Young Lions Cup IV Night I

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Reading, PA – 6.23.2006

Commentary is provided by Bryce Remsburg, Leonard F. Chikarason, Icarus, and Mike Quackenbush.

The show opens up with Ed O’Mac announcing the first batch of Young Lions Cup contenders who are competing tonight. Marek Brave was supposed to be in the tournament, but did not make it to the show. Dragon Dragon is in his place. The contenders (sans Dragon Dragon) take a picture with the Young Lions Cup and receive a participation medal as well.

Young Lions Cup IV Quarter-Final Match
Lance Steel vs. Shane Valentine

Valentine controls the arm. Steel trips him and goes for the leg. Valentine rolls him into a Gedo Clutch for two. Steel puts on the Boston Crab. Valentine does push-ups to escape. Steel chops Valentine after an arm whip. Steel catches Valentine’s dropkick and puts on the Boston Crab. Valentine uses his powerful legs to kick Steel off. Steel chops Valentine in the corner. Valentine hops over Steel. Steel puts on the Boston Crab again. Valentine grabs the ropes to escape. Valentine foolishly chops Steel’s armor. Valentine fakes out Steel by pretending to go for a chop, then belly-to-belly suplexes him instead. Valentine lands a jumping back elbow and a rolling senton for two. Valentine sunset flips him for two. A divorce court DDT leads to Valentine putting on a bridging arm hold. He then puts on a side headlock. Steel nails a dropkick for two. A fallaway slam gets Valentine a two count of his own. Valentine looks for a superplex. Steel fights him off and comes down with a second rope senton splash. Steel chops Valentine up. He back elbows Valentine multiple times, holding onto his arm so he can constantly pick him back up. Steel gets two with an inside cradle. A standing leg lariat gets Valentine a two. A powerslam gets him two as well. Steel blocks another slam with the Boston Crab. Valentine taps out at 9:28. Really enjoyed how Steel kept going for his calling card finisher that has been getting him many victories. That’s just smart wrestling. Valentine is really solid all around and did some smart work. Not a bad way to kick things off at all. **1/2

El Hijo del Ice Cream is hanging out in a freezer in the back. Historical Fact #1 of the show: this would be Hijo’s debut match in CHIKARA. His brother, Ice Cream Jr., debuts tomorrow night. He talks in Spanish for a minute.

Young Lions Cup IV Quarter-Final Match
Equinox vs. El Hijo del Ice Cream {IC}

Hijo chops Equinox to the corner. Equinox hops over Hijo and backdrops him. Equinox uses the ropes to uncurl into an armdrag. He does so again before dropkicking Hijo to the floor. Equinox fakes a dive. Hijo gets back in and asks for a handshake. He smacks Equinox in the back instead. Equinox comes back with a cartwheel armdrag. He misses a standing shooting star press and eats some more chops from Hijo. Equinox rolls through an arm whip. He toreadors Hijo to the floor. He suicide dives, turning it into an armdrag. In the ring, Hijo pinches Equinox in the buttocks. He smacks Equinox hard in the face and takes him to the corner. Hijo lands an elbow in the opposite corner. Hijo double underhook suplexes Equinox out of the corner for two. Hijo gets two with a back senton as well. Equinox puts up a boot to block Hijo’s attack. Equinox rolls Hijo out of the corner, only for Hijo to hit a dropkick. Equinox comes out of the corner with a face crusher. A flurry of offense leads to a huracanrana from the top rope. Equinox pins Hijo for two. Hijo blocks a huracanrana with a powerbomb. Hijo delivers the Two Scoop Slam for two. Equinox comes back with a tilt-a-whirl reverse DDT. A standing shooting star press picks up the win for Equinox at 7:31. I forgot that at one time Los Ice Creams were actually treated as solid wrestlers with humorous tendencies. It almost makes me sad to see that now they have little to no credibility (although they can entertain most of the time). He and Equinox had a good Lucha inspired match. Equinox didn’t flub at all (though there was a close call) so that’s always a positive. **1/2

Dan Paysan says this is his opportunity to show the world that he is the very best. Capish?

