Closing Time

Closing Time-500

Philadelphia, PA – 12.2.2017

Championship Rundown
Grand Champion: Juan Francisco de Coronado
Campeones de Parejas: El Hijo del Ice Cream & Ice Cream Jr.
Young Lions Cup Champion: Ophidian

Commentary is provided by Mike Quackenbush, Rory Gulak, Scott Holladay, and Sidney Bakabella (who apologized for his past transgressions on commentary at the top of the show).

Sylverhawk {X2K} & Razerhawk {X2K} vs. Hermit Crab & Cajun Crawdad

This is a rematch from “A Good Man Goes To War.” Sylverhawk controls Crab by his arm until Crab pulls at the back of Sylverhawk’s mask and transitions to a side headlock. Sylverhawk answers Crab’s strike with one of his own, and the volatility causes Crawdad and Razerhawk to jump into the ring. Razerhawk takes a cheap shot for his troubles and is sent outside. Sylverhawk evades attacks from the Crustaceans, and Razerhawk re-enters the fray with a double top rope dropkick. Crawdad is double dropkicked outside before Razerhawk hops off Sylverhawk’s back for a legdrop onto Crab. Crawdad shoves Sylverhawk off the top rope to stop his potential attack. Crab counters Razerhawk’s cascade with a powerbomb and goes for the Boston Crab. Razerhawk crawls to the ropes to escape, but finds himself isolated as Sylverhawk recovers. Razerhawk took a lot of damage to his neck and back, but was able to hit Razerhawk with a back handspring enzuigiri. Before he could tag out, Crab dumped him with a Teardrop Suplex for two. Shortly after, Razerhawk gets Crawdad on the floor and follows him out with a suicide dive. This allows Sylverhawk to legally enter the bout with a springboard crossbody to Crab. A Stinger Splash in the corner is followed up with a high-angle brainbuster for two. Sylverhawk splashes Razerhawk off of his shoulders onto Crab for another two count. Both X2K members ascend the ropes. Crawdad pulls Razerhawk down by his throat and chokeslams him on the apron. At the same time, Crab catches Sylverhawk’s leg as he comes down with a splash and applies a Flat Crab! Sylverhawk crawls to the ropes to break the hold. A series of offense leaves all four men lying. X2K hit stereo superkicks on Crab for a pin attempt which is broken up by Crawdad. Crawdad passes Sylverhawk off to Crab for a spinebuster and gives Razerhawk an Alabama Slam for stereo nearfalls. Sylverhawk stops Crab’s Naniwa elbow on the second rope. Crawdad follows in the hopes of a double chokeslam. However, Razerhawk comes to the rescue, only for Crab and Crawdad to bring both him and Sylverhawk down with double chokeslams. El HIjo del Ice Cream appears on the apron to distract, but Nytehawk takes him away. Ice Cream Jr. appears. Crab throws Razerhawk into him! The Crustaceans set up Sylverhawk for Low Tide. Razerhawk intercepts.Sylverhawk spikes Crawdad with a piledriver. Razerhawk boots Crab. The X2K stack them up. Sylverhawk hits the Xyber Splash and Razerhawk follows up with the Xwanton Bomb for the pin at 12:30. Their first match was really good and this was just an eyelash away from being just as good. They kept a good pace and energy and the crowd was very much into everything they did. The X2K can finally put to rest their issue with Crab and Crawdad and look ahead to the Campeones de Parejas. ***

The Proletariat Boar of Moldova vs. Amasis {OP}

Ophidian is in Amasis’ corner wearing a sling, hurt from the attack he endured at the hands of 17 at “Kill The Moon.” Before the match begins, 17 sneaks into the ring. The Boar gives him the ring and leaves. 17 catches an off guard Amasis with a trifecta of running palm strikes before dislocating his shoulder by placing his boot on Amasis’ shoulder and pulling back on the arm. Ophidian and several crew members take Amasis away. Commentary says this could very well could be the last we see of this Amasis.

