Beware The Snowman

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Philadelphia, PA – 1.28.2018

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, Sidney Bakabella, Icarus, and Dasher Hatfield.

Oleg the Usurper vs. Kobald {LOR}

Kobald slaps Oleg in the face and gives him shots to the chest, but it angers Oleg more than it hurts him. Oleg shrugs off his forearm attacks and lands a Usurper kick. He pummels Oleg in the corner until Bryce forces Oleg away from the ropes. Kobald spears Oleg, but Oleg pops right back up! The second spear is more effective, but Oleg still gets up and splashes Kobald against the ropes. He chokeslams Kobald before splashing him in the corner. He picks up speed off the ropes before another corner splash and big boot. Oleg lands a somersault senton. Oleg hits Off With His Head! Kobald fires up after taking it and has a violence party on Oleg in the corner. He ends it with a pair of spears and a seated splash. Oleg rolls outside and Kobald falls with a high crossbody. In the ring, Kobald ascends the ropes, but Oleg goozles Kobald and brings him to the top turnbuckle. He brings Kobald down with a super chokeslam. After three more Off With His Head! strikes, Oleg pins Kobald at 6:02 for his third point. Given that Oleg helped set Kobald’s head straight with one Off With His Head, you have to wonder if four will affect Kobald in some way. Oleg definitively demolishing Kobald was a nice way to conclude this issue (or at least seemingly conclude it) but I appreciate that it wasn’t a totally one-sided contest either. **½

As Vlad Radinov is plugging the merchandise table, Race Jaxon comes out in the all white mask he was forced to wear after losing to Hype Rockwell last month. He unzips the mouth hole in his mask introduces himself as BLANK, saying that’s what we can now refer to him as. He challenges The Proletariat Boar of Moldova to a match at National Pro Wrestling Day next month. He zips his mask up and leaves.

Travis Huckabee vs. Gran Akuma

Icarus joins commentary for this match. Akuma refuses a handshake. Huckabee rolls out of Akuma’s wristlock. Akuma grounds him in a side headlock. Huckabee rolls Akuma to his shoulders to escape. Akuma trips Huckabee out of a hammerlock and figure fours his legs. Huckabee rolls out from that as well. He brings Akuma to the mat in a top wristlock. Akuma trips Huckabee into a toe hold, stepping on the other leg. Huckabee uses his feet to bring Akuma’s wrist to his level and re-applies the top wristlock. Akuma reverses. Huckabee uses a headstand to bring Akuma down in a headscissor. Akuma locks his hands to block cross armbreaker. He drops Huckabee out of a Kondo Clutch position. He kicks away at Huckabee’s legs before applying pressure to them on the mat. He pulls Huckabee away from the ropes and snaps his legs in a figure four. He puts Huckabee in the Romero Special, converting into the Dragon Sleeper. He releases it on his own. Huckabee shoves Akuma from the mat. Akuma overhand chops him before attempting an Irish whip. Huckabee weaves under and throws Akuma down by his arm. He hits a diving uppercut to Akuma’s shoulders and lands a belly-to-belly suplex for two. Akuma scoops Huckabee up into the MP4 for two. Akuma kicks Huckabee in his chest with Huckabee responding via forearm strikes. He uses a headbutt to stop Akuma’s onslaught. Akuma misses a high kick. He sets Huckabee up for a powerbomb which Huckabee turns into a jackknife pin. Akuma tries a suplex and Huckabee small packages Akuma for the pin at 8:48! Huckabee offers Akuma a post-match handshake. Akuma instead gives Huckabee a sole butt kick and fallaway kick to the face! This felt like the first of many battles to come, which is good news because this one was very fun. The small touches of Huckabee using moves from CHIKARA veterans of yesteryear (Claudio’s diving uppercut to the shoulders and Kingston’s belly to belly suplex) were a nice touch that speaks to him being a student of the game and knowing his history. Him being the first student to defeat Akuma upon his return sets him apart from the pack and Akuma comes off as a bully for attacking Huckabee after the bout. With Icarus on commentary during this match, we seem to have a great story brewing. **¾

The Proletariat Boar of Moldova vs. Cornelius Crummels

Crummels attacks Boar from behind. He chops and forearms Boar in the corner repeatedly. Boar shoves him away before throwing him back in the corner for his own series of strikes. Crummels hits a one-footed dropkick in the corner. Boar catches a splash and tosses Crummels overhead. Boar big boots Crummels in the corner. Crummels ducks a second boot and tries the Unprettier. Boar escapes. Boar pops Crummels to the top turnbuckle. Crummels dives off. In mid-air, the Boar hits the Gore for the pin at 1:39. Maybe the best sub two minute match I have seen. **¼

The Boar tells Scott Holladay that he accepts Blank’s challenge for National Pro Wrestling Day.

