Len-X, and that is followed by a version of the AA for a near fall. Sky hit a knee strike and fisherman’s buster for the near fall. They traded strikes, but Sky hit a cutter for the near fall. Len-X escaped the cutter, hit a double stomp and then hit a Spanish fly. Some dude in a sling, “trashman” arrives to distract the ref seemingly forever as Len-X had the cover. Sky then hit Len-X with the title belt and retained. Champion Scorpio Sky defeated Jordan Len-X @ 10:10 via pin [**¾] This was a pretty good match, but it lacked an invested crowd, and I hated the run in. Commentary was no help in explaining WHY this man arrived for the distraction, they dropped the ball there.

– Wait, the ring announcer announces that from now until SXSW, the WrestleCircus Sideshow Championship will be defended under 24/7 rules.

“Joanna Ryan” (Leva Bates) arrived, doing the entire Joey Ryan entrance, including oiling up. They killed a lot of time with this, and then Sky attacked. She hit the boobs plex, but Sky fought back. Bates did the Joey Ryan cock spot, hitting the YouPorn plex and won the title. But Joey Ryan arrived and rolled her up to win the title.

Big Top Tag-Team Championship Battle Royal: Guerillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Roa) vs. Killer Elite Squad (Davey Boy Smith Jr & Carson[subbing for Archer]) vs. Pretty Boy Killers (Keith Lee & Shane Taylor) vs. The Boys vs. Extra Talent-ed vs. Scott MacKinzie & Dirty Andy Dalton: This is Royal Rumble style until members of two teams are left, and then it turns into a regular tag match. One of the Boys and Shane Taylor will begin. This is to crown the first ever tag champions. Taylor used his size to dominate early. #3 was Ricky Starks. He worked over the Boy, and hit a people’s trust fall. Taylor cut him off quickly, and #4 was Tonga, who got a great reaction. He made the mistake of going after Taylor, who shook him off. Tonga did his misdirection spot, and hit a shoulder block and took down Taylor. #5 was Carson, who threw powder right away. Starks tried to toss a boy. #6 was MacKinzie. He got to run wild a bit, #7 was Dalton as it completely broke down. Tonga then got tossed by Dalton. MacKinzie and Dalton worked together and #8 was Davey Boy Smith Jr. MacKinzie was eliminated during his entrance. Carson and DBS suplexed Taylor, and #9 was Roa. and we have buffering issues. Aron Solow is now in, post buffering. And now Keith Lee has entered the battle. DBS and Carson attack Lee, we get a tower of doom spot. Boy #2 is in, hitting a cutter on Lee. He then hit sliced bread on Solow. DBS & Carson argue, allowing Lee &Keith to eliminate them, they then brawl on the floor. We’re down to The boys and the Pretty Boy Killers . The PBK slowly destroy the Boys, who then eliminate Taylor & Lee. The final two teams are The Boys & Extra Talent-ed. Solow is eliminated, and so is one of the Boys. Roa is still in there; he was apparently taking a nap. The final two teams are now Extra Talent-ed & the Guerillas of Destiny. They brawl on the floor, we get some chair shots and men tossed into the first few rows of chairs. Tonga gets suplexed onto the floor, Solow and Starks worked double teams on Tonga and picked up some near falls. Roa made the save, but he fell prey to double teams. The GOD made their comeback, hitting Guerrilla warfare for the near fall. The double team powerbomb connects for another near fall. Starks dumps Roa, he and Solow again work double teams but Roa makes the save and then hit a 3D on Starks. They finally put away Solow with the double team DDT. The Guerillas of Destiny won the Big Top Tag-Team Championship Battle Royal @ 27:50 via pin [**½] This came across as “average” at best, it was solid, but the Rumble portion was poorly laid out and executed, feeling sloppy at points. It got better once we got to Extra Talent-ed & the Guerillas of Destiny, but not enough to make up for the early portion. This was also one of those matches that felt way too long; the good news is that Solow really shined here. This reportedly came off great live but it didn’t translate to iPPV well at all to me.

