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Watch This Wrestling 49 (12/10—12/16)

Hello friends!

As always, if I’m missing anything that can be accessed without too much trouble, @ me on twitter: henrytcasey .

What I Watched

  • Beyond Wrestling: Cold Brew, 12/10
  • Evolve 97, 12/10
  • Fight Club Pro: Infinite, 12/10
  • Monday Night Raw, 12/11
  • SmackDown LIVE, 12/12
  • 205 Live, 12/12
  • NXT, 12/13
  • Death Match 7, 12/13
  • MLW: Never Say Never, 12/13
  • Impact Wrestling, 12/14
  • Progress Chapter 59: Whatever People Say We Are, That’s What We’re Not, 12/15
  • House of Glory: Se7en, 12/16

Upcoming Watch List

  • WWE Clash of Champions 2017, 12/17
  • Monday Night Raw, 12/18
  • SmackDown LIVE, 12/19
  • 205 Live, 12/19
  • NXT, 12/20
  • Progress: Live at the Dome (12/13), 12/22

Non-WWE Match of The Week:

Mark Davis vs. Jordan Devlin vs. MK McKinnan vs. Omari (Infinity 2017 – Final)

Fight Club: PRO: Infinity 2017

Fight Club Pro — one of my favorite new promotions to watch this year — came to a raucous crescendo with its Infinity 2017 tournament. And so while I wanted to give the point to one of the many other good matches from that week (wow, see below), this elimination based-fourway was so solid. Not only does it offer a chaotic scramble style, but you practically got a whole other great match when it was down to the final two. 

Honorable Mentions:

  • Walter vs David Starr, Beyond Wrestling: Cold Brew, 12/10
  • Darby Allin vs. Keith Lee vs. “Hot Sauce” Tracy Williams, Evolve 97, 12/10
  • Jaka vs. Zack Sabre, Jr. © (Evolve World Championship), Evolve 97, 12/10
  • Matt Riddle vs. WALTER (No Rope Breaks Match), Evolve 97, 12/10
  • Omari vs. Millie McKenzie (Infinity 2017 – First Round), Fight Club: PRO: Infinity 2017, 12/10 VOD
  • Kay Lee Ray vs. Mark Davis (Infinity 2017 – First Round), Fight Club: PRO: Infinity 2017, 12/10 VOD
  • Ospreay/Okada vs Naito/Takahashi, NJPW World Tag League Final, 12/11
  • Zack Sabre Jr. vs Chuck Taylor in a Falls Count Anywhere No Ring Match, Death Match 7, 12/13
  • MJF vs Joey Ryan, MLW: Never Say Never, 12/13 
  • Shane Strickland & John Hennigan vs Jimmy Havoc & Darby Allin, MLW: Never Say Never, 12/13
  • Grizzled Young Vets (Zack Gibson & James Drake) vs Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis), Progress Chapter 59: Whatever People Say We Are, That’s What We’re Not, 12/15
  • EYFBO (Angel Ortiz & Mike Draztik) vs Private Party vs House Of Gangone vs Brian Burgundy & TJ Marconi, House of Glory: Se7en, 12/16
  • Zack Sabre Jr. vs Amazing Red, House of Glory: Se7en, 12/16

Non-WWE Segment of The Week

A Wild Chris Jericho Appears… And Then

NJPW World Tag League Final, 12/11

What started as a fantastic surprise now has some teeth to it, thanks to these two segments. Just, bravo. 

Also, gotta love the subtle trolling from Jericho, in the lines saying this match will end Omega, he specifically suggests it’s the end of Omega’s run in New Japan. 

    WWE Match of The Week:

    Roman Reigns vs. Cesaro – Intercontinental Championship Match

    Monday Night Raw, 12/11

    Ah Cesaro. Remember what I said about his former fellow King of Wrestling in WTW 48? Same goes here. 

    And this match allowed him to show management that he’s ready as hell for a singles push if and when Sheamus retires.

    Honorable Mentions:

    WWE Segment of the Week:

    “Don’t talk to Drew like that.” – Tony Nese / Tony Nese vs Enzo Amore

    205 Live, 12/12

    It pissed off many that Enzo Amore got the cruiserweight championship, but wow has this situation helped Drew Gulak. While the below segment focuses on the match between Nese and Amore, I’m only bringing it in as contextual info to a clip WWE’s YouTube doesn’t have, a backstage segment where Gulak’s Team PowerPoint buddy Tony Nese — maybe Drew’s one true friend — stuck up for Drew. 

    The sadness of the betrayal, though. Not since Festival of Friendship has WWE hit this note so well.

    Honorable Mentions:

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    Watch This Wrestling 43 (10/29—11/4)

    This week was better than the one before it.

    As always, if I’m missing anything that can be accessed without too much trouble, @ me on twitter: henrytcasey .

    What I Watched

    • Beyond Wrestling: Apocalypse Dudes, 10/29
    • Monday Night Raw, 10/30
    • SmackDown LIVE, 10/31
    • 205 Live, 10/31
    • NXT, 11/1
    • Fight Club Pro: Day of the Dead, 11/2 VOD
    • Progress Chapter 56: La Danse Macabre, 11/2 VOD

    Upcoming Watch List

    • NJPW Power Struggle, 11/5
    • Monday Night Raw, 11/6
    • SmackDown LIVE, 11/7
    • 205 Live, 11/7
    • NXT, 11/8

    Non-WWE Match of The Week:

    Aussie Open vs Moustache Mountain

    Fight Club Pro: Day of the Dead, 11/2

    This match almost didn’t make it here, but because Hon. Mention 1 has Stokely and Hon. Mention 2 has Goth Martina, but wow this is a showcase of greatness.