Young Lions Cup IV Quarter-Final Match
Player Uno vs. Dan Paysan

Uno wrenches on a side headlock. Paysan snapmares him into a crucifix pin for two. Uno trips Paysan and puts on a front facelock. Paysan armdrags Uno. They trip each other for a quick pin attempt. Uno quesadora armdrags Paysan to the ropes. Paysan does the same, but sends Uno to the floor. Paysan leapfrogs over Uno to send him back out to the floor. Paysan flies out after him with a twisting plancha. Paysan hits a spinwheel kick back in the ring. He drops a knee for two. Uno sole butts him. A back elbow and senton earns a two count. Paysan blocks his kick and hits a superkick of his own. Paysan back elbows and boots Uno from the corner. Paysan smacks the back of Uno’s head before sending him across the ring with a headscissors. Uno fires up, hitting a knee strike in the corner and a lariat. Uno gets two for that. Paysan rakes Uno’s eyes. Paysan hops over Uno. He release belly-to-belly suplexes Uno into the corner. Uno uppercuts Paysan on the top rope. Uno hits the Game Genie and a brainbuster for two. He calls for the Bubble Bobble Buster. Paysan escapes it. He hits the Wop Drop (a Golden Gate Swing) for the pin at 7:35. Interesting to see Uno not get the win here, considering how synonymous he would be with CHIKARA in later years. Clearly these two knew each other quite well and it showed in a very fun match. **3/4

Arik Cannon says he’s not here to say that he’s going to beat Danny Havoc’s butt. Instead, he thanks all the CHIKARA fans for coming out to the show and buying the DVD. Hey Arik, you’re welcome!

Young Lions Cup IV Quarter-Final Match
Arik Cannon vs. Danny Havoc {CZW}

Historical Fact #2 of the show: Yes, Danny Havoc had a match in CHIKARA. I’m just as surprised as you are. Cannon shoulder blocks Havoc after winning a wristlock exchange. Havoc hip tosses Cannon twice. He headscissors Cannon to the floor. Havoc dives after him but gets met with a forearm. Cannon gives him a Total Anarchy on the floor! That was brutal. That only gets Cannon a two count. Cannon rocks him with a hard right hand. Cannon lifts up Havoc’s Mr. Rogers’ t-shirt over his head and boots him in the face. Cannon chops Havoc after taking his shirt completely off. Cannon lands a spinebuster while he’s at it. Havoc gives Cannon a jaw breaker and an enzuigiri on the floor. Havoc moonsaults off of a chair onto him. In the ring, Cannon ducks a clothesline and lands a neckbreaker. Cannon locks his legs and puts on a butterfly lock. Cannon uppercuts him for two. Havoc hits a running forearm in the corner. Cannon boots Havoc as Havoc lunges at him. Cannon ties up Havoc in the ropes. He punches Havoc once, then lets Bryce untie him. Cannon forearms Havoc in the corner. Havoc blocks a knee by suplexing Cannon into the corner. Cannon slips out of another suplex. Havoc kicks him to the mat anyways. Cannon gives him a nasty Saito suplex! Cannon nails the Glimmering Warlock for the pin at 9:21. Holy crap did Danny Havoc take a beating here. That was brutal, and so different in a very good way. It’s easy to see why Havoc got over in CZW; he got beaten, kept on fighting, and earned the fans respect. Putting these two together was a great call. ***

Young Lions Cup IV Quarter-Final Match
Dragon Dragon vs. Lance Steel

For the record, this is the OTHER Lance Steel, different from the Lance Steel in the opening match. Steel brings him to the corner in a lock-up, breaking it cleanly. Dragon does the same but forearms Steel instead of breaking cleanly. Dragon begs for forgiveness and seemingly gets it. Dragon tail whips and armdrags Steel. Dragon dives from the top rope onto Steel on the floor. In the ring, Steel hot shots Dragon on the top rope. Dragon tail sweeps Steel twice. He applies the Dragon Sleeper. Steel grabs the ropes very quickly. Steel picks up Dragon for a Finlay Roll. He puts Dragon in the Boston Crab. Dragon grabs the bottom rope. Dragon fires up as Steel throws some punches. He hits a big boot but misses a taildrop. Steel gets the Boston Crab on, causing Dragon to tap out at 4:57. Not bad considering Dragon was a late substitution. They did well playing off each others’ routine, and the Hogan shtick from Dragon made me chuckle. *1/2

Max Boyer introduces himself. He does not intend on being the flavor of month, but rather the next big US wrestler. He plans to start that rise by winning the Young Lions Cup.