Elimination Match
Dasher Hatfield {T} & Mark Angelosetti {T} vs. Hallowicked {LOR} & Frightmare {LOR} vs. Jasper Tippins {DP} & Donald Kluger {DP} vs. Rick Roland & Sloan Caprice

Caprice keeps Tippins in a side headlock for a long time. He eventually escapes and tags Kluger in, but when Tippins blind tags back in, Caprice gets the hold right back on. Caprice hip tosses Tippins to the Closers corner. Tippins and Kluger use shoulder blocks to keep Caprice off of his feet and double clothesline him to the floor. Roland is sent out as well. The Legion of Rot attack Dez Peloton from behind, sending Kluger outside and isolating Tippins in their corner. Kluger helps Tippins to evade a corner attack from Frightmare and drags Frightmare outside as well. Hatfield pulls down Hallowicked into a pinning combination for two. Hatfield utilizes some armdrags and a double wrist clutch drag on Hallowicked before Angelosetti comes in with hard shoulder blocks to both Legion of Rot members back to back. It takes both Throwbacks to shoulder block Roland to the outside. The Throwbacks and Legion of Rot go through stereo Lucha sequences, leading to the Throwbacks stereo O’Connor rolling Hallowicked and Frightmare, then dropkicking them to the floor. The Closers shockingly pull off double Frankensteiners on the Throwbacks! Dez Peloton wipe them out with dual flying dropkicks. Dez Peloton swing Angelosetti out of a bucket toss onto his face. The Closers tag in as Angelosetti and Tippins fight for a slam and slam them both. Kluger comes back with a slam to Caprice. He also manages to back drop Roland to the floor. The Closers end up wiping all three teams out once they re-enter the ring, then do more damage on the floor. Hatfield wipes out Caprice and Hallowicked with a suicide dive to try and save his partner. Kluger pescado’s onto everybody but Frightmare and his own partner. Frightmare then dives onto everybody but Tippins. Tippins follows suit with a Swanton off the top turnbuckle. In the ring, Caprice suplexes Frightmare while DDTing Hatfield. Angelosetti drills Caprice with a running spinebuster. He reverse suplexes Hallowicked and follows up with a bulldog. Roland blocks Angelosetti’s Flea Flicker and drops him with a double neck hang slam. Tippins gives Roland a back cracker. Roland however boots Tippins as he comes off the top. Dez Peloton are stacked up for the Deal Breaker. It connects and Dez Peloton are eliminated at 16:50.

Frightmare clears the Closers out of the ring before Frightmare brings Angelosetti in from the apron with a middle rope suplex for two. Hallowicked super snapmares Angelosetti. Angelosetti rolls to the floor. Hatfield dumps Hallowicked outside and powerslams Frightmare. Hallowicked cracks Hatfield with a step-up enzuigiri right before he’s about to charge at Frightmare. Hatfield rolls through Hallowicked’s super snapmare attempt and baseball slide dropkicks Frightmare. Hatfield then wheelbarrows Hallowicked into a prawn hold for a pin, eliminating him and Frightmare at 18:22. Frightmare yakuza kicks Hatfield and gives him a crucifix driver before leaving. Caprice jumps onto Hatfield for a pin, but Hatfield manages to kick out. Caprice suplexes Hatfield before tagging in Roland. Roland attacks Hatfield in the corner. Hatfield brings Roland out with a running Liger bomb! Angelosetti tags in, mowing through Caprice with strikes before delivering a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and spinebuster. Roland breaks up the pin and big boots Angelosetti. Hatfield lights up Roland with a number of forearm strikes before tossing him overhead with a suplex. Hatfield fights out of Caprice’s F-10 and clotheslines him onto the entrance ramp. The Throwbacks hit Roland with the 3D. Caprice pulls Angelosetti out of the ring. Caprice punches Hatfield in the eyes before hitting the F-10. Roland follows up with a top rope moonsault for the pin and their third point at 22:20. We finally have challengers for the titles and it looks as if the issue between the Throwbacks and Legion of Rot is just getting started. While two key things were gleaned from this contest, the match itself was a chore. Until it came down to the last two teams it wasn’t very interesting and the teams seemed to be all over the place. Dez Peloton and The Closers looked rough on offense, which is a shame considering The Closers dominant performance at the finale. Hopefully they smooth out those edges before cashing in their points. There was no discernable reason this match needed to be 22 minutes long either. Despite liking the outcome, this a match you can avoid. **

