Tag World Grand Prix 2008, Night I


Oberhausen, Nordrhein-Westfalen, DE – 11.8.2008

Commentary is provided by Jagged, Shane Matthews, Mike Quackenbush, Claudio Castagnoli, and Amasis.

Tag World Grand Prix First Round Match
Fire Ant {C} & Soldier Ant {C} vs. Lionheart & Kid Fite

Lionheart and Soldier Ant trade holds looking for control. They keep reversing each other’s Irish whip attempts. Soldier Ant puts on a modified Octopus Stretch, then armdrags Lionheart to the corner. They collide mid-air with crossbody’s. Fire Ant rolls Fite into an armdrag. He delivers some chops. Fite rakes his eyes but Fire Ant manages to get in some more chops after recovering. The Colony give him a double atomic drop and double dropkick. Fire Ant hits a rolling senton as Soldier Ant falls on him with a saluting headbutt. Lionheart knees Soldier Ant from the apron, allowing Fite to give him a side Russian leg sweep. The English duo work over Soldier Ant until he and Fite knock each other down with stereo clotheslines. Fire Ant comes in throwing forearms to both Fight Club members. He takes them both down with fireman’s carry’s. Fite gives him a hammerlock DDT. Soldier Ant headbutts Fite and German suplexes him. Lionheart superkicks Soldier Ant. He misses a frog splash. Fire Ant hits the Heat of the Moment to send him to the floor. He Burns Down the House on Fite. He gives him an antzuigiri before hitting the Beach Break. He pescado’s onto Lionheart. Soldier Ant nails Fite with a top rope headbutt for the pin at 11:28. This was a really fun match to open the show. The crowd was enthralled with the Colony and ate up everything they did. The Fight Club had some great teamwork during the heat segment and were genuinely disliked by the crowd. A good recipe for a hot opening to the show. **¾

Vin Gerard calls Swiss Money Holding a joke, saying it’s 2008, not 2003. He calls the UnStable the hottest tag team of the year. He says they’ll be going home with three points, then insincerely says Oberhausen is a great place to live.

Tag World Grand Prix First Round Match
Claudio Castagnoli & Marc Roudin vs. Vin Gerard {U} & STIGMA {U}

The UnStable jump Swiss Money Holding before the bell. Gerard mocks Claudio’s dance. Swiss Money Holding dropkick the UnStable into each other, then wishbone their legs. They double boot STIGMA to the floor. Claudio uppercuts Gerard. Roudin pokes Gerard into a vertical suplex from Claudio. Roudin atomic drops him into an uppercut from Claudio. They drop double elbows on Gerard. Claudio legdrops him as Roudin lands a splash. STIGMA is cut off as he re-enters the ring. Gerard is whipped into him. Roudin spears Gerard, then Claudio drives him feet first into STIGMA. Claudio Giant Swings STIGMA. Gerard knocks Roudin to the floor. Claudio gets distracted and hits the floor. This allows Gerard to bring Roudin back into the ring as the legal participant, who STIGMA and Gerard double team in their corner. STIGMA misses a Swanton Bomb. Gerard tries to grab Roudin. Roudin elbows him away. He rolls to his corner to make a tag but Emil Sitoci has Claudio distracted and on the floor. Gerard schoolboys Roudin for the pin at 9:47. Despite the Sitoci distraction derailing the matches momentum, it was a fine back and forth match and a good way to have the UnStable advance while keeping Claudio strong. **¾

The Osirian Portal list some of the great teams in the tournament, including their opponents The Thrillers. None of the teams are Campeones de Parejas like them. Amasis says they don’t have to win the tournament, but when they win, their will be no challengers for their titles. He claims Germany is another domain for them to takeover.