ACH vs. Jeff Cobb: They worked power vs. speed to begin, working the easy dynamic and playing to the crowd well. Cobb fired back with a dropkick, surprising ACH. Cobb then went back to the power game, hitting suplexes until ACH countered with a RANA. ACH then dropkicked him to the floor and hit a PK off the apron, but Cobb catches him and slams him to the apron. They brawled on the floor for a bit, back in and Cobb continues to toss him around with ease. ACH then picked up the pace, hitting a quick series of strikes and kicks to fire up and make the comeback. ACH then hit a bridging German for a near fall. ACH hit another PK of the apron, followed with another and then finally takes him down. ACH rolls Cobb back in, ACH flips out of a German, hits a superkick and another. Cobb then catches him with an overhead belly to belly and then head drops him on a German for the double down. They trade strikes from their knees, and then trade on their feet. Cobb goes rapid fire with strikes, and then destroys ACH with a lariat. ACH powers up, hitting a suplex but Cobb fights back after eating the top rope splash and rolls into the tour of the islands for the win. Jeff Cobb defeated ACH @ 12:33 via pin [****] This was a tremendous effort from both guys, playing off of the power vs. speed dynamic well and keeping a tiring crowd invested the entire time. Cobb won over the crowd with his performance against “the King of Texas,” ACH.

Lady of the Ring Elimination Match: Rachael Ellering vs. Sexy Dulce vs. Chelsea Green: Dulce is the former Sexy star, Green is TNA’s Lauren Van Ness, and Rachel is Paul Ellering’s daughter. Green is dressed like Harley Quinn. Tessa Blanchard was originally advertised for this, but she’s off working on Rock & WWE’s Paige family movie. Dulce and Ellering attack Green right away, and then Green takes a powder. They follow her to the floor where Dulce accidentally takes out Ellering. Dulce up top, and hits a high cross to the floor onto both of her opponents. Back in the ring, Dulce works over Green. Good back and forth from Dulce and Green, Dulce hits the lucha arm drag off the ropes and then Green accidentally dropkicks the ref. Green hits a seated senton off the apron to Ellering and they spill into the crowd. Ellering fires back with kicks, returns to the ring; she and Dulce worked some basic back and forth, slowing down the action. Duce hit a rough looking head scissors, followed with chops and Ellering pretty much misses a superman punch. Ellering then gets a near fall off of the running senton. Green returns from her nap, tosses Dulce and then curb stomps Ellering to the buckles. Tat got a near fall. Ellering battles back with forearms, but jumps into the code breaker for another near fall. Dulce returns, Green hits a rolling neck breaker on Ellering, tries to slap Ellering but misses. Knee strikes by Green, and almost botches the draping DDT but Ellering kicks out. This is bad, they are not working well together and the execution is so sloppy. Ellering hits a spine buster, but Dulce makes the save. Green hits the worst unprettier ever on Dulce, they are on different pages in different books. This just keeps going, Dulce finally pins and eliminated Green. Ellering and Dulce went back and forth, Ellering is limping around; I think she got hurt on Green’s missile dropkick. Dulce works a series of slower than molasses strikes. Ellering hits an STO and a leg drop off the ropes for a near fall. WHY WON’T YOU GO HOME? Dulce slams Ellering off the ropes, near fall so this just keeps going. Dulce hits a suplex, slooooooooooooowly rolls into another and lays there. Slooooooooooooooooooowly rolls into a third, but Ellering cuts her off and hits a TKO for the win. Rachael Ellering vs. Sexy Dulce vs. Chelsea Green @ 18:35 via pin [DUD] This started off well enough and then went off a cliff in the worst way. It went way too long, all three women got nap time on the floor so they could attempt to work one on one segments and that led to some of the worst wrestling of the year so far. Dulce was particularly bad at times, taking bumps in the wrong direction. Green’s execution at times was really horrible. There is nothing good to say about this match other than it ended. This was the absolute worst thing on an otherwise strong show.

Ringmaster Title Match: Champion Brian Cage vs. Zack Sabre Jr: ZSJ was sprawling around looking to ground cage and grapple. Cage takes control working the test of strength, curls ZSJ but ZSJ slides around and works the sleeper and then transitions into a hanging triangle choke. They trade strikes, ZSJ then fights but Cage hits the dead lift superplex. Cage hits a series of clotheslines and then tosses ZSJ across the ring. Cage takes full control with the power game, and then they trade uppercuts. Cage hits a cradled suplex and covers for a near fall. The butterfly suplex follows, and cage then works an inverted cloverleaf, but ZSJ makes the ropes. ZSJ works uppercuts, but Cage counters with a slam. Moonsault by Cage, but ZSJ catches him with a triangle choke. Cage goes for a powerbomb, but ZSJ hits a RANA. The PK follows and ZSJ covers for 2. ZSJ then locks in the octopus hold center ring, but Cage escapes into the sitout Alabama slam for the near fall. ZSJ escapes the suplex, attacks the arm but Cage powers out into a powerslam. The dead lift German follows for Cage, and then he hits another. ZSJ counters the third into the prawn hold for 2. Cage then hits an F5 for the near fall. ZSJ counters another F5, and then hits a bridging German for 2. Cage battles back with a powerbomb, but ZSJ then counters the pin attempt into an arm bar; Cage powers out, and hits a buckle bomb. Cage counters the hanging kimura into the Steiner screwdriver to retain. Champion Brian Cage defeated Zack Sabre Jr @ 13:45 via pin [***¼] This was a good, but not great match. I felt that they worked the clash of styles very well, but the homestretch felt a bit flat, and overall I was a bit disappointed with the match.