Young Lions Cup IV Quarter-Final Match
Brandon Thomaselli {IS} vs. Max Boyer

Thomaselli cleanly breaks a lock-up in the corner. Boyer smacks his hand again when he goes for a handshake. Thomaselli breaks another lock-up in the corner. Boyer tries to attack but Thomaselli takes out his legs as he charges. Thomaselli bridges Boyer back in a test of strength. Thomaselli holds onto the knuckle lock and puts on a Japanese strangle hold. Boyer turns that into a figure eight headscissor. Thomaselli escapes and keeps on the knuckles. Boyer rolls back and puts his feet inside the lock to trip Thomaselli into a front facelock. Boyer goes for a sunset flip. Thomaselli sits down and begins to trade pins with Boyer. Thomaselli drives Boyer out of the ring with a high knee. Thomaselli goes for a suicide dive. Boyer punches Thomaselli to send him crumpling to the floor. Boyer slams Thomaselli for two. Thomaselli frees himself from a head vice. Boyer back elbows him for two. Boyer applies a headscissors. Thomaselli escapes and puts on a side headlock. Thomaselli ducks a leap frog. Boyer avoids a dropkick. Thomaselli O’Conner Rolls Boyer for two. Thomaselli rolls him up for two. Thomaselli goes for a fisherman’s suplex. Boyer escapes so Thomaselli hits an enzuigiri. Thomaselli hits a standing shooting star press for two. Thomaselli armdrags his way off Boyer’s shoulders. Thomaselli misses a top rope maneuver. Boyer goes for a backslider. Thomaselli rolls him over pinning both shoulders to the mat. Bryce counts three at 8:17, giving Boyer the win saying his elbow came up while in the hold. There was some absolutely beautiful counter wrestling in this match. I wasn’t expecting a ton from this match and it ended up being the best in the entire first round. Both guys worked real hard and mixed a lot of styles to keep things interesting. I dug it. ***1/4

Jigsaw & Shane Storm vs. Sal Thomaselli {IS} & Vito Thomaselli {IS}

Jigsaw and Vito start off. Vito brings him to the mat in a wristlock. Sal elbows Jigsaw’s arm as Vito holds on. Jigsaw key locks Sal’s legs until he grabs the ropes. Sal wants Storm to tag in. He obliges. Sal smacks Storm across the face. Storm gives him one right back. Sal forearms Storm across the face. They exchange chops until Sal pokes Storm in the eyes. Storm shoves Sal back to the corner so Jigsaw can tag in. He chops Sal in the corner. A flying knee from Jigsaw, a back elbow from Storm, and a tandem armdrag take Sal down. Sal rocks Storm with a forearm and tosses him to the floor. Jigsaw hits a dropkick to send Sal out. Jigsaw sets up for a dive but runs into a leg lariat from Vito. He gets one with a brainbuster. The Thomaselli’s double team Jigsaw, cutting the ring in half and keeping Storm isolated. Referee Matt Dillon catches the Thomaselli’s cheating when putting Jigsaw in an abdominal stretch. He stops it, which allows Jigsaw to momentarily escape. The Saints keep Jigsaw in their corner nonetheless. He finally escapes when he gives both Sal and Vito an enzugiri. Storm tags in and mows them down with forearms. A jumping version gets a two count on Sal. He sets up for the Air Raid Crash. Vito kicks him to free his partner. Jigsaw and Storm double powerbomb Vito onto Sal who is hanging in a tree of woe! Jigsaw pins Vito for two. Sal and Storm fight on the floor. Jigsaw goes for the Jig N’ Tonic on Vito. Icarus and Gran Akuma run out to get Jigsaw’s attention. They attack Storm on the floor. The Thomaselli’s take control and give Jigsaw a pendulum/double stomp combo for the pin at 10:59. F.I.S.T. sprint to the back as soon as the bell rings. There were some real cool spots in the bout but lacked a little energy in the middle. This served the purpose of going forth with the F.I.S.T./ShaneSaw feud very well. **3/4

Icarus reminds us that he made Quackenbush pass out in a Liontamer last month in Barnesville. He suggests Quack get in touch with Mister ZERO and Jolly Roger while he’s not on tonight’s show. He says Jigsaw has gotten under his skin lately and will do anything to get his hands on him.

Fire Ant {C} & Soldier Ant {C} vs. Icarus {F} & Gran Akuma {F}

Historical Fact #3 of the show: This is the first match between The Colony and F.I.S.T. in CHIKARA. This is technically (thought not truly) the beginning of their everlasting feud. Icarus tries to lock up Fire Ant on the mat. He fails. Icarus forearms his way out of a wristlock. Fire Ant armdrags his way off of Icarus’ shoulders. A quessadora armdrag and forearm send Icarus out. Soldier Ant and Akuma tag in. Akuma tries to stop him from saluting. He kicks Soldier Ant in the side when he won’t. Soldier Ant makes Akuma salute. Soldier Ant delivers an armdrag and satellite headscissors Akuma as well. Akuma dropkicks Soldier Ant’s neck and spine into the middle turnbuckle. F.I.S.T. take control of Soldier Ant in their corner. Soldier Ant avoids a dropkick from Akuma, sending Akuma out. He army crawls the ropes to Fire Ant. Icarus dropkicks him before he can make a tag. However, the dropkick sends him to the floor, which brings in Fire Ant legally. He comes off the top with a Flying Blockbuster to Icarus. He gives Akuma a quesadora DDT. He fireman carry’s Icarus onto Akuma on the floor. A double fake out allows Fire Ant to dive onto Akuma and Soldier Ant onto Icarus. Icarus tosses Soldier Ant into a few rows of chairs. Back in the ring Icarus gives Fire Ant a reverse DDT for two. Akuma hooks his leg before falling back into a slam. Icarus gives him a TKO (to mock Soldier Ant possibly?) Akuma’s fisherman’s Falcon Arrow just gets a two. Bryce Remsburg is getting annoyed at how F.I.S.T. isn’t going for a pin. Jigsaw and Shane Storm come out to get into Akuma’s face. They get into a shoving match. With Icarus distracted, Fire Ant rolls up Icarus for the pin at 10:16. I like the symmetry with the two teams costing each other matches back-to-back, but it did sort of make the matches themselves fall into the background. F.I.S.T. vs. Jigsaw & Shane Storm should be a fun one tomorrow. The Colony also have noticeably improved since their first match. **3/4