Tag World Grand Prix First Round Match
Joel Redman & Wade Fitzgerald vs. Amasis {OP} & Ophidian {OP}

Redman controls Ophidian with some technical wrestling. Ophidian sneaks in a victory roll for two. Redman takes him over with a Northern Lights suplex. He rolls through and calls for a brainbuster. Ophidian slips out and tags in Amasis. Fitzgerald puts him in a headscissors. Amasis pops out. Redman smacks Amasis in the head from the apron. Fitzgerald also slaps him. Amasis asks for a test of strength. Fitzgerald catapults himself up into a Frankensteiner. He uses the ropes for a toreador and sends Amasis to his corner with a satellite headscissors. Amasis uses some misdirection to get in a throat strike. Fitzgerald dropkicks him to the floor and follows with an Asai moonsault. Redman catches Ophidian with a quebradora backbreaker and a gut buster. He knee strikes Ophidian and the whiplash effect sends him to the floor. Ophidian holds Fitzgerald’s leg. This allows Amasis to catch him with a front face trip back in the ring. Th Portal beat down Fitzgerald until he hits a back handspring elbow on Ophidian. However, Amasis knocks Redman off the apron so their beatdown on Fitzgerald can continue. A few moments later, Fitzgerald catches Ophidian with a moonsault body block. Redman suplexes Amasis into the corner and pops Ophidian up into a powerslam. He tries a brainbuster. Ophidian turns it into the Death Grip. Fitzgerald enzuigiri’s Ophidian, allowing Redman to maneuver him into a pendulum stretch. Fitzgerald dropkicks him in the crown of his head. Amasis drops the top rope to send Redman to the floor. Fitzgerald hits a shooting star headbutt on Ophidian. Amasis breaks the count. Fitzgerald hits him with an enzuigiri. Ophidian trips Fitzgerald on the top rope. They take him down with the Pyramid suplex. The Osirian Sacrament gets them the victory at 12:07. Redman and Fitzgerald looked absolutely fantastic, both bringing a different element as a team. They looked really formidable against the Portal, and part of me wishes they had been paired against a different team so that they could have moved on to the second round. Really good wrestling all around. ***

Steve Douglas, Sha Samuels, & Big Van Walter vs. Bad Bones, Emil Sitoci & Bernd Föhr

Sitoci and Douglas block each others’ hip tosses. Sitoci takes him over with a Frankensteiner. They armdrag one another. Sitoci gives him an atomic drop. Bones low bridges the ropes so Sitoci hits the floor. Douglas escapes and Samuels attacks Bones from behind. Bones snapmares him into a chest kick and a standing frog splash. He backdrops Föhr onto Samuels. Föhr dropkicks him twice before giving him a Frankensteiner. Walter lights Föhr up with chops and forearms in the corner before pitching him to the floor. Walter resists Bones’ running shoulder blocks. He gives him a knee lift in the stomach. Samuels gets in some shots before Sitoci comes off the top with a double axe handle. Sitoci gets two with a moonsault press. Bones gives him a twisting neckbreaker for two. Douglas kicks Bones from the apron. Bones chases after him. Walter tosses Föhr in the ring from the apron. Being the smallest man in the match, Föhr gets bullied by his opponents with ease. Cleverly, Sitoci dropkicks Walter as he has Föhr lifted up for a gorilla press slam, causing Föhr to hit the floor. Bones attacks Walter and spears him twice in opposite corners. Walter catches Sitoci’s crossbody attempt. Bones spears him again. Samuels gives Sitoci a spinebuster. Douglas drops Sitoci with an Angels’ Wings. Bones accidentally clotheslines Sitoci. He chases Douglas out of the building. This leaves Föhr with Walter. Walter powerbombs him for the pin at 12:30. This was probably more enjoyable if you follow wXw storylines, especially with whatever’s going on with Douglas and Bones, but it was a decent trios match for people the crowd is used to seeing. **

PAC and Martin Stone have been put together after their respective partners couldn’t make it. PAC says Kota Ibushi “buggered his shoulder” and Doug Williams had TNA commitments. They both agree however to bring their win back home to the Queen.

