I came across DREAMWAVE while browsing at Smart Mark Video. After checking out their website, I took interest in the promotion and ordered some DVDs. This is a review of DREAMWAVE’s first show of 2011, which was also an iPPV.
Pre-Show Match: Marshe Rockett vs. Danny Cannon
Rockett mockingly offers a test of strength to his much shorter opponent. Cannon responds with a series of kicks and hits a corner spear. He snaps off a hurricanrana but Ryland Foxx gets involved. Rockett connects with a running yakuza kick and hits a rope-assisted DDT. Cannon tries a springboard maneuver but Rockett catches him with an ace crusher for the win at 2:44. Even at under three minutes, this was a fine pre-show match in that Rockett received a chance to showcase his athleticism and Cannon didn’t look terrible in the process. *
P.L. Meyers, Doc, and Iggy welcome us to the show (which was also an iPPV). They run down the card and send it to the ring…
Davey Richards makes his way to the ring for an interview. He says that he underestimated Jason Hades last time. Tonight, he will give Hades his full attention and the crowd is going to get a fight. Jason Hades interrupts and reminds Richards of his previous loss. Hades wants to make his name off of the best in the world. He offers Richards a handshake but it’s not accepted. They stare each other down and Hades holds up his title.
Opening Match: Dan Lawrence vs. Samuray Del Sol
Del Sol snaps off a few armdrags and connects with a dropkick. Lawrence steals a fan’s lucha mask and humorously attempts a cartwheel. He successfully grounds Del Sol and takes control. Del Sol dodges a flying crossbody and kicks Lawrence off the apron. He lands a springboard moonsault to the floor but misses a standing moonsault in the ring. Lawrence hits a neckbreaker but gets caught by a stunner. Lawrence sneaks in a rollup while holding Del Sol’s tights for the victory at 6:08. While they eventually established a solid rhythm down the stretch, I thought that this was a little tame for the opener of an iPPV. With that said, Lawrence is an enjoyable character and I’m curious to see what he can do against other members of the roster. **
Ace Martino and If Looks Could Kill are discussing strategies in the locker room. Martino tries a few pickup lines on a woman named Juliette, but she reminds him of how Scott Steiner made him tap out. Martino walks away in disgust.
Match #2: C.J. Esparza and Bret Gakiya vs. Bryce Benjamin and Joey Marx
Benjamin hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker on Esparza. He’s able to avoid some double teaming from Zero Gravity. Marx snaps off a hurricanrana on Gakiya and Benjamin adds a slingshot senton. Esparza blind tags into the match but gets sent to the floor. Marx lands a dive to the outside onto Zero Gravity. In the ring, Marx lands a standing shooting star press onto Esparza and Too Sweet isolate him. He fights back with a nasty lariat on Marx and makes the tag. Gakiya connects with double knees on Marx and lands a dive to the floor onto Benjamin. He connects with a missile dropkick on Marx for a close two count. Zero Gravity hit a springboard clothesline-russian leg sweep combination on Marx. Benjamin lures Gakiya to the floor and trades strikes with Esparza. Marx lands a springboard swantan onto Esparza for a nearfall. Gakiya interrupts a double team attempt from Too Sweet. Esparza connects with a shooting star elbow drop onto Benjamin for the win at 7:12. This match provided crazy action for the entire seven minutes and I don’t understand why this wasn’t the opener. I’ve seen what Zero Gravity can do in AAW but Too Sweet were able to hang with them as far as the excitement and crispness of their offense was concerned. In fact, these two teams effortlessly worked well together and the resulting action blew away my expectations. ***
The Beck Family attack Zero Gravity after the match. Waylon Beck puts both members of Zero Gravity through a table and the Beck Family stand tall.
The A-List are joking around in the locker room. Nick Brubaker becomes serious and asks Ryland Foxx if he has his insurance policy for tonight. Foxx tries to enter Kevin Nash’s locker room and eventually bribes the guards to gain entrance.
Match #3: Acid vs. Ace Martino
Acid hits a spinning gourdbuster. Martino blocks corner punches with an eye rake and connects with a northern lariat. Acid fights back with a clothesline, sending both men to the floor. Acid connects with repeated punches in the crowd and lets a fan get in on the action. In the ring, Martino hits a chinbreaker along with a northern lights suplex. Acid responds with a lungblower for the victory at 5:52. Martino was essentially used as a foil for Acid, who is ridiculously over with the LaSalle crowd. There wasn’t much holding this match together but I’m curious to see how Acid progresses in the coming months. *½
After the match, Acid says that he plans on cashing in his Good As Gold briefcase pretty soon.