Ricochet vs. Sammy Guevara: Guevara has been gaining more attention in 2017, getting some WWNLive bookings and getting on shows that more people can easily see. Tonight he gets a chance to step up against the king of flight, Ricochet. Ricochet wanted the handshake, Guevara shot him the bird and they then worked into a fast paced opening stretch. Ricochet sent Guevara to the floor and hit a pair of dives. They brawled on the floor, and Guevara slammed Ricochet to the wall, he climbed the supports and then hit a moonsault onto Ricochet. Back in and Guevara laid the boots to Ricochet. Guevara took the heat, did squats with Ricochet on his shoulders and hit a Samoan drop. Guevara stays one step ahead until Ricochet hits a dropkick. They go back and forth, 619 by Ricochet and then hits the springboard uppercut for 2. Guevara fights off the Regal plex, Guevara avoids the kicks, but Ricochet hits the bridging German for 2. Ricochet lays in some hard kicks, Guevara avoids the bennadryller and hits a knee strike. People’s standing shooting star press by Guevara and that gets a near fall. Ricochet avoids the superkick, sets Guevara up top and then RANAs him off the ropes for a near fall. Guevara fires back as they trade strikes, and Ricochet decapitates him with a lariat. They slowly trade strikes again, Ricochet drops him, hits a kick and then Guevara counters the bennadryller with the revere RANA. Guevara up top, hits the shooting star press for 2. Guevara back up top, but gets cut off and Ricochet follows. He gets knocked to the Mat, but runs back up and hits the blue thunder bomb off the ropes for the near fall. Guevara heads back up top, misses the 450, rolls through, and Ricochet hits a knee strike, northern lights into the dead lift suplex. The bennadryller follows, and Ricochet covers for 2. Ricochet follows with kicks to the head, Guevara tells him to fuck off and he eats another kick. Ricochet hits a modified Michinoku driver, and then hits the 630 and wins. Ricochet defeated Sammy Guevara @ 16:36 via pin [***½] This was a very good, and fun main event but it never felt great. It was a tremendous athletic display at times, but was devoid of drama as I never felt Guevara had a real chance to win. It did come off well as the first chapter of a longer story, which seems to be the plan as they set up a rematch.

– Post match, Guevara tells Ricochet to fuck off again, so ricochet hits a Rock bottom and people’s moonsault to stand tall.

– Ricochet put over Guevara, noting that he was good but not good enough to beat him. He then says they should do it again, and then thanks the crowd.

– End scene.

– Thanks for reading.

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“Byyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyye Felicia!”

The final score: review Good
The 411
I feel that WrestleCircus’ first iPPV should be considered a success. They had a fun roster of talent, a ton of good matches and only two I would consider bad (although one was extremely bad) and Norton vs. Ryan was what it was, just a nostalgia appearance for Norton (but still no good). I felt that the production was strong, I only had one buffering issue, and the show looked clean. I do feel that they need to invest in graphics and the lighting became an issue late in the show, once they lost the natural light through the windows. As far as the commentary goes, I was not a big fan. As a new fan, I never felt welcomed in by them, and also felt that they did a poor job of explaining important storyline issues and were too concerned with inside jokes and talking about “New York.” All in all a good show, if a bit too long; that’s one area where EVOLVE has really done well at, keeping shows between 2.5 and 3 hours; this was 4-hours and 45-minutes, and it felt really long at the end of the night. I would check out another iPPV from the company.

What you have to see: Rey Fenix vs. Shane Strickland vs. Dezmond Xavier, ACH vs. Jeff Cobb, Ricochet vs. Sammy Guevara.