Tag World Grand Prix First Round Match
PAC & Martin Stone vs. Icarus {F} & Chuck Taylor {F}

Stone takes down Icarus with a running shoulder block. He takes him over in a side headlock which Icarus reverses into a headlock. Icarus rakes his eyes leading to a forearm elbow. Stone is taken down with a headscissors. Stone sends Icarus to the floor with a running shoulder tackle. Taylor and PAC tag in. After some Lucha rolls, PAC dropkicks Taylor in the chest. He holds Taylor so Stone can kick him in the stomach and give him an uppercut. After stomping Taylor down in the corner, PAC comes off the top with a double axe handle to Taylor’s shoulder. He gives Taylor a running forearm in the corner for two. PAC hits a corkscrew moonsault off of Stone’s back. PAC puts on a front facelock. Icarus breaks it with a Back Cracker. F.I.S.T. take control of PAC. He fends off Icarus with a top rope dropkick and tags in Stone. He blasts Taylor with a series of right hand. Taylor sunset flips Stone, but Stone rolls through and nails a clothesline. He uppercuts Taylor in the corner and sends him out with a Polish Hammer. PAC flies out after him. Icarus dropkicks Stone. He hits a Death Valley Driver for two. He tries for the Wings of Icarus. Stone counters with a half-nelson suplex and lariat. Taylor makes the save. PAC schoolboys Taylor for two. He comes in from the apron with a slingshot Ace Crusher. He only gets two with a standing corkscrew splash. Taylor sends him overhead with a belly-to-belly suplex. Stone gives Taylor one of his own. Icarus tries the Shiranui. Stone blocks it, but eats F.I.S.T. Kicks. Taylor avoids PAC’s back handspring. Taylor gives him Sole Food. Icarus nals the Shiranui for two. Stone mows down Icarus with a lariat. PAC follows up with a shooting star press for the pin at 13:54. Best action of the night so far. Stone and PAC really came together as a team, with PAC providing the speed and Stone the power. Taylor and PAC were really fun when they were in the ring together. Some of the sequences were really cool and the finish was great. ***¼

Tag World Grand Prix First Round Match
Johnny Kidd & Robbie Brookside vs. Adam Polak & Lazio Fe

Polak and Fe are known as Revolution Purple, with the Gorgol Bordello song to match. Kidd cartwheels out of Polak’s snapmare attempt. He dropkicks Polak to the corner out of a double knuckle lock. Brookside snapmares Polak while holding onto a wristlock. Kidd elbows his outstretched arm. Fe tags in. Kidd rakes his boots across his face. Kidd takes him down with a wristlock reversal. Brookside snapmares Fe into a back kick. Polak wants a full nelson, but Kidd grabs him by his wrist and takes him down. He then dropkicks Polak’s outstretched arm. Brookside continues working the arm and fingers over. Fe tags back in. Kidd stretches him out in a Japanese Strangle hold with a bodyscissors. He and Brookside get in some shots. Polak gets tripped by Kidd when he comes back in. He and Brookside wishbone his legs. Fe decides to go after Kidd’s ankle. Polak attacks his shoulder. Kidd manages to slingshot Polak into Fe. Brookside hip tosses Fe in from the apron and nails him with uppercuts. He brings Fe down with an Iconoclasm. Polak breaks the pin. Brookside sends them head first into one another. Kidd gives Polak a jawbreaker. Polak sweeps out his legs and jackknife pins Kidd with his feet on the ropes for the pin at 10:34. Kidd and Brookside are so much fun to watch on offense. It’s bizarre to see fans start a mosh pit for Brookside when he comes out, but also awesome. It’s a shame their ride had to end so early, especially with a lame finish, but the Purple were serviceable foils and can hopefully continue to entertain next round. **½

Shane Matthews compares him and Jagged never advancing to the second round of a Tag World to the Gambino and Billy Goat’s Curses. Matthews says he’s changed his shirt, bandana, and is wearing a hat to try and change things up. Jagged has changed nothing, believing that it’s America that’s been the problem. Now that they’re in Germany, they will go down as 2008 Tag World champions.

Tag World Grand Prix First Round Match
Tommy End & Andrew Patterson vs. Jagged {2.0} & Shane Matthews {2.0}

Patterson is filling in for Zack Sabre Jr. who could not make it to the show. His name was pulled from a hat after Darkness Crabtree and Randy Orton were pulled and didn’t show. Matthews proudly takes End down in a waistlock. End rolls Matthews from a courting hold and steps on his stomach. Matthews slaps him in the face, then retreats into Jagged’s arms. Jagged baits Patterson into a side headlock. He trips Patterson and messes with his afro. Patterson takes down Jagged and messes with his hair. After some leapfrogs, Patterson delivers a leg lariat and a pair of dropkicks. He gives Jagged an atomic drop. End takes him down with a running kick to the chest. Jagged rakes Patterson’s eyes to escape a wristlock. After some jabs in the corner, he tags in Matthews, leading to 2.0 isolating Patterson in their corner. Patterson manages to slip out of the ring after ducking a double clothesline. End takes down Jagged with a Pele kick for two. Matthews ends tandem kicks from End and Patterson. Jagged takes them both out with a top rope dropkick. He drops End out of a Gory Gallows for two. Jagged pops Patterson up into a spear from Matthews. 2.0 go for the Sweet Taste of Professionalism. End however kicks Jagged from the apron. He gives Matthews a stunner and rolls into a Dragon Sleeper. Matthews taps out at 10:52. Patterson and End really impressed, especially when you consider Patterson was a last minute replacement. 2.0 also have picked up their aggression which to me makes them more fun to watch. **¾

Mike Quackenbush says not many men wear the moniker “The Master of 1,000 Holds” these days. Quackenbush says the name reminds him of many people: Blue Panther, Nick Bockwinkel, Dean Malenko, George Kidd, and Jorge “Skayde” Rivera. Today, the man who wears that moniker he’s concerned with is Johnny Saint, the most elegant counter wrestler to ever grace the squared circle. He says that months ago they met in the ring in Germany where they tied up the match at one fall a piece as a Draw. At the time he was satisfied because he had just gone hold-for-hold with one of the best. But now, he’s no longer satisfied, and is “in it to win it” in a rematch tonight.

World of Sport Rules
Mike Quackenbush vs. Johnny Saint

This match has six five minute rounds with a 30 second rest period in between each round.

Round One: Saint brings Quackenbush to the mat in a hammerlock. He applies a courting hold. When Quackenbush tries to escape, Saint rolls through. Quackenbush gets a wristlock on. Saint reverses and gives Quackenbush a spinning toe hold. Quackenbush applies a headscissors. Saint turns him over and pops out. Saint has on a full nelson as the first five minute round concludes.

Round Two: Quackenbush places his knee on Saint’s knee and twists on his ankle. He then twists his leg around Saint’s ankle and bridges back to apply pressure. He uses his other foot to escape and turn Quackenbush over into the Romero Special, but doesn’t hold onto it for long. Saint baits him into a schoolboy for two. Quackenbush puts on an abdominal stretch. Saint hip tosses his way free. They trade wristlocks. Quackenbush almost gets a pin with a crucifix pin, but Saint thrusts his posterior into Quackenbush’s stomach causing him to break free. Saint puts on a chinlock while stretching Quackenbush over his knees. Quackenbush slips out and looks for a pin. Saint applies a nerve hold just as the round ends.

Round Three: More wristlock exchanges. Saint gets on a headscissors. Quackenbush worms his way out. Saint rolls into the Black Pool Ball. He lures Quackenbush into an arm whip. Saint gets two with a schoolyard trip and folding press. Quackenbush kicks away at his arm. When neither man gets a pinfall in an exchange, Quackenbush ties up Saint’s legs. Saint gets out of it by rolling Quackenbush into a crucifix pin attempt. Saint snapmares Quackenbush while holding the arm. He legdrops the arm and applies pressure to the arm between his legs. As Quackenbush is looking to escape a hammerlock, the bell rings to end the round.

Round Four: Saint applies the nerve hold that ended Round Two. Quackenbush crosses his arms and takes him over in a modified Japanese stranglehold. Saint stomps on Quackenbush’s knee to escape. Saint and Quackenbush collide into each other with their shoulders, causing them both to fall. Saint follows up his earlier knee attack with a knee breaker. As the bell ends the fourth round, Saint remains on the ground as it seems he hurt his own knee on the knee breaker. Quackenbush and the referee check on him and help him out. Because he can’t make it to his feet on his own by a ten count, the referee declares the match a win for Quackenbush in 20:00.

Like their wXw match, while the action was really good and fun to watch, the ending was dissatisfying. It seems like they were building to a third match to truly give us the match we want, but that match, to my knowledge, never came to pass. I appreciate the art of counter wrestling these guys incorporate, especially since it’s rare to see Quackenbush gets schooled in that department. ***¼


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