Sloan Caprice tells Scott Holladay that playtime is over. With three points, the pathetic, dreadful run of Los Ice Creams have had as Campeones de Parejas will come to a close.

After intermission, Lucas Calhoun makes his way to the ring. After telling the Chikarmy that he missed them, he confirms the rumor that he is a clone. The implication there is that you’re a copy of another organism and that you are not unique. When he was slapped in the face with proof of this news a few months ago, he had to take the time to walk the Earth like Cain and sort of a few things out. He stops talking, figuring it’d be easier to show them what he’s talking about. He asks the audience to close their eyes and tells them to think about their favorite part of their favorite song. He wants them to focus on how that song makes them feel. That feeling is proof that they have a soul. It was that proof that informed him that he has a soul and that he is not just a carbon copy. He is his own man. However, he needed to find his purpose. His purpose became clear when Professor Nicodemus and his new science monsters showed up at “Closing Time” and got rid of one of his few friends, Missile Assault Man. With that, he asks for Jeremy Leary to come to the ring for a talk. Leary tells Calhoun he sounds a little salty, and he gets why: Calhoun is the old model and Leary is the upgrade. Despite the comment, Calhoun forgives him. He understands what motivated Leary. They’re part of the same common denominator: the “Volgar Quotient.” With no purpose, Leary tried to take what made Calhoun unique and make it a part of himself. He tells Leary he messed up when he let Professor Nicodemus and his monsters into the ring. He tells Leary he is being used. Like Calhoun was disposed of, Leary will eventually suffer the same fate. They are more than byproducts of science experiments. Calhoun says he and Leary need to stop Nicodemus; THAT is their purpose. He asks Leary if he’s with him. Leary shakes Calhoun’s hand to accept his proposition.

17 vs. Ophidian

Ophidian carries the old Ophidian’s mask out with his Cup. Ophidian ducks 17’s palm strikes. 17 absorbs Ophidian’s one footed dropkick and barely moves from Ophidian’s corkscrew enzuigiri. Ophidian headstands in the corner, giving 17 the opportunity to land the palm strike. He goes to further injure Ophidian with a crossbreaker and Ophidian gets the ropes quickly. 17 dips back to avoid Ophidian’s punches. He floats over after a suplex to attempt a cross armbreaker. Ophidian stacks him up for a pin. 17 escapes and pushes Ophidian to the corner. He rips away at Ophidian’s mask. 17 double underhook suplexes Ophidian. Ophidian batis 17 to the outside where he attempts double knees off the apron. 17 catches Ophidian, drops him face first on the apron, then applies an ankle lock! Ophidian escapes and whips 17 face first into the entrance set! Ophidian climbs up near a monitor and jumps off with a double stomp to the small of 17’s back! In the ring, Ophidian hits Chocolate Rain onto 17 for two. Ophidian drives the back of 17’s head into his knee cap twice before landing a step-up legdrop on the skull. He pumphandle suplexes 17 before climbing the ropes. Although Ophidian stops a palm strike, 17 throws Ophidian off the ropes by his leg and puts him in a modified STO. Ophidian rams 17’s head into the mat to escape. Ophidian lands the Blue Thunder Bomb. Ophidian’s 450 splash only gets a two count. Ophidian misses his headstand senton. 17 palm strikes Ophidian before tossing him out of a release powerbomb facebuster. He nails several running palm strikes to Ophidian in the corner. He pulls down Ophidian into a modified double wristlock/key lock. Ophidian uses the ropes to escape. He comes in from the apron with a headscissors. Ophidian hypnotizes 17 and brings him to the apron, the same way he won the Young Lions Cup from Razerhawk. 17 however gets his shoulder up from Ophidian’s pin, goozling him with one hand. Ophidian however is able to take down 17 with an Egyptian Destroyer. Despite all the head trauma, 17 kicks out. Ophidian tries the Cobra Clutch. 17 counters with Quackendriver I! As 17 recovers, Ophidian unmasks himself. The Whisper throws his Ophidian mask at 17 and tells him he had “already won” collapsing. 17 snaps the Whisper’s arm, then pummels him with forearm strikes until Bryce Remsburg calls for the bell at 15:23. Bryce rules the match a knockout victory for 17! Any time you have these types of situations, what most fans want in the end is a conclusion that leads to the characters coming back to their original personas. We not only got the here, but they incorporated the plot points that were placed along the way to get us to that conclusion. To an outsider, some of what occurred may seem goofy, but as somebody who followed the entirety of the story, it made sense. Part of me wonders if this should have been a castigo de excesivo call instead of a knockout, but it’s a moot point. I think this story helped The Whisper grow as a character and it makes me look forward to what he does next in the future. For a feud ending match, they did a very good job. ***¼