Mark Angelosetti {T} vs. Hallowicked {LOR}

This is a rematch from “Dark Water.” Angelosetti requested this rematch due to Hallowicked’s feet being entangled in the ropes when he pinned Angelosetti in a small package in the previous encounter. Hallowicked immediately goes for Never Wake Up, but Angelosetti resists and shoulder blocks him down. Hallowicked rolls to the floor when Angelosetti begins to warm up for his signature series of splashes. Hallowicked fails to bait him into a legdrop to the neck. Angelosetti rams Hallowicked into the corner for several tackles. Angelosetti halts Hallowicked’s attempt to send Angelosetti shoulder first into the corner and instead throws Hallowicked into the corner shoulder first while hammerlocked. Angelosetti lands the series of splashes he attempted earlier. The big one gets him a two count. Hallowicked maneuvers Angelosetti into a top wristlock. Angelosetti weaves Hallowicked into a Magistral, but Hallowicked stops him with several punches to the face. Angelosetti ducks a step-up enzuigiri. However, Hallowicked back elbows him to the floor. Hallowicked backs Angelosetti to the post to stop a suplex. Hallowicked tries the step-up enzuigiri again but ends up striking the post with his shin! Angelosetti hits a twisting splash to the floor. Back in the ring, Angelosetti focuses his attack on Hallowicked’s leg that struck the ring post. Angelosetti attempts a swinging reverse suplex, but Hallowicked musters a super snapmare to counter. Angelosetti goes back to the leg only for Hallowicked to enzuigiri Angelosetti to give himself some space. Angelosetti counters Go 2 Sleepy Hollow with a small package. A flurry of offense follows, ending with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. The two men attack one another in opposite corners. Hallowicked catches Angelosetti’s reverse leapfrog on his shoulders and brings him down into Go 2 Sleepy Hollow for two! On their feet, Hallowicked pulls down Angelosetti into a small package and has his feet in the ropes. Angelosetti kicks out. Hallowicked then backslides Angelosetti and puts his feet on the ropes, but referee Bryce Remsburg catches him. Angelosetti O’Connor rolls Hallowicked into the Flea Flicker for the pin at 10:51. This was a terrific follow up to last month’s encounter. They played into the cheap finish from that match without overdoing it and told a great story between Hallowicked’s injured leg and Angelosetti remaining one step ahead almost the entire contest. ***¼

Jasper Tippins {DP} & Donald Kluger {DP} vs. Oleg the Usurper & Kobald {LOR}

Kobald has given Oleg some tough love as of late, fed up that their team isn’t as successful as he had hoped. Tippins gives Kobald a back cracker for a very early two count. Kobald rolls to the floor and instructs Oleg to enter as the legal man. Tippins pulls Oleg to the corner where Kluger helps him with several corner punches. Oleg runs through a double clothesline and takes down Dez Peloton by himself with stereo clotheslines. Oleg picks up speed by running the ropes and splashes Kluger and Tippins in opposite corners. Kobald tags himself in and gives Tippins a Falcon Arrow for two. He also gets two with a second rope Demon’s Toilet. Kobald’s attention turns to giving Oleg what for, allowing Tippins to scoop Kobald up into a Finlay Roll. Kluger follows up with a slingshot splash for two. Dez Peloton hit the Broken Arrow on Kobald. Kobald accidentally throws Kluger head first into Oleg’s mid-section. Kluger then gorilla press slams onto Oleg on the floor! In the ring, Kluger gets some shots on Oleg, but one forearm from Oleg takes Kluger down. Oleg splashes Tippins against the ropes. He boots Kluger and sets up for “Off With His Head!” Kobald chases Tippins into the ring with a foreign object. He goes to strike Tippins, but Tippins moves, and he almost hits Oleg! Oleg catches Kobald and breaks his object. Tippins drags Kobald outside while Kluger backslides Oleg for the pin at 5:59. The match totally revolved around the disintegration of Kobald and Oleg, but they sprinkled in enough solid wrestling to make it worthwhile. *½

Kobald yells at Oleg for losing again. He rips off his Oleg the Usurper t-shirt and hits Oleg with his own “Off With His Head!” strike. Kobald is quite pleased with himself. From the mat, Oleg goozles Kobald. His vow to never harm Kobald officially ends as he gives Kobald a chokeslam! Kobald runs to the back, officially ending the partnership.