Match #4: Colt Cabana vs. Juice
Cabana interrupts a “musical performance” from Juice with his entrance. Cabana starts singing but Juice attacks him before the opening bell. Cabana snaps off a headscissors and Juice takes some time to regroup. Cabana lands a flying crossbody and follows with a series of palm strikes. A distraction by Ryland Foxx allows Juice to hit a belly to belly suplex. He takes control until Cabana avoids a senton and lands a springboard moonsault. Cabana hits the flying asshole but gets pushed into the referee. Juice lays him out with a spinebuster. Interference from Foxx goes awry and Cabana sneaks in a rollup for the win at 7:11. This was pretty much your basic Cabana comedy match but it worked with the crowd. Juice is a polarizing character but he won’t overstay his welcome if he’s used in shorter undercard matches. *¾
Foxx doesn’t appreciate Cabana treating the A-List like it’s a joke. He introduces the newest member of the A-List…KEVIN NASH! Everyone corners Cabana in the ring. Nash throws Juice to the floor and turns on Foxx. Nash lays out Foxx with a jackknife powerbomb. It’s definitely an interesting scene as Cabana and Nash celebrate together.
Match #6: Austin Roberts vs. Steve Boz vs. Nick Brubaker
The winner will become the #1 contender for the DREAMWAVE World Title. Boz and Roberts stare each other down. Brubaker tries to take advantage to no avail. Boz snaps off a hurricanrana on Roberts and connects with a dropkick. Brubaker catches Boz with a springboard enzuigiri and takes down Roberts with a shotgun dropkick. Boz lands a flying crossbody onto Brubaker but gets caught by an enzuigiri. Brubaker is able to keep both of his opponents neutralized until he ends up on the bad end of a tower of doom spot in the corner. All three men are down. Boz hits a swinging flatliner on Brubaker but gets planted by a uranagi from Roberts. Brubaker hits a fisherman suplex on Roberts but runs into a gamenguiri from Boz. Boz sets up for a superkick but the lights go out. When the lights come back on, Brubaker is nowhere to be found and Roberts is holding a mask. Roberts hits a DDT on Boz for the victory at 8:59. The focus of this match was clearly on the issue between Roberts and Boz so the finish made sense. They managed to fill their nine minutes with consistently entertaining action and everyone received a chance to shine. While a few more minutes wouldn’t have hurt, I think this match accomplished its goal of kicking the Roberts/Boz feud into a higher gear. **¾
Richards puts the title across Hades’ shoulder and shakes his hand. He heads to the back as Hades celebrates in the ring. The lights go out and Yabo the Clown makes his way to the ring. A mysterious figure follows him who is revealed to be Kevin Thorn when he enters the ring. Yabo attacks Hades from behind and Thorn puts him in a splash mountain position. Richards comes back out to make the save. Thorn steals the DREAMWAVE World Title and slowly walks away. Richards grabs the microphone and says that DREAMWAVE is about wrestling, not sneak attacks. Yabo attacks Hades once again but Richards hits him with a chair. Richards says that he will never be friends with Hades but offers him help against Yabo and Thorn. Hades challenges Thorn to a match and thanks the crowd to close the show.
Overall: Season Premiere was a solid introduction to DREAMWAVE, as the show gave a sense as to who the main players in the promotion will be in the months to come. A lot of the undercard matches could have used more time but Zero Gravity and Too Sweet were able to deliver a worthwhile exhibition. The main event was fittingly the match of the night and the post-match angle was handled well. Based on match quality alone, I’m at a thumbs in the middle leaning down. However, this show set in motion some interesting storylines moving forward and I’m interested to see where DREAMWAVE goes from here.
Ryan Rozanskii has been a professional wrestling fan since he was six years old. His first memory of it comes from witnessing Scott Hall win a sixty-man battle royal at WCW World War 3. Of course, that was before alcohol became a problem for Scott. Speaking of alcohol, Ryan is a youngster…not even old enough to consume alcoholic beverages. However, Ryan has used swear words to describe how much he loves Pro Wrestling Ponderings. That is something he’ll never try again, due to the risk of possibly being grounded by his parents. Some people compare Ryan to Butters from South Park. Currently, that comparison has yet to have any legitimacy.
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