In the ring, 17 takes off his mask and puts on the Ophidian mask (discreetly so we never see his face. 17 has regained the Ophidian identity. He tells Scott Holladay that despite the changes, his motives have remain unchanged. At National Pro Wrestling Day, Frightmare will fall like The Whisper did.

Oceanea & Merlok vs. Hermit Crab & Cajun Crawdad

In case you missed it, Ashley Vox is now going under the person of Oceanea. Last month she bested Merlok and he bowed to her after the match. Oceanea looks at Merlok, who mows down Crab and Crawdad with simultaneous clotheslines. He splashes them repeatedly in opposite corners. Merlok lawn darts Crab into Crawdad. Oceanea requests a tag, but after looking at the two crustaceans, she tags Merlok back in to allow him to do further damage. After a double shoulder block, he again beats them down in opposing corners. A basement clothesline takes the wind out of Crab. Merlok slams Crawdad before slamming Crab on top of him. He lands a running senton on the both of him. Oceanea beckons Merlok to her for another tag. Before she can do anything, Crawdad pinches her shoulder. Merlok interjects, pouncing Crawdad out of the ring. Oceanea stomps down Crab in the corner. Crawdad and Crab end up digging their pincers into Merlok’s shoulders. They go for Low Tide but Merlok breaks free and shoulder blocks Crawdad. Crab kicks out Merlok’s legs. Crawdad pounds on his back before failing to pull off a Gator Roll. Merlok muscles up Crawdad and chucks him to the floor. He catches Crab’s crossbody and squishes him with a running Samoan Drop. Oceanea tags in and pins Crab. She purposefully picks up Crab before a two count. She smirks before fish hooking Crab in the mouth and tossing him to the corner. She smiles after giving Crab a facewash kick. She comes off the top with a senton and looks on the Reel Catch, causing Crab to tap out at 8:03. It’s very apparent from her actions, mannerisms, and bossing around of Merlok, that Oceanea may not be the Tecnico Ashley Vox was. I guess that’s what happens when you access your darker side. That revelation was the sole purpose of this bout. While I do enjoy watching Merlok beat people up, the crowd didn’t get into it, which I don’t blame them for considering it was basically a Rudo vs. Rudo match. Like the four way elimination bout, this accomplished what it needed to but wasn’t the most interesting contest. *½

Like Merlok did before them, Hermit Crab and Cajun Crawdad both choose to bend the knee to Oceanea. Oceanea heads to the back with her newly formed army of sea creatures.