Officer Warren Barksdale vs. Gran Akuma

Akuma gives Barksdale a hard kick behind his leg. Barksdale is able to take down Akuma in a waitlock. They exchange holds until Barksdale, after three tries, takes Akuma down with a shoulder block. He drops an elbow for a one count. He then gets two with a senton. Akuma strings a sole butt kick and a fallaway chest kick together. Barksdale rolls outside, only for Akuma to penalty kick him from the apron. Back inside, Akuma locks Barksdale in a surfboard neck stretch. Akuma releases, sending Barksdale face first into the mat. Barksdale evades a corner attack and knocks down Akuma with a pair of back elbows and a back body drop. He drops Akuma with a brainbuster for two. He calls for “Book Em.” Akuma slips out, intercepts a clothesline, and palm strikes Barksdale in the back of the head. He drops Barksdale out of a reverse suplex into a facebuster for two. Barksdale ducks a ripcord kick. They fight for a front facelock. Barksdale picks up Akuma, but Akuma reverses it back and hits the Tenchi Crash for the pin at 6:21. Akuma beating up the new crop of talent is a great role for him, and a nice contrast to what his former partner Icarus has been doing as a coach and mentor. Akuma looked smooth and incorporated some new offense in with the old, which is appreciated. Barksdale did an admirable job holding his own with a Gen 1 original and showed more grit than usual. This was a lot of fun. **¾

Oceanea vs. Merlok

Oceanea is the former Ashley Vox who is more focused and determined than we have seen previously. Merlok doesn’t budge at her Shotgun dropkick. He rocks her jaw with a throat thrust, but Oceanea responds with a barrage of forearm strikes to the chest. Oceanea slides off his shoulders and kicks his legs out. He catches a kick and lifts her up into a running Samoan Drop! Oceanea gets up on her own accord and manages to take down Merlok with a running shoulder block! She follows up with a cannonball senton and three basement dropkicks. After some boot scrapes she pins Merlok for two. Merlok lifts Oceanea and throws her across the ring. She beckons him to the corner. He tries a splash but Oceanea moves. She clobbers Merlok with repeated forearms again. He whips her into the opposite corner and follows in with a splash. Uncharacteristically, Merlok climbs to the top rope. Oceanea cuts him off and brings him down with a super fisherman’s buster! The crowd cheers as Oceanea climbs back up to the top turnbuckle. She comes off with a super senton splash for two. She then hooks Merlok into the Reel Catch submission (modified Rings of Saturn), and Merlok taps out at 4:56! With the way these two characters have been handled all season long, this came off as a monumental moment. Ashley Vox underwent so much torment at Merlok’s hands, losing her manager and mentor, and all of that negative energy was harnessed into making her a stronger competitor who could finally defeat the same monster who brought her such anguish. It’s a satisfying conclusion to a full circle story and puts Vox up several rungs on the roster. From the crowd’s reaction, this is a great move for her. **½

After the match, Merlok kneels to Oceanea in a sign of compliance. He then holds the ropes for her to exit.

Rick Roland & Sloan Caprice vs. Hammerlock Harry & Petey The Package

This is Roland’s first CHIKARA match in six months and his return from injury. A charging Petey gets chucked across the ring by Roland. He cracks Petey with a boot that causes Petey to practically melt to the floor. Harry is terrified to get in the ring, but finds himself clotheslined on the floor by Caprice. Caprice gives him the four corner slingshot suplex, but instead of suplexing Harry himself passes him onto Roland for the honors. Roland passes him off to Caprice for the F-10. The Closers hit the Deal Breaker on Harry and Petey for the pin at 2:35. An impressive outing for the Closers in their reintroduction. *