After the match, F.I.S.T. take out both Ants and referee Matt Dillon. Icarus (in so many words) says he cannot wait to get his hands on Jigsaw tomorrow night.

Young Lions Cup IV Semi-Final Elimination Match
Lance Steel vs. Equinox vs. Dan Paysan vs. Arik Cannon vs. Lance Steel vs. Max Boyer

One of the Steel’s and Paysan start off. Paysan hurts his hand trying to grab Steel’s helmet. That allows Steel to take control on the mat. Paysan pokes Steel in the eyes and tags in Equinox. The other Steel tags in as well. Equinox escapes a headlock with a grounded headscissors. Each man snaps off an armdrag, then fall when they each go for a Japanese armdrag. Boyer and Cannon tag in. Boyer trips Cannon. Cannon keeps moving so Boyer can’t grab a submission. Boyer works out of his headscissors. Cannon holds onto his wrist and snapmares him into a headlock. Cannon cleverly escapes a Camel Clutch by sliding through Boyer’s legs and tripping him into a waistlock. Boyer puts on a headscissors. Paysan comes in to put one on Boyer. Equinox puts a hedscissors on Equinox. The Steel’s turn them over into a four person Boston Crab. Equinox grabs the ropes to release the hold. Boyer and Cannon dropkick Lancelot. One Steel stays in the ring with Boyer. Steel gives him a sit-out hip toss. He goes out. For a moment it looks as if the Steel’s will wrestle, until one tags out to Cannon. A chop battle of course sees Steel as the victor. Cannon does however deliver a pair of armdrags after applying a headlock. Paysan is fearful of Cannon’s chop. This brings in Equinox who gets forearmed to the mat by Paysan. Paysan suplexes him for two. A standing moonsault gets him two also. Paysan spins Equinox out of a waterwheel slam onto his face. Equinox fires up. Paysan slams him and misses the standing shooting star press. Equinox hits it himself to eliminate Paysan at 13:28. Paysan has some words with Equinox from the floor, allowing Boyer to roll up and hold Equinox’s tights for the pin at and elimination at 14:08.

One of the Steel’s tries to attack Boyer from behind. Boyer catches him with a Hot Shot. Cannon and Boyer put aside their differences from earlier to work together. They take turns wearing down the Steel that tried to jump Boyer. Boyer whips Steel to the corner. His chest armor lessens the impact, and Steel is able to come out with a clothesline. Boyer grabs an ankle lock to keep his and Cannon’s momentum going. Moments later, Steel catches Cannon with a Finlay Roll. The other Steel and Boyer tag in. Steel clotheslines everyone, including his partner! This causes a shoving match between Lancelot over who is going to win the match. They pull off their armor to engage in a chop/forearm battle. Steel looks for a Boston Crab. Boyer turns his mask and German suplexes him for the pin at 20:43. Boyer German suplexes Cannon. The other Steel breaks his bridge and puts him in a Boston Crab. Boyer taps out at 20:56. This leaves just Cannon and Steel. Cannon dropkicks him in his exposed chest. Cannon goes for the Glimmering Warlock. Steel grabs his leg to block and goes for the Boston Crab. Cannon reverses with a prawn hold for two. Cannon and Steel knock each other down with simultaneous clotheslines. Cannon and Steel chop one another. Cannon gives him a Saito suplex. The Glimmering Warlock gets him the pin and the victory of the match at large at 22:23. Cannon will be heading to the finals in Philadelphia in just two nights. This had it all; great technical wrestling, some nice strike battles, storyline inclusion; you can’t ask for much more. Cannon was I think the right choice here though Boyer by this point already looked ready for the Cup. Despite the slow go in the first third of the match we ended up with something really fun. ***1/4

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