Grand Championship
Juan Francisco de Coronado vs. Hype Rockwell

Juan Francisco de Coronado has been champion since 4.1.2017 and this is his ninth defense. Hatfield on commentary mentions his son, Junior Hatfield, has joined the Wrestle Factory. Coronado purposefully kills time on the outside of the ring once the bell rings. He eventually tries a German suplex. Rockwell resists that, and an armdrag, and slams Coronado across the ring. Coronado tries a headscissors, but Rockwell halts him mid-move and drops Coronado face and chest first into the mat. Coronado avoids a corner attack. He fails to monkey flip Rockwell, who places Coronado on the top rope. Rockwell was going to break away cleanly, but because Coronado slapped him, Rockwell shoves him to the floor instead. Coronado catches Rockwell with an enzuigiri from the floor. Rockwell uses his hands to block a stomp. He himself boots Coronado into the corner and tries a cannonball senton. Coronado moves out of the way and stomps the heck out of Rockwell, getting in his first bit of offense for this match. He does damage to Rockwell’s back. After doing some damage to Rockwell’s neck, Coronado comes off the top rope with a dropkick for two. Coronado applies a side headlock but gets tossed away. Rockwell gorilla presses Coronado up, but Coronado sneaks out and chop blocks Rockwell’s leg out. He then gives Rockwell a bridging German suplex for two. Rockwell kicks Coronado to the apron when Coronado goes for the Coronado Clutch. Coronado tries to come in with a springboard crossbody but gets caught in Rockwell’s arms for an overhead suplex. After a hip toss from the second rope, Rockwell spins out Coronado into a powerslam for two. Rockwell catches Coronado in the corner with a splash. He comes off the middle rope with a Vader Bomb for two. Coronado slides to the floor. Rockwell follows him out, and Coronado is able to give Rockwell a tornado DDT! Rockwell breaks the twenty count just in time. Coronado tries another tornado DDT in the ring. This time, Rockwell stops Coronado by placing him on the top turnbuckle. Coronado slides out from underneath. However, Rockwell catches Coronado coming off the ropes with the Hyperwheel! Coronado immediately rolls to the floor (either from inertia or on his own), meaning Rockwell can’t go for a pin. Rockwell tosses him inside. Coronado climbs to the top turnbuckle and holds onto the ring post, again trying to avoid a pinning predicament. Rockwell enzuigiri’s Coronado and follows him to the top turnbuckle. Coronado this time goes for a sunset bomb. Rockwell blocks. Coronado goes for his flag. Bryce notices and takes it away. While he’s disposing of the flag, Coronado low blows Rockwell and sunset bombs him. He pins Rockwell while putting his feet on the ropes, but only gets two! Coronado puts the Coronado Clutch on Rockwell. Rockwell’s arm drops three times and Coronado retains the title at 15:28. While the story and match were good, there was a never time I felt Rockwell truly stood a chance to win the title. There just simply wasn’t enough time between him returning to CHIKARA after his long absence and the title bout to make him seem credible. Commentary and Coronado put in an admirable effort in making him seem like a threat, and the crowd got behind him, but I can’t tell if that was because of the story of the match or the crowd just wanting Juan to lose the title. This was pretty much exactly the match I expected: a solid, but unspectacular, main event, and an odd follow up to Coronado’s defense against Hatfield at the finale. ***

Encore Match
Razerhawk {X2K} vs. Sonny Defarge

Razerhawk uses various armdrags and a neckdrag on Defarge. Defarge sneezes in Razerhawk’s face before sending him into the ropes. Razerhawk ducks a clothesline and headscissors Defarge outside. Razerhawk follows with a tope con hilo into a Frankensteiner. In the ring, Razerhawk pulls off another Frankensteiner and a second rope Xwanton bomb for two. Defarge catches Razerhawk’s back elbow attempt. Razerhawk is able to swing him into a crucifix pin for two. A small package does the same. Defarge blocks another Frankensteiner, but gets taken down in a huracanrana for two. Razerhawk delivers a back handspring enzuigiri before coming off the top with a Xwanton Bomb for the pin at 3:19. This was a heck of a lot of fun. Kudos to the Dirty Boys for pulling off two fun, fast paced matches on this show, and Razerhawk for keeping the energy of the crowd up. **

The post-credits scene shows a text conversation between Sloan Caprice and “The Boss.”

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One Response to Beware The Snowman

  1. Personally, I love the Oceanea persona and the Creatures of the Deep stable. I love the idea of a powerful woman WRESTLER leading a stable of male wrestlers. The only thing I don’t get is their designation as Rudos. How could you NOT sympathize with Ashley Vox’s roaring rampage of revenge against Merlok for his hurting her sister (Delmi) and her friend (Jawsolyn) and how it wasn’t until she followed Obariyon’s advice about finding the darkness within herself that she was able to get the revenge by making Merlok tap out? Oh, and I found the Crustaceans far too funny for me to ever boo them.

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