Lucha de Apuesta – Loser Gets Masked
Hype Rockwell vs. Race Jaxon

The loser of this match will be forced to wear a mask going forward. Jaxon immediately bails to the floor to avoid Rockwell. However, Rockwell pulls him up to the apron and Beele’s him back inside. Jaxon stops Rockwell with a dropkick, then follows him outside with a lope suicida. He hits a slingshot spear before pummeling Rockwell on the mat. Rockwell cuts him off with a spinebuster and a series of strikes. Jaxon drop toe holds Rockwell into the middle turnbuckle, taking a glance at himself in the mirror before hitting a tiger feint kick. Rockwell catches Jaxon coming off the top rope and delivers two overhead release suplexes. He tries to scoop Jaxon up, but Jaxon rakes his eyes and hits a clothesline through the ropes. Rockwell cracks Jaxon with an enzuigiri as Jaxon ascends the ropes, causing Jaxon to fall to the floor. Rockwell pescado’s after him. Despite Jaxon’s boots when they get back in the ring, Rockwell keeps his momentum with a spin-out slam. Jaxon slips out of a Hyperwheel attempt. Rockwell stops a sunset flip, but Jaxon kicks Rockwell away and then hits a series of dropkicks. Jaxon hits the Ace Crusher but only gets a one count! Jaxon lands a discuss forearm for a two count. Rockwell peppers Jaxon with punches before drilling him with an inside out clothesline. Jaxon pulls Bryce Remsburg in the way to avoid a corner attack. He goes to kick Rockwell low like he did in Chicago, but Rockwell catches his leg. Rockwell then hits the Hyperwheel for the win at 7:15. They packed a lot of action and story into seven minutes, building upon their match from Chicago and providing a satisfying pay off. Each character brought a little something to the table in their arsenal too. Even though N_R_G were not beloved, there’s promise to both these characters going forward on their own. ***

Hype puts a plain white mask on Race. The sight of himself masked in the mirror causes Race to fall backwards in horror.

Missile Assault Man vs. Jeremy Leary

Missile comes out with no helmet or vest, rubbing and holding the sides of his head in anguish. Leary smiles at his predicament. The bell rings and Missile is rocking in the corner calling out his own name. Leary takes a seat in front of him and combs his hair. Missile gets to his feet and approaches Leary who backs to the opposite corner. Leary says “Missile Assault Man”, which causes Missile to unleash with uppercuts. He lands a series of running uppercuts as well. Leary slides out of the Missile Launcher and rolls to the floor. Missile again grabs his head in anguish. Leary takes a seat in the front row. He says he doesn’t care about winning, he just wants a front row seat for what’s about to go down.

With that, three large men emerge and surround the ring. Bryce counts out Leary at 2:56. Missile tells the three men to “come on.” From the fourth side of the ring comes a man that Sidney Bakabella identifies as “Nicodemus from Titor.” Leary had mentioned him during the Secret Season, and gave his business card to The Whisper at “Bad Wolf.” Nicodemus whispers something to Missile that puts him in a trance. On his own, Missile walks out of the building and intro the streets. Leary smiles and applauds the situation.

After seeing this, Lucas Calhoun broke his Twitter silence with the following message:

Solo Darling & Travis Huckabee vs. Sonny Defarge & Cornelius Crummels

The two teams brawl at the bell, with Darling and Defarge fighting to the floor. Huckabee ends a strike exchange with Crummels by hooking him in the swinging Stretch Muffler. Darling follows up by locking Crummels in the Sharp Stinger. Defarge drives Huckabee into the ring apron before breaking Darling’s submission with a full nelson slam. Defarge suplexes her into a running elbow drop from Crummels for two. Crummels drops Darling with the Unprettier for two. They give Darling the Oliver Twist in the corner while knocking Huckabee off the apron. Defarge has a difficult time keeping Huckabee out of the ring, so Crummels sneezes in Huckabee’s face and gives him a double knee buster. They set up Darling for the super monkey flip. However, Huckabee from the floor holds onto Crummels’ foot. Darling slaps Defarge from the top rope and comes down with a Yoshi Tonic on him! Crummels breaks up her pin on Defarge. Crummels halts Darling’s tornado suplex and they fight on the middle rope. Huckabee pulls down Crummels from the second rope in a Gory Stretch and Darling bulldogs Crummels out of it, giving Huckabee a pinning opportunity. Defarge however breaks the pin. Defarge accidentally lariats Crummels. Huckabee hooks Defarge in a Stretch Muffler in the ropes as Darling puts Crummels in the Sharp Stinger. Crummels taps out at 6:16. This was a fun, high energy tag match. It felt like a truncated version of their tag title match from July, which isn’t a knock since the title match was quite good. It’s crazy to see how much these teams have improved over the season. **¾

Grand Championship
Juan Francisco de Coronado vs. Dasher Hatfield {T}

Juan Francisco de Coronado has been champion since 4.1.2017 and this is his eighth defense. Hatfield attacks Coronado before the bell, clotheslining him to the floor and following out with a suicide dive. Back in the ring, Coronado blinds Hatfield with his robe to turns things around with punches and forearms. Hatfield captures Coronado coming off the ropes in an abdominal stretch, striking Coronado’s mid-section at the same time. Coronado escapes a backslide attempt and tries a sunset flip. Hatfield counters that with a Magistral cradle for two. Coronado forearms Hatfield in his shoulder blades twice. He tries a running neckbreaker but Hatfield hooks him in the abdominal stretch again. Coronado unlaces Hatfield’s mask upon escaping. Hatfield pitches Coronado to the floor. Coronado counters a baseball slide by trapping Hatfield in the apron. Coronado suicide dives, converting into a DDT to Hatfield on the floor! In the ring, Coronado fails to apply the Coronado Clutch, so he settles for stomping down Hatfield in the corner. He continues to do damage to Hatfield’s shoulder blades and lower back, setting him up for the Coronado Clutch. Coronado scores a nearfall by uncharacteristically landing a Superfly Splash. The two of them knock each other down with stereo running forearm strikes, twice. Coroando strikes first after the fact with a dropkick, then goes back to the top turnbuckle. This time, Hatfield meets him and tosses Coronado down with a belly-to-belly superplex. Hatfield uses the ropes to break the knockout ten count, but as he’s getting up, Coronado double stomps his ribs. Coronado German suplexes Hatfield for two. He hooks Hatfield for the Tiger Driver, landing it for a two count. Coronado hits it a second time and again Hatfield gets his shoulder up before the three count. On the third attempt, Hatfield slips out into a sunset flip just like he did at “Dark Water” to pin Coronado, but this time Coronado kicks out and lays out Hatfield with a lariat. Coronado grabs the Ecuadorian flag, but Bryce Remsburg intercepts. Bryce also intercept when Coronado grabs the Grand Championship. As Bryce is disposing of the belt, Coronado cuts off the middle turnbuckle pad which he did at “Kill The Moon” against the Proletariat Boar. Bryce gets somebody to fix it. Coronado unlaces Hatfield’s mask further. Hatfield shoves Coronado away then goes for the Jackhammer. Coronado slips out. Hatfield gets whipped to the corner but halts Coronado with a hip toss into the corner. Hatfield hits the running Liger Bomb for two. Coronado tries a tumbleweed dive, but Hatfield catches him and hits the Cyclone neckbreaker for two. Coronado suplexes Hatfield into the turnbuckles. Hatfield fires up as Coronado pummels him with forearms. Hatfield gives Coronado a big shot to the stomach as Coronado comes off the ropes. Hatfield tries the Jackhammer again. Coronado front trips Hatfield looking for the Clutch. Hatfield kicks him away. Hatfield spins Coronado into the Jackhammer again. Coronado knees Hatfield to where Hatfield backs to the corner and releases. Coronado victory rolls Hatfield into the Coronado Clutch. Hatfield escapes and places Coronado on the top turnbuckle. He tries for the Grand Slam but Coronado again goes to the mask. Bryce reminds Coronado that he would be disqualified if he unmasked Hatfield, and Coronado does not care. However, Hatfield brings him down with the Grand Slam. Coronado gets his shoulder up right before three. Hatfield goes for the Jackhammer again. Coronado laces his legs around Hatfield’s to prevent it. Hatfield uses his strength to stop a German suplex. Coronado gets lifted for the Jackhammer. Coronado turns Hatfield’s mask around to blind him and brings him down in a small package for the pin at 21:17. This decision is nothing short of perplexing. Timing is everything in wrestling and this truly felt like Hatfield’s time to win the Grand Championship. It was a genuinely heartbreaking moment when he didn’t come out victorious. However, they did such a good job building him as a challenger that it made every nearfall hot. You really didn’t know who was going to win, but everybody wanted it to be Hatfield. Coronado’s old tricks didn’t work so he resorted to something else cheap to pull out the least likely victory of his title reign so far. The wrestling was top notch and had a big match feel. Even if the result doesn’t sit well with me, the match was really, really good. ****


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