    If you’re not familiar with Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis, collectively known as Aussie Open, then take this match — you get Tyler Bate and Trent Seven, you can trust them — as your first taste. Fletcher’s god damn one arm … well, I’ll let you see that, and everything else, for yourself.

    Honorable Mentions:

    • Jonathan Gresham with Stokely Hathaway vs Travis “Flip” Gordon, Beyond Wrestling: Apocalypse Dudes, 10/29
    • Session Goths vs No Fun Police, Fight Club Pro: Day of the Dead, 11/2

    Non-WWE Segment of The Week

    Entropy

    Progress Chapter 56: La Danse Macabre, 11/2

    Sure, we gotta boo the heels, but holy heck I write this in praise of this segment. Because

    1. excellent payoff to what Progress was building.
    2. Vicky Haskins is a deity, or possibly a demon.

    A closed system inevitably descends into disorder 

    📷 @POA_wrestler pic.twitter.com/pvGqdQMkVD

    Honorable Mentions:

    WWE Match of The Week:

    Authors of Pain vs SAnitY featuring William Regal’s Takeover Announcement

    NXT, 11/1

    Not only was this a fun match in a week filled with fun WWE matches, but it has a little bonus at the end. Something that most got spoiled by in one way or another.

    Honorable Mentions:

    WWE Segment of the Week:

    “Everybody can get it, and everybody will” – Samoa Joe

    Monday Night Raw, 10/30

    Watch this promo and answer me this question:

    How is Joe not the champion of the universe at this point?

    Is it because being a little chubb and not being white are both things that Vince doesn’t think work, and combined, he just can’t put the rocket on you? God damn Joe is the best.

    Honorable Mentions:

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    Watch This Wrestling 18 (5/4–10)

    No preamble this week, minus the typical list of what I watched for this week’s edition and what I’m planning to watch next week. If I’m missing anything that can be accessed without too much trouble, @ me on twitter: henrytcasey.

    What I Watched:

    • WCPW Pro Wrestling World Cup: Mexico Qualifier, 5/5
    • Fight Club Pro: Dream Tag Team Invitational Night One, originally took place on 4/11, available on VOD on 5/5
    • Battle Club Pro: May The Villain Reign, 5/6
    • Monday Night Raw, 5/8
    • ROH Wrestling, 5/8
    • “FIFTY” – Being the Elite Ep. 50, 5/8
    • SmackDown LIVE, 5/9
    • 205 Live, 5/9
    • Talking Smack Live, 5/9
    • NXT, 5/10

    Upcoming Watch List

    • “Moving Forward” – Being The Elite Ep. 51, 5/11
    • Ring of Honor: War of the Worlds, 5/12
    • “Bullet Club Gets a Villain” – Being The Elite Ep. 52, 5/13
    • Monday Night Raw, 5/15
    • ROH Wrestling, 5/15
    • SmackDown LIVE, 5/16
    • 205 Live, 5/16
    • Talking Smack Live, 5/16
    • NXT, 5/17

    Non-WWE Match of The Week:

    British Strong Style vs The Elite

    Fight Club Pro: Dream Tag Team Invitational Night One, originally took place on 4/11, available on VOD on 5/5

    Few teams can go toe to toe with The Elite (Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks, Matt and Nick Jackson), but British Strong Style might have actually pulled it off. Of course, many might balk at the $20 VOD price of the DTTI Night One event, but this card is a fantastic roundup of the best of independent wrestling talent today.

    Available for purchase on Vimeo.

    Honorable Mentions:

    • EC3 vs Flip Gordon vs Darius Carter, Battle Club Pro: May The Villain Reign, 5/6
    • Young Bucks vs The Squad, ROH Wrestling, 5/8

    Non-WWE Segment of the Week:

    “FIFTY”

    Being the Elite Ep. 50, 5/8

    Matt & Nick Jackson’s Being The Elite YouTube series took a big turn with this episode, that I’ll explain further next week, but “FIFTY” offers everything. From storytelling and a cornball saccharine rendition of “Say Something” to on-the-road behind-the-scenes footage, this is proof of why the Young Bucks have been smart to cut their own path on the road.

    Honorable Mentions:

    WWE Match of The Week:

    Hideo Itami vs. Roderick Strong – NXT Championship No. 1 Contender’s Match

    NXT, 5/10

    If you were wondering about how much rust Hideo Itami would bring to the ring, you can watch this match to bury those questions. Also, points to Roddy for finally being over with the Full Sail crowd.

    Honorable Mentions:

    WWE Segment of the Week:

    “12 Days”

    SmackDown LIVE, 5/9

    This was the second time we’ve seen this style of promo from Jimmy and Jey, The Usos, and I give them all the credit for having waited between renditions. Normally with WWE, once a promo style gets over, it gets run until stale (see: Amore, Enzo & Cass, Big).

    Still, the UK crowd, which had been a little quiet overall throughout the week, bought in fully here.

    Honorable Mentions: