Review: ICW Fear And Loathing 9 AT THE HYDRO

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From 30 people in Maryhill to 6200 in The Hydro. A fairytale. Rags to riches. Cindarella story. Started from the bottom now we here. Community centres to nightclubs to really big nightclubs to iconic music venues to really big iconic music venues to fuckin full scale arenas. You’ve heard it all before. If you were looking for anything any different from this review I’m afraid you’ll be sorely disappointed. The reason you’ve heard that patter a lot is because it IS amazing what ICW have done. This show happening at all represented monumental triumph not for British Wrestling, not even for Scottish Wrestling, it was a monumental triumph for ICW. For the people who worked tirelessly to get ICW to this point. The fact that it undoubtedly has a knock on effect for the rest of the scene is nice and important but it’s not the whole scene who get to bask in the glow of this. This is for the daft cunts who put their bodies and sanity on the line to make this happen. This was their night. They represented ICW above everything else and showed the world what ICW was all about. No it wasn’t the best ICW show ever. In fact ICW have run and will run better wrestling shows, but it was a remarkable spectacle and a fuckin good wrestling show to boot. A night to be proud of and a launching pad on the way to selling the fucker oot in a years time for Fear and Loathing 10.

It started with a Finn

The only thing more beautiful than Surprise Dev….sorry auld habits n that…Surpise Balor, is a Balor that you were very much expecting. Surprise Balor would have been nice, but the first time it happened I literally had to peel myself aff the fuckin floor. In case your new to this site or new to the concept of having functional eyes, Finn Bfinnalor is an attractive man. I’m burd daft mate. Love them. Boobs n that. Boobs aw day. But Finn is the exception. You are a died in the wool lying bastard if you can tell me with a straight face no matter what way you swing that ye widnae scran melted chocolate buttons aff that boys abs. In all seriousness but, it was so very beautiful to see him back in an ICW ring. Something I genuinely never thought would happen again. Not because he told us a lie when he said “It’s not goodbye, it’s just see ya later” he would never lie to us, but I just assumed it was modesty at play and he didn’t actually realise WWE would want to employ him forever and ever. They still do employ him btw, yet there he was, in some parallel universe where ICW run The Hydro and WWE allow contracted performers to appear elsewhere. Like a dream kiddin on its a human being. Balors Irish Dream. He spoke of not wanting to let cunts run riot in the company he loves and that he’d be behind that curtain dishing oot doings to anyone who tries it.

Joe Hendry vs Davey Blaze

This was always supposed to happen eh. Nae offence to “The Local Fire” but that’s a stupit name for a team that never did make a lot of sense. Two guys with completely different sets of ideals teaming for tenuous reasons. Perhaps more unnatural than that, a guy fae Glesga teaming wae a guy fae Embra! Like if Jack Jester suddenly started teaming with Solar or suhin ridiculous like that, you’d know fine well joehemian.jpgthe whole thing was gonnae end with Jester tombstoning him through the centre of the earth. Davey came out first and looked mean because he’s a baddie now, meaning he gets to use the Davey Blaze name and gets to wear the Davey Blaze pants. All very Blaze indeed. He looks exponentially more raging than he ever did and that’s nae mean feat cause he’s always at least a bit raging at something. Joe emerged to his own version of Bohemenian Rhapsody which was pretty fucking wonderful. As much as he wouldn’t much like the injection of profanity there, so fuck mate. I’ll fuckin describe yer brilliant entrance any fuckin way I want. It was heavy good, and the four Hendry heads looking at and interacting with each other was hilarious. It was all a ripping good time then a wrestling match broke out and ruined it aw.

Davey dominated the early exchanges, controlling the bout with jabs and calling people in the front row nasty names. He had Joe in a pretty sare looking Guillotine choke on the outside before Joe reversed it into a superb suplex on the ramp. Joe kept getting distracted by The Wee Man which gave Davey many opening to do many spears. He went up top and got caught and fallaway slammed to buggery because that’s not your forte Davey pal. Only time you should be up there is when you want absolutely everyone in the building to see you grabbing yer crotch as opposed to those just at eye level. While we’re on about crotches, I know he’s from Edinburgh but I’m absolutely not having Joe Hendry continually referring to Davey’s dick as his “Bobby” cause people fae Edinburgh definitely say “Boaby” mate. Even if they say it a bit funny, they say it. Naecunt calls it a Bobby.

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Joe gained the upper hand with that mad palmstrike thing he does which I’m very much intae. Its very street fighter as fuck, but Davey’s retort of a kick to the baws was very street fight as fuck. It was all fun and games until Joe took Davey up the top rope and tossed him clean over his heid for the win. A decent opener, and the right spot for Joe’s entrance to be in for sure. Wee Man took a fallaway slam before Davey took Wee Man up the road and Joe was left to soak in the adulation of the adoring public.

Carmel Jacob vs Kay Lee Ray vs Viper (ICW Women’s Title Match)

Kay Lee. Kay Lee. Kay Lee fuckin Ray ‘mate. I know her and Stevie are the fuckin dirtiest baddest baddies on the roster/residing on earth right now but this was their night and it was terrific to see them shine on the biggest stage ICW has ever appeared on. Viper emerged next and I’m nae lipreader but she definitely said “wow” when she went up to the second rope to have a good look at the crowd and that’s just so fuckin nice is it no. A unique moment on a special night. A lassie who’s wrestled all over the globe fuckin gobsmacked at the magnitude of this moment in her home country. The champ followed and if I knew this was the end I’d have greeted it so differently. Don’t go. No yet. There’s still so many more folk who need yer vitriol on the mic. So many more burds and the occasional guy who need DDT’d in tae next week.

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She went out on the very top and that’s really sound anaw. Went out as a bad bastard who eviscerates folk on the mic because as nice as it was to be able to cheer her for a bit when she was a goodie, that’s what she was put in out wee wrestling universe to be. Vicious. A killer. Up there with the very best when it comes to saying words and sounding like she fuckin MEANS them. When she stoated out at There’s Something About Maryhill with a mic in hand back in 2013, few were prepared for her to captivate them the way that she did. As a relatively new fan I’d only ever seen her in one or two matches and wasn’t fully aware of how good she could be on the mic and what she done that night blew me away. She’d take to the mic one last time for her final moments as a pro wrestler, but not before she fell on her sword one last time.

Kay Lee and Carmel were unthinkably on the same page for much of the early stages. Both stomping fuck out of Vipers bad knee and looking pure ragin’ about it. It was never lasting though. As much as they take pride in being the originators of women’s wrestling in Scotland, they take even more pride in being able to batter fuck out each other in spectacular and engaging ways. Them joining forces started to backfire quickly, Viper managing to regain her vertical base enough to lose it voluntarily in the form of a cross body which leathered both opponents. Viper then hit Randy Orton’s Chauffeur (The Viper Driver…see whit I did there? Wis pure shite eh?) only for Kay Lee to break it up with a Swanton. She was not to be denied on this night. ICW have only had a Women’s Title for a year now but she’s been the Women’s Champ for far longer. Nae disrespect to anyone else at all, but no woman in the company has been as integral to its growth as her and no other woman in the company got chucked like a fuckin dart by Mikey Whiplash, only to go on and STILL beat the cunt, so she deserved the moment. She deserved the recognition. She was well overdue the shiny shiny gold.

A nice wee three person german suplex thing happened in the corner, before Carmel lulled Viper in by pretending her knee was sare again only to take the knee brace off and crack her with it. Devious till the bitter end eh Carmel. Why be any other way when yer so fuckin good at being that. Kay Lee stopped the pin and weirdly seemed in control the whole way. With both opponents selling knee injuries she just seemed in control, not something that happens a lot in triple threat matches but it always felt like it was going to be hers. Viper was valiant. Carmel gave it all she had in her last ever match, but it was never their night.

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It was my favourite finish of the night anaw. Nae ambiguity at all. Kay Lee was hitting mad Gory Bombs on Carmel in the ring, knowing each one was putting her that bit closer to the title but she was smashing Viper on the outside with all sorts of suicide dives, keeping Viper at bay, making sure it was hers. It needed to be, and after a third Gory Bomb it was all over.

Carmel took the mic and basically told us she was done. The words “I retire” never came out her mouth so that leaves some hope that one day we’ll see her back but her words seemed to mean, at least for now, she’s gone. She bigged Kay Lee up about as much as you legally can big up a dirty heel because it made sense. It worked. If she’s gone and has had this sworn enemy for the duration of her time with the company, its only right that the person she done her best ever work with is a vital part of her exit speech, and she’s not fucking wrong. As talented as so many of these wrestlers are, especially Viper, for me Kay Lee Ray is a talent unmatched in the UK and I cannae fuckin wait to see what she does with that belt. Send aw yer best burds. See if they’ve got what it takes to take the title off a woman who would just as quickly stab ye in the neck as she would Swanton ye to keep a hold of that shiny shiny belt.

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If it is truly the end for Carmel, its been a pleasure watching her do her thing for the past 4 years. One of my personal favourites and while she’s entitled to her opinion that she no longer belongs in the same ring as the likes of Viper and Kay Lee, I’m gonnae have to respectfully disagree.

Stevie Boy vs BT Gunn (Casket Match)

In the lead up to the show, this was my favourite match on paper, for the simple as fuck reason that its BT Gunn vs Stevie Boy in the fuckin Hydro mate. A matchup that never has any prospect of being anything short of excellent. Two of the best we have in front of  a beautifully massive crowd of 6200. For all the chat about imports, the first three matches was made up of exclusively Scottish performers. Infact see the negative patter about the “imports” , it smells like import snobbery. If it was The Young Bucks instead of The Dudleyz and Adam Cole instead of Angle naecunt would have batted an eyelid about it, but because its big names, the show’s relying on imports to sell it. A crock of pure jobby that patter is. Stevie Boy got the jump on BT by waiting on him halfway up the ramp as soon as his entrance music hit, but BT had the pre-emptive jump on Stevie by literally jumping on him. As the casket had been rolled out and was dwelling ominously behind Stevie, mad BT jumped right out it and all of a sudden we went fae 0 to cunts smashing each other in 0.2 seconds.

BT was close to falling in the casket as Stevie performed various moves with this eventuality being his end game I assume. In other words, yer man wis tryin’ lit a berr so he wis. BT would not yield and got back into the ring via a mad spear through (pictured below by the talented gent known as David J.Wilson) the ropes before a mutual scudding session was ended when BT straight up jabbed Stevie. This was nae sort of wrestling “strike” this was a man punching another man square on the fuckin jaw, and that man going down to one knee in anguish. Startled by said scudding. A Canadian Destroyer nearly ended BTs night but he managed to poke a foot out the casket. I actually heavy enjoyed all the wee casket spots. Maybe that type of shit isnae for everyone, but I liked BT dragging Stevie back in when they were both in the casket and Stevie tried to escape. I liked that when the lid was shut for a while, instead of thinking they were in there trying to kill each other the crowd started chanting “Shaaaaaaaaaaaaggin” cause imagine they wur mate. Biggest show of their lives and they’re shaggin in a coffin. Only in ICW eh.

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They weren’t shagging, but they climbed out from doing whatever demented shit they were doing in there to get in about some sublime wrestling stuff. All sorts of mad kicks gettin slung towards each others jaws. BT tried to lure Stevie in to the casket with a handful of scud books, a wee satchel fulla tenner eccies and some pieces n jam but to no avail. Disappointed by his inability to end the match there and then, BT decided to just scramble the cunt’s brains with a superkick instead. Ye cannae be filthy as fuck with the most bangin entrance music ever if you’ve no got a brain. Luckily for him he shares that music with the new ICW Womens Champion. A fine set of hauners to have indeed. Out came the champ to tip it in Stevie’s favour, but BT was wise to it and hit them with a double springboard cutter. He’s played this game before and won but it wasn’t to be at The Hydro. They had too much. Kay Lee cracked him over the nut with a chair and as BT hung perilously on the top rope, Stevie powerbombed him on top of the casket, and calmly rolled BT inside. Closing the lid for a career defining win. 

Thought they both fuckin nailed it, there were some daft bits centred around the casket but that’s exactly what casket matches are and have always been. It still doesn’t detract from what was an excellent bit of storytelling and a huge power move seeing Kay Lee winning the title in one match followed by Stevie beating one of the best performers in the UK in the following match. The Filthy Generation are proof that the NAK split was the right thing, as they are now primed and ready to become key figures in ICW for a long time to come. The other guy who left the NAK that night has done no bad for himself either eh. Carries about a right big shiny thing and knocks cunts out for fun. Point is, its a story and Stevie and Kay Lee have carved out a beautiful, almost tragic end to theirs. Tragic for Carmel and Viper, one losing a title and a career the other seeing a moment that could have been hers snatched from her. Tragic for BT Gunn as he saw his protege and former best pal shove him into a coffin and close the lid. The only folk who didn’t  see their story end in anguish was Stevie and KLR themselves. A pair of low down dirty hooligans who combine their disregard for all human life that isnt their own with a fuckin abundance of wrestling talent. The Natural Born Thrillers.

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Polo Promotions vs The Dudley Boyz (ICW Tag Team Title Match)

Polo Promotions are already masters of the tag team craft, the only issue standing between them and being widely recognised as one of the best tag teams in the world is matches like this. Matches where big names get put to the sword. Matches that your casual every day fan forum dweller knows all about. It was enjoyable to hear Bubba on the mic bigging up both the match and Polo Promotions but it was all undone by him ending it with “Lets make it an No DQ!” in a company where every match is no DQ. That’s like getting to 90 minutes in the World Cup Final at 0-0, grabbing a mic and going “We don’t want this to end on a draw do we?! LETS GO TO EXTRA TIME” That was always happening anyway Bubba ma man. Cheers for yer input anyway. No DQ it was!

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It was a decent brawl to start with, after the Polo’s jumped on Bubba and D-Von, I assume to stop Bubba getting back on the mic and digging himself an even bigger hole by talking about how happy he is to be in Glasgow, England or suhin else daft.  The Dudleyz were on top early and D-Von even looked not completely puffed out for a spell. Rolling back the years with a pouncing neckbreaker and a shscoopsoulder tackle where he actually got a few feet off the ground. Polo derailed their wee renaissance with a double clothesline and subsequently scooped the ever loving shite out of the pair of them. So many Dudley scoops. Even Spike Dudley sponteanously stood up and scooped himself through the coffee table in his house. Wife had him committed so she did. Thought he was having Vietnam style flashbacks.

Folk have had a lot to say about the finish to this and obviously the 3D that didn’t happen was supposed to go some kind of other way. It was either badly mistimed or someone missed their cue but who the fuck cares man? Genuinely. No one knows exactly what was planned and no one will ever know because its not our fucking place to know. Its our place to reflect on what actually happened and what actually happened is Jackie Polo hit a spine shattering scoop slam on D-Von, that scoop slam landed on top of a steel chair and that was enough to put the most decorated team in tag team history to the sword. Game, set and STILL champs. 

For some reason after the match Davey and The Wee Man decided to take a saunter down to a ring that contained zero allies. Essentially the ring was full of Bloods, and Davey in his wee blue crip pants was like a red rag to a team of bulls. The Dudleyz urged Jackie and Mark to “GET THE TABLES” and they duly obliged. I suppose if Foley couldnae make it there was a cheap pop quota that needed met so it was to be expected, and an assisted powerbomb from Team 3D put Davey through the table. A wee moment of glory for the legends, but the real glory goes to the best tag team in Europe. Yer scoop slammin, cigar smokin, snug workin, leaders of the revolution and STILL your ICW Tag Team Champions. The undisputed Da’s of European tag team wrestling. Polo Promotions.

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Lionheart vs Aaron Echo vs Zack Gibson vs Liam Thomson vs Andy Wild vs Kenny Williams (Stairway To Heaven Match For The Zero-G Title)

Lionheart has been unrivalled lately and fully deserved the position he found himself in going in to the show. The fuckin Zero-G king. Considering they were competing for a belt called Zero-G the match was absolutely fuckin brimming wae gravity. A lot of big lads in there and Liam Thomson isnae exactly a high flyer, he does do a mean missile dropkick but none of yer 470 dragonfly senton moonsaults n aw that. The match had a fresh injection of Zero-G’ness when Mick Foley appeared on the screen to reveal that the match would have a seventh competitor. A man who lost his qualifier in dubious circumstances, and a man who’s been down on his luck lately. A man who wasn’t even on the card for the biggest show in Universal wrestling history. The biggest show in the history of sport. He wasn’t even invited to the party, so he had one of his own. Up a ladder with a shiny belt in his grasp.

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The match unfolded at a frantic pace and was one of the more eye catching matches of the night. Iestyn Rees and Aaron Echo both cleared the top rope with a pair of stoatin’ dives, before Lionheart superplexed Kenny off the top rope to a waiting group of bodies on the outside. Thank fuck they were where they were supposed to be, because if naecunt caught them, there would be a Kenny shaped hope in the Hydro floor for the rest of time and a new finish to this match due to one of the folk involved in it being incapacitated with a bad case of clinical deidness. Zack Gibson was the first man eliminated, which saddened me as he’s a huge talent. My personal favourite of the English talents that are occasionally utilised by ICW. At the same time it was nice to see Liam Thomson pin someone in The Hydro and his Backcracker out of the corner is a thing of beauty, so it was nice to see both Liam Thomson and that move looking as dyno’ as possible.

His reign as the king of dyno hings was short lived however, as the bold Andy Wild eliminated him with that sexy situout powerbomb he always delivers with aplomb. Lets take a wee moment to appreciate Andy Wild eh. Came from nowhere to earn a spot on this show and not only that, but came from nowhere to deservedly re-take a spot on the regular ICW roster. Hats off to the big man, and how beautiful would it be if this wee story ended with him becoming a 2 time Zero-G Champion? He got in amongst it with Aaron Echo after that. The man who earned his spot in the match the night before with a win over Ravie Davieawild and he showed he was more than worth the spot with an excellent showing. Beauty of a spinning forearm sent Wild into a daze, but big Iestyn Rees is always about the spoil the party. He only very recently won me over, and doing things like pinning Aaron Echo is a fine way to find yersell jumping straight out of the good books so it is. Remember when yees both done a mad dive together? Remember the glory days? Iestyn Ree clearly does not and we were down to the final four.

Aaron Echo and Kenny Williams are big pals, so fucking with one may lead to the wrath of the other. Even though Lionheart seemed to have big Iestyn under control, Kenny wanted to be the one to pap him out and duly was as he broke up Lionheart’s Styles Clash attempt before pinning Rees with the Quiff Buster DDT. Andy Wild was still in there keeping the fairytale alive, but three became two after a superkick followed by a rock bottom from Hearto put Andy away. A sare yin, but there’s no doubt Andy Wild is back and looking even better than ever since his win over Noam Dar. This wasn’t a wee nostalgia booking, this is a talented guy firmly re-establishing himself and that’s just fuckin beautiful is it no? We were down to two though. Of course we were. It could only be them. It could only end this way. Lionheart standing toe to toe with the natural air to the Zero-G throne. The fuckin bollocks.

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Everyone involved in the match deserved to have a spot on The Hydro show so the match made sense and was loaded with entertaining moments. Aaron Echo’s performance had already drawn huge amounts of praise for a very talented guy, but this is the feud. This has always been the thing that needed some kind of resolution and you have to give big Hearto credit for for being that constant thorn in Kenny’s side. The architect of his demise was also the launching pad for probably his best moment in ICW. They slung mad jabs at each other before Kenny took the upper hand by booting a set of ladders in to Lionhearts face. Lionheart’s retort was making a bollocks shaped hole in a mad giant set of ladders. A Rock Bottom while they both battled up a set of ladders each followed that, well and truly bursting Kenny and leading to the debut of his new gimmick. #BURST Kenny Williams coming to a show near you, gibbering about how he’s gonnae delete his brerr and how dyno xylophones are. He didn’t stay burst for long, as Hearto climbed that big banana ladder for another notch on the winpost ,Kenny was having none of it. It’s been Lionheart’s year but this wasn’t his night. The people needed to pop for The Bollocks, and The Bollocks did indeed pop moments later. Kenny hit a mad springboard cutter on Lionheart as he climbed the ladder before managing to rush up and grab the gold. Your new Zero-G Champion. 

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Hugely entertaining scrap if a bit short. Would have liked to see a bit more of Gibson forearming fuck out of folk but hopefully there’s more ICW’ing in his future. Cannae believe how much big Iestyn Rees has won me over, wee bit wary saying it too much cause he’s proper massive and might see fit to leather me but he was one of the guys I just didn’t get. The whole comparison with Masters and never liking Masters fucked it for him but he has improved a huge amount since his early PWE days and has earned his spot on the roster. Hopefully 2017 is injury free and full of backcrackers for Liam Thomson and it was nice to see him revive an auld feud when him and Andy Wild leathered each other but arguably the biggest impression made from the other 5 guys was big Aaron Echo making absolutely every moment of his time in the match matter. That’s the thing that sets him apart from the rest of the “new” talent in this country. His work in the ring is constantly engaging and everything fuckin matters. Nae wasted motion. If he doesn’t add his name to the list of Zero-G champions by the end of 2017 there’s something no right. He might need to get behind the rapid resugrence of Andy Wild in the queue, as he chases a second reign that would have looked impossible a year ago, but it was Kennys night and after 3 years of show stealing performances and constant improvement no one could begrudge him that.  His biggest challenge might just be the guy who stole the show in the very next match.

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Lewis Girvan vs Ricochet

It was a night with a lot of big moments. Career defining. Long storylines ending, and new ones beginning. Monumental shit. Arguably the match that had the least on the line storyline wise proved to be the very best contest of the night and probably done more for Lewis Girvan’s career than any other performance done for anyone else on the night. In there with one of the darlings of Indie wrestling in one of the biggest, most widely viewed shows in Indie Wrestling history and Lewis Girvan fuckin nailed it. 180 (darts), 147 (thats the highest break in snooker btw, we’re doing a thing here, bear with me), the perfect hat-trick, first place in the formula one race, the gold medal, the gold standard Shelton Bejamin, to be the best you’ve got to beat the best and Lewis Girvan knocked off a fuckin massive talent that I perhaps didn’t fully appreciate until having the pleasure of seeing him wrestle two nights in a row and thinking “I don’t know what the fuck he just did there, but I know I liked it”

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Ricochet fired out a wee tweet a few days before the match about being excited for the show even if he was down the bottom of the poster. Tongue in cheek for sure but perhaps the reaction to it gave him a wee insight in to how passionate ICWs fanbase can be. Don’t get wide mate, yer lucky ye even got the shout to be on the show and so whit if ye were amazin? Yer nae Bob Holly pal. Wind it in. He kicked the contest off by kneeing Lewis Girvan to the outside before nailing him with a suicide dive and a made springbaord dive into the crowd. This was approximately 2.75 seconds in to the match and that tells you all you need to know about Ricochet’s rapid skills. Followed that up with a springboard 450 like it was fuck all. Girvan imposed himself on it with a lovely wee hurricanrana followed by his own version of mad high flying shit as he set Ricochetgirv2 up on the barrier before going up top and landing on him with an emphatic knee to the melt. Givan’s not about the 720 corkscrew flippedy dippedy stuff but his work is flawless and the mesh of styles was lovely to watch. Tap wrestling stuff right here.

Standing shooting star press reversed into a traingle choke by Girvan was beautiful to watch. The whole thing was just joyful mate. They smashed each other with elbows, forearms, lariats, knees to the baw, Girvan pulled out a BB Gun and fired a few rounds in to Richochets temple, Richochet responded with a 540 shotgun blast to the melt. Beautifully choreographed wrestling warfare. Richochet fired about 70 kicks at Girvan in about 3 seconds before nailing a deadlift back suplex type thing because he also happens to be a fuckin tank on top of all the mad flippy goodness.

His next attempt at flippy goodness was reversed into a codebreaker from Girvan and from that point on it was always his. A Blue Thunder Bomb followed by a pin was reversed into a Crossface from Girvan and after a long sequence of Ricochet trying to get out of that Crossface to no avail he had no choice but to tap. He did manage to gain enough separation to go for the 630 splash but it missed, and after a cracking spike DDT the crossface was locked back in. It was more of a vicegrip than a submission hold and its hard to wrestle at the speed of life if you’ve been choked to death by Lewis Girvan so he made the right call tapping when he did. He lives to fight another day. Hopefully some of those days will happen in ICW. Even if we all need to invest in hard hats so he can fly all over the joint whatever way he wants.

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Its been a pleasure to see Girvan find his “thing” in wrestling. He’s been around ICW for 4 years and was always a reliable go to guy for a good match on any card but recently he’s found that connection with the audience that was maybe missing at times. A terrific display on ICWs biggest night will only strengthen his spot and him vs Kenny Williams for the Zero-G will be majestic when it eventually happens. For all the “best young wrestler” patter was used to rip the piss out him at times, he stuck with it and its caught on. Excited to see what 2017 brings for a guy who started off 2016 by repeatedly smashing folk in bollocks as part of the square go, in 2017 he’ll be looking to smash a different kind of bollocks to finally get the Zero-G crown he’s coveted for so long.

Wolfgang vs Trent Seven (ICW Title Match)

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Wolfgang is The Undertaker of ICW. That’s not just because they both like driving a motorbike roon the ring. Its not because they both love shaggin deed bodies. Its not even because they both favour a goatee beard over other types of beard its because no matter the character he protrays or the story he’s telling, you can rely on him to be central to any ICW show he’s on. With or without that shiny belt, he’s an icon in this company. With or without catchy Duran Duran entrance music, he’s one of the best performers in the companies history and on a historic night it was only right that he went in as the companies champion. When the big occasion comes, Wolfgang delivers and he was the perfect, unassuming, dangerous baddie to counteract Trent Seven’s overwhelming popularity. Trent had an army made up of more nations than Seven behind him for this one, but folk might have forgot, Wolfgang fuckin runs Glesga. This is his yard, and that steel structure they were stepping in to is his domain. If Trent was going to take that belt from Wolfgang his night would have to be a flawless one. He’d need to stick to the gameplan and no matter what the big bad bastard flung at him, he’d need to get up and show him it wasn’t enough. Most importantly, he’d have to stay true to everything that brought him this opportunity in the first place. Spectacular beard, spectcular principles, and making smart, well timed moves to bring the opportunities he needed to move into position for the title shot. The worst thing he could possibly do is play Wolfgang at his own game, because its his fuckin game mate. He wins. Always.

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Trent entered to a wonderfully passionate reception and felt the full power of 6000 behind him, but Wolfgang entered on a motorbike and motorbikes are cool so first blood to Wolfy. Trent wasn’t for fucking about and met Wolfy before he even got in the cage, before they battled their way IN to a 20 foot tall deathtrap. Perhaps an indicator as to where they both are sanity wise, but this is for the World Title mate. Sanity disnae matter a buggery. They started the war by trading Germans. Wolfgang swapping his Bastian Schwiensteiger sticker for Trents Jurgen Klinsmann limited edition shiny. Or suplexes. Whatever makes more sense in a wrestling context. A popup powerbomb had Wolfy in control before he broke out the gold plated demon that managed to topple an army. The brass knuckles that have claimed so many bodies in Wolfgang’s reign added another name to the list but this entrant entered his own name by playing Wolfy at his own game. He managed to get the knuckles and knocked Wolfys two front teeth out with a cracker of a shot, catching them in his back pocket so he could use them to kid on he’s a walrus later before hitting a spinless piledriver for a two count. Aye. Knuckle shot then a piledriver only got a 2. For all the momentum Trent carried in to this, he carried that momentum in to the moment Wolfgang had dreamt about from way before Trent would have even heard of ICW. If he was taking the belt, he was taking Wolfgang’s deid body with it because that’s the only way the big man was letting his shoulder hit the mat for a count of three.

Wolfgang was still well and truly out the game and Trent decided it was time to make like a banana and get the fuck out the steel cage. That’s a saying int it? See the thing about Wolfgang needing to be clinically deid to surrender his belt is that he was in there with a certifiable nutjob. A guy who’s went to lengths we’ve maybe never seen before to get the job done during his unbelievable battles wolfwith Mikey Whiplash and if anyone might have what it takes to go to the deep dark place a wrestler needs to go to if he’s able to murder another wrestler for the sake of a shiny belt, Trent Seven had it in him. Kicking out of a superplex from the top of the cage AT A COUNT OF ONE is living breathing proof of that. Mad bastard. I thought they were telling a beautiful story and if I’m honest I wasn’t daft on how it ended. Maybe this isn’t the end of the story, but as Wolfgang tried to climb out and Trent Seven caught him at the top of the cage, you wondered if he was going to a silly thing. He stashed they brass knuckles in his skants, but that’s not where ye use them mate. Not in a cage match. Not at the top of the cage. C’mon Trent pal. Yer better than that. Don’t dae it. Fur tha love ov gawd don’t do it.

He couldn’t resist though, and with them both perched at the top of the cage, with two tables waiting below, Trent inexplicably rattled Wolfys jaw with the brass knuckles and he majestically fell to his certain death, from 20 feet in the air through two tables Trent set up when they brawled on the outside. Becoming your first ever deid ICW Champion. Turns out even death wouldn’t be enough to take that belt from the Big Bad Wolf. Another name taken by ICW’s very own deadman. 

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I sincerely hope there’s another battle in this between them because it feels like it shouldn’t end on a mistake. The result of the following match might make Trent’s prospects of a re-match a bit more promising but at the end of the day he fucked up and has to own that. A careful campaign to become ICW Champion doon the pan because Wolfgang lured a beautiful man in to a dirty, dirty game. Maybe it just wasn’t his time, but Trent Seven has made an incredible impression on ICW over the past 2 years and there’s no doubt he’ll have more fights like this.

Team ICW (Chris Renfrew, Grado, Sha Samuels and DCT) vs Team Black Label (Drew Galloway, Kid Fite, Jack Jester and Bram) – Winner gains full control of ICW

The match for all the marbles as Mark Dallas put it. The match that meant everything. A match that was already loaded with emotion before Drew Galloway decided to douse that emotion in a gallon of petrol and set the fucker on fire by fooling us all with his wee speech the night before. A man who was integral in aiding ICW’s growth when he returned to the company 2 and a half years ago (aye its been that fuckin long since that night, unreal eh) dropping character to announce that he’d miss its biggest ever show due to a serious career threatening injury. Standing side by side with Mark Dallas as he announced he’d have to take a step back from wrestling only to land an almighty shot to his old pal’s jaw and an even mightier shot to his heart. Going in to The Hydro, Team Black Label undoubtedly had the mental edge and with Galloway cleared, even the physical upper hand on Team Dallas. A “team” who’s hopes very much hinged on two sworn enemies putting that shite on the back burner for the greater good.

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The entrances indicated they might just be willing to do that. First DCT came out with Coach Trip (with his son, which was a lovely n nice thing to see) and Colonel Mustard and The Dijon 5, the band who do his wonderful entrance music. It was a ripping good time already before Sha came out to his new tune, a parody of Park Life called SHA LIFE which was better than life itself. Normal everyday shite life can fuck off, SHA LIFE is where its at. Renfrew and Grado presented a united front with Mark Dallas, coming out to the ICW music and bumping fists before charging down to the ring for an almighty scrap. Stuff yer sorrows in a sack guys, this is a night to come together, jump about to a bit of Sha Life, and smash some very bad men. For the greater good. For ICW.

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Sha Samuels and Kid Fite have been leathering each other for a few months now, without actually ever managing to do it in a wrestling match setting, so it all spilled over when they got in amongst each other at the start of this. Would have liked to have seen them both involved for a bit longer, but their personal battle is for another day.fito As everyone had split off and picked a guy from the other team to batter, that left Sha and Fito in the ring to have a bit of a barney. Sha hitting a nice spinebuster before Fito eliminated him with that mega sare looking DDT he does. Fito’s joy was shortlived however as DCT snuck behind him for a cheeky wee rollup to pap him out, leaving the former 55, pint swiggin, mug mauling brothers to continue breaking our hearts by fighting to the back. Need to get these cunts together, sit a keg in the middle and let them hash it out like real men by gettin stupidly steamin and declaring their love for each other.

Bram and DCT renewed their rivalry for a bit before Jester snuck in and hit that mad high arcing pedigree thing he does called The Plunge To The Dungeon. Drew finally got his infinite evilness involved in the in-ring action after he nearly took Grado’s heid aff with a big boot. Grado vs Drew seems like a lifetime ago but it was only a year earlier that they combined to rip the roof aff the SECC in an incredible main event. Grado went to the shake, rattle and roll but before he could sharpen that bionic elbow, Drew straight up nutted him. Fuckin sit doon Grado mate. Renfrew was on hand to provide hauners for Grado, a sentence that just didn’t feel possible at the start of the year when they were verbally and physically decimating each other but this was no ordinary night. Renfrew had Billy Connollys big banana feet on for fucks sake, this was a special night. A very Glesga night. Renfrew went for the T-Virus, a move that would nae doubt compromise Galloways burst neck if it hit the mark but it was blocked and he had to be content with delivering one of they big banana feet right to Galloway jugular with the missile dropkick he calls Kiss Kiss Molly’s Lips.

DCT was the next one out, as he intervened in the doing Bram was giving Renfrew in the corner only to see Bram smash him in the baws and put him away with a piledriver. Aw fuck. A team of Drew Galloway, Bram and Jack Jester would be a difficult one for any two man team to topple, but a pair of guys who fuckin hate each other? Nae chance. On an ordinary night it wouldn’t be a go-er, but this night was far from ordinary. Renfrew and Grado shook hands and just fuckin went for it. Why no. Fuck all to lose except maybe their jobs if they didn’t prevail. Nae pressure boaysies eh.

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Bram was the first hurdle overcome for the unlikely duo, Grado hitting the R-Gra-Do outta naeplace to send the horrible cunt packing. He left his mark before he fucked off of course. It was never going to be a simple task to get rid of that big hooligan. He knocked the life out of Grado and Renfrew with a chair and left them for dead. Only stopping after Red jumped in to tell him they were deid 5 minutes ago and further chairshots at this point are just gratuitous. Bram eventually did bolt, but the odds of ICW continuing as we know it were shortened dramatically when Renfrew was about to take a shot to the heid with that massive studded dildo Jester carries about, only for Grado to take a bullet for the team and shove him out the way, taking a belting shot to the dome which was enough to see him eliminated. If this was the same, huffy Grado from the night before ICW were fucked. Even though he’d been eliminated the team still needed him. If Bram could stick about after he’d been papped out, so could Grado. Nae rules. Stakes have never been higher. Don’t abandon ship. No yet.renfffff

Red celebrated like it was a done deal at that point and you could see his point. Two of the longest reigning ICW Champions ever and best pals, against a beaten and battered Renfrew. Renfrew managed to chuck Drew to the outside to even the numbers up briefly, and in came Grado to provide the timeliest of hauners. Nailing Jester with The Wee Boot, a wee boot that sent him directly into the path of a Stone Cold Stoner. Jester was out, and one of the most emotionally charged feuds in ICW history would decide its future. Renfrew vs Galloway. Renfrew had Dallas in his ear right after Jester’s elimination. Delivering some rousing words. John Lambie-esque. Bring it home or you won’t have a home to go to after this. There’s no doubt his feud with Galloway put Renfrew on another level career wise, but he’d have to be willing to maybe end Galloways career for that journey to continue. You best protect ya neck kid.

They faced off, exhanging jabs before Drew flattened Renfrew with a snap piledriver. Maybe the only way to stop Renfrew going for his neck would be going after his. Renfrew nailed Galloway with a top rope stoner, a beauty of a hit that would somehow only prove to be the second most impressive execution of that move in the match. It looked a certainty to end the match only for Red to drag referee Sean McLaughlin out, flooring him with a jab and taking him out of commission. This is where I really struggle with folk questioning if the Renfrew arm drop thing was a genuine mistake. The original referee was taken out so it WOULD be Thomas Kearins overseeing the rest of the contest. Red, Jester and Drew looked set to put the finishing touches on their masterpiece only for Dallas to burst in like scrappy do on eccies to take the whole lot of them out. Raining rapid rights down on Red. His momentum was derailed by Drew removing his head with that big Claymore Kick but that sequence of events proved to be The Black Labels undoing. Seemingly possessed with a lust to see Mark Dallas personally suffer, Drew continued to batter him, taking his eyes off Renfrew, the man he still needed to pin to win the match and keep Red in charge. Jester’s attempts to get him to focus up fell on deaf ears and words were exchanged between Jester and Drew. Drew seemingly referring to Jester as the weak link, causing Big Kink to get the fuck outta dodge. A moment of anger that would cost big Drew dearly.

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He nailed Renfrew with a tombstone that probably would have got it done but nae ref meant nae count. This is where I have an issue, cause questioning if it was a real mistake is just not paying attention to the story. Thomas Kearins was humiliated, fired, laughed at, made to apologise for things he didn’t do, and just generally torn down by The Black Label. He then found himself refereeing a match that decided their future after not being initially assigned to that match. When Renfrew’s hand dropped for a third time when Galloway had that Crossface in. He took a long hard look at Renfrew. Almost willing him to wake up, and wake up he did. The match continued because Thomas Kearins was in charge and decided that if Team Dallas were going to lose, he would lose his job as a result, so it wouldn’t happen on something as underwhelming as a hand dropping three times. Think of it this way anaw, how often do you actually see refs do the hand raising thing in ICW? not often. So why would it happen in that vital moment if it wasn’t for a reason?

Still locked in the Crossface after three drops, it was only a matter of time before Renfrew WOULD pass out. Dallas knew he had nae choice but to thrust himself in the road of a phenom if he was gonnae get his company back but even a golf club accross the back barely made a dent. He swatted it away, before nutting Dallas and getting him in position for The Futureshock DDT. If only there was someone else. One more man with ICW in his heart and scuddin boots on his feet. Finn Balor. It’s never been nicer to see ye pal.

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Out came Finn to save the day but his main nemesis in his ICW days Jack Jester soon followed, dwelling ominously behind him as Drew looked on smugly. Fully expecting his Kinky brerr to crack this Irish cunt err the napper and bring it home. Jester was fuckin done though. Done being the hype man in The Drew Galloway Show. He handed that big dildo built for a 12 foot fanny to Finn and he duly cracked Drew over the napper with it, sending him right in to the best 360 Stone Cold Stoner of all time for the one, two, three. Renfrew pinned Galloway. Team Dallas beat Team Black Label. Good had triumphed over evil. 

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It was high drama and that’s what wrestling is supposed to be about. Nights like this need dramatic, heart wrenching, at times soap opera moments. It wasn’t the perfect wrestling match but it fuckin mattered. Every single moment of it did and when Red Lightning was told he was FIRED it felt real. It didn’t feel like he’d no longer be playing the role of ICWs half owner, it felt like he’d been sacked from his actual day to day job and that’s how it should be. All the credit in the world has to go to that man to making this storyline consistently engaging. Continually holding the good guys down, show after show, letting that frustration towards him build to come to a head poeticall. All the boaysies partied afterwards including Toal, Scott Reid and Sweeney. Sha even took a break from an intense game of deidys with Kid Fite to partake. Grado and Renfrew were co-existing. ICW is a wonderfully merry place without Red Lightning but I hope he’ll be back to spread his expertly crafted misery at some point.

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Joe Coffey vs Kurt Angle 

This was the main event because it was the fuckin main event. Simple as that. When since was it the role of a wrestling fan to wonder if an “import” had demanded the main event spot. When since did we just ignore the most consistent performer in ICW and perhaps the UK getting a spot he undoubtedly earned in favour of speculating if there’s a reason for it that you can put a negative spin on. The reason Joe Coffey vs Kurt Angle was the final contest on ICWs biggest ever show was the fact that Joe Coffey is one of the best independent wrestlers on the planet and Kurt Angle is a fuckin megastar. A dream match up that diehards and casual fans alike can dig their teeth into, perhaps even more so than the title match or even a match that literally had ICWs future on the line. Wrestling disnae always need to be about stupid dirtsheet patter and letting speculative pish overshadow real significant things that actually happened so leave that shite at the door and enjoy this for what it was. A dream match that pitted one of the best wrestlers in the world against an American guy called Kurt Angle.

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Angle entered to a friendly enough reception with a wee chorus of “You Suck!” from the Iron Man daft regulars. Perhaps he didn’t fully realise what ICW was all about until he got his first almost hostile reception since making his debut on the “Indies” after leaving TNA. A much loved, well respected guy, but he wasn’t OUR guy. The guy who stoated out to The Hydro as a walking saltire. It was the second time I’ve been near greeting in The Hydro in the space of a month after seeing oor Noam make his RAW debut in the very same building a couple of weeks earlier. They might be in different places career wise right now, but they both have career  making moments in that building within a couple of weeks of each other and that was a beautiful thing. Angle got a lovely reception when he was announced, because naecunt really thinks he sucks. A lot of folk just liked the guy he was facing that wee bit more.

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After a very wrestling opening, with a whole manner of tie-ups, side headlock takedowns and all that carry on, Joe gained the upper hand with a beauty of a missile dropkick that caused Kurt to spill to the outside. Fuck taking another one of them. Ye don’t win Olympic Gold Medals by standing there and taking hunners of missile dropkicks. How much better would Olympic Wrestling be if it did have missile dropkicks though? And run ins? The Jamaican wrestling team run in to some trouble so Usain Bolt literally does a run in but its so fast that naecunt actually sees it. Kurt lured Joe to the outside and jabbed him a bit, before they went back in and Kurt went up top, only to be caught and belly to belly suplexed by Joe. Top rope belly to belly suplexes are another thing that could definitely improve Olympic Wrestling, but it was a move straight of Angle’s post Olympic playbook. Yer man fuckin loves a rope assisted suplex and his nose would have been knocked well out of joint by Joe getting one in there first. Add that to getting paint all over him within about a minute and Kurt was not a happy chappy. Time for a wee bit of ANGLE SMASH.

He needed to rake Joes eyes to get a bit of respite from the battering he was on the sharp end of but even then, Joe floored him moments later withangleslam a big shoulder tackle. For a guy who’s been there, seen it, done it all, bought all the t-shirts,and cut them into wee vests, he seemed to be struggling to come up with answers to what Joe was chucking at him. Joe smelled blood and went for the Lariat but the cat like reflexes of Angle kicked in to gear and suddenly he was stringing together German Suplexes. Three of them got him a two count as he finally looked to be making a bit of headway but his Angle Slam attempt was expertly dodged, and turned in to a German from Joe. The second attempt hit the mark but nae amount of Angle Slammin was getting the job done the night. The only kind of slam capable of putting Joe to the sword on his big night would have been a world famous Jackie Polo scoop slam on top of a chair. Nae Olympic Gold nonsense was even making a dent. Joe did carry a problematic left leg injury in to the match though, and well, Kurt Angle is maybe the best in the world at turning a sare leg into a broken one. The ankle lock was in and Joe was in serious bother.

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He somehow battled out of it and not only that, Aw The Best For The Bells hit the mark moments later. That’s what his Discus Lariat is actually called. No Black Coffey, the Costa Clothesline or any other daft coffee related pun, but Angle got the shoulder up and moments later he once again had Joe in real bother. Serious shit. Squeaky bum time. Joe was in agony but even if Kurt locked it in tighter and even if he snapped Joe’s ankle clean aff and smashed him over the heid with it, he’d still didn’t have enough to get the job done. This was Joe’s night and as he locked Angle in the No Mercy Boston Crab, he never looked like he had it in him to get out of it. Angle duly tapped and Joe had the moment he unquestionably deserved. A fitting end to ICWs biggest ever show.

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Angle tapped out to a Boston Crab so any question of him being an egotist that demands main events surely goes out the window there. He got on the mic and said some very nice things about Joe, signalling his intent to come back for a rematch before leaving Joe in the ring to enjoy his moment with his people. A moment he earned by consistently stealing show after show. With Red Lightning gone from the company, it might have been a moment that saw the last of the roadblocks standing between him and a proper reign as ICW World Heavyweight Champion removed. He definitely has a score to settle with Wolfgang and if he has to smash 29 other guys in Newcastle to earn another shot, he’ll no doubt climb that mountain as well.

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A hugely enjoyable night. Enjoyed it personally a wee bit too much, to the point that I immediately whiteyed in a hedge after the show. A hydro hedge fulla whitey. Everyone involved should be immensely proud. If we’re giving it a star rating I give it a million magic stars out of 1000 chocolate starfishes. Chocolatey good so it wis. Star ratings for wrestling is stupit. Look at all these people. I give getting that many people into a building for a Scottish Wrestling show 4 billion stars. 

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Many thanks to David J.Wilson again for the wonderful photos. A very talented man who is a huge part of these shows. Seems to always manage to capture the special moments as they happen. 

ICW FEAR AND LOATHING 9 WOLFGANG VS TRENT SEVEN

trenttSome people in life were born to upset the natural order of things. Not content to wait in line for their shot. Trent Seven is undoubtedly one of those people. When he made his ICW debut in a blistering encounter against Mark Coffey around 2 years ago, his talent stood out from the word go. A man who could stand toe to toe with the best strikers in the game and stick with them every step of the way, often getting the better of them with an apparent immunity to pain on his side. He bedded in to the company with a forearm war against a guy known as “The Power Forward” on his first night; Evidence enough that he could hang with the very best, but who would have thought back then as ICW stand on the verge of their biggest show that he would be the man challenging for the ICW Title in the main event? Perhaps only the man himself, but Trent went out and earned that spot after a string of outstanding performances, including a valiant attempt at taking the title from Big Damo in one of the standout matches of 2015. After that he recieved a glowing endorsement from his main foe in ICW, former ICW Champion Mikey Whiplash at Shug’s House Party 3, and he has since earned the opportunity he was clearly due. He hasn’t backed down from the big bad Wolf in the slightest either. In fact, he’s got the better of Wolfgang much of the time they’ve come face to face, but none of those occasions occurred inside a steel cage.  None of those occasions had Wolfgang’s World Heavyweight Title on the line.

Wolfgang was already an intimidating man before he embarked on his current prolific run of knocking people out with an iron fist, but his track record in steel cage matches makes this all the more a dangerous prospect for Trent. This is a man who literally hung his own cousin from the top of a cage and he was still a good guy who came out to Hungry Like The Wolf at that time. This version of Wolfgang inside the same structure facing an opponent who isn’t a relative? A dream match for Trent could become a nightmare very quickly. Its easy to get caught up in Trent’s story and root for a guy who went out and risked everything in each and every match he had to earn the right to be in the main event at The Hydro, but don’t let the scowl he aims at the crowd every time he comes out to detract from Wolfgang’s own story. Glasgow born and bred and with ICW from day one, he steps out at the main event of perhaps the biggest show in European wrestling history as the the ICW World Heavyweight Champion. In Wolfgang’s eyes this is his fairytale, and if it has to end with him ripping Trent’s beautiful beard off his chin, that’s just how it’ll have to be.

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Trent had to contend with his fair share of knock backs on the road to The Hydro, which must make the position he finds himself in all the sweeter. Co-owner Red Lightning seeming content to allow Trent to steal the show night after night for the company without reward, he was given no choice but to bow to immense pressure to give Trent his title opportunity. Red has made considerable efforts to make life as comfortable as possible for his champions. Recognising the threat Trent Seven poses to The Black Label’s monopoly on the richest prize in ICW, Red made every effort to keep his champion away from the man who inflicted a rare pinfall defeat on Wolfgang at the June 19th Fight Club taping. It was only when he had little choice in the matter that he gave in to the demands of the considerable following Trent has built in his short time in ICW; As Trent had Wolfgang tied in the ropes with vicious intent, Red decided to save his champion from any fatal damage and granted Trent his match.

A year on from perhaps the lowest point in The Black Label’s short history, when Grado took the title from Drew Galloway in front of 4,000 strong at the SECC, Red Lightning once again sees his champion in a much more dangerous match than he’d have wanted to if he had his own way. While Trent doesn’t have a Mick Foley on his side to provide timely back-up if Red does try to get directly involved, he does have a crowd that will be overwhelmingly on his side and plenty of allies in the locker room who wan’t to see the ICW Title wrestled out of The Black Labels deathgrip once again. Wolfgang will have his work cut out for him on a night where The Black Label will understandably have eyes elsewhere with the Team Dallas vs Team Black Label match looming large. The outcome of that perhaps having a huge part to play on just how many allies Wolfgang himself can count on if things start to go a bit Pete Tong.

While having a bit of insurance behind him would be a valuable thing for the champion, there’s no doubt ideally Wolfgang would love to derail the Trent Seven bandwagon all on his own and he’s certainly capable of doing so. A performer who has a reputation for rising to the big occasions, there will be no bigger occasion than this in Wolfgang’s career. Even if ICW continue to grow and end up running bigger shows, in front of bigger crowds, he will always be the man who walked out for the main event as champion on the show where the company cemented its place at wrestling’s top table. A special moment for an iconic figure in the company. The biggest obstacle standing in his path is simply a guy who is seemingly indestructible. Having somehow survived numerous wars with Mikey Whiplash, the bear shaped torpedo known as Damo who had to do everything short of kill Trent just to pin him, and everything in between. Wolfgang probably has too much for 99.999% of wrestlers to withstand inside a steel cage but Trent might just be the guy who can take everything he has to throw at him, and return it in kind. Not content to follow the crowd and wait behind everyone else for a shot, Trent Seven has provided so many shock and awe moments since his debut. The biggest of them all could come at about half 10 on Sunday night when he holds that title aloft in front of the biggest crowd in ICWs history.

 

ICW FEAR AND LOATHING 9 PREVIEW Joe Coffey V Kurt Angle

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When Joe Coffey finally peeled himself off the canvas, broken and battered, after Wolfgang mugged him at the end of Shugs House Party 3, you could have forgiven him for walking away from all this. Sickened after seeing a 2 year long struggle finally bear that golden fruit he was waiting for, it was all gone in an instant. He fought bravely when Wolfgang cashed in his Square Go briefcase to snatch the title from Joe’s grasp before he’d even had the chance to kid on it was a guitar, or thrust it aggressively towards a camera. The Square Go briefcast itself was another prize he snatched from Joes clutches as the Iron Man entered the match first and made it all the way to the end before being toppled by a freshened Wolfgang. The grim reaper of Joes hopes and dreams extinguished his title reign before its light had even been seen. After spending 20 minutes wrestling the championship off a bear in Big Damo, what hope did he have of fighting off a wolf with the scent of blood and a title he himself has had his sights set on for many years planted firmly in his nostrils? Even at that, Wolfgang benefited from a helping hand from the all seeing eye that is Red Lightning. Perhaps the true grim reaper of Joe’s hopes in dreams, as the two have been entrenched in a bitter rivalry that stretches back to the days ICW could only have dreamed of running The Hydro. Partly because it didnae exist.

As the old saying goes, when one door closes, an Olympic gold medallist looking for a square go walks through another one. Perhaps Joe would have downed tools if it wasn’t for the biggest match of his career being on the horizon, but his victory over Damo not only ensured him the right to call himself ICW Champion, it also earned him a pop at Angle at The Hydro. A dream match not only because of the track record his opponent has and the weight his name carries, but a dream match in terms of the style both men employ. A match made in heaven on paper, and a match that could easily be all handshakes and smiles if Joe Coffey allowed it to be. No doubt Kurt Angle would love to come to ICW, have a nice and easy night and walk away with a tidy profit in his back pocket, but Joe Coffey is sick of it. As he said the last time he took to the mic in an ICW ring, he’s not here to play second fiddle anymore. Not in a company he’s had to scratch and claw to earn every single opportunity chucked his way. No way. Not on the biggest night in its history. This isn’t their night. This isn’t a show marketed as “Big name Americans + the guys we rely on every other show” this is the biggest night in Scottish Wrestling history. They are invited guests to our own very own wrestling festival, and if Kurt Angle, Ricochet, The Dudleyz or anyone else lucky enough to be handed a golden ticket think its going to be an easy night, they’re in for a rude awakening. In fact they’re in for a bit more than that. They’re in for a good old fashioned doing.

Joe has prepared for Angle by insisting he was only interested in “money fights” in the wake of his ICW World Heavyweight Title defeat, knowing fine well his path back to the title he fought so hard for would be an almost impossible one. He certainly got “money fights” in his two encounters with Matt Cross. As the living breathing create-a-wrestler from Lucha Underground took Joe to his limits in Glasgow, before he evened the score in their second encounter at ICW:Scotchtoberfest in London. The deciding frame of that nailbiter will have to stay on the backburner for now, the simple matter of throwing an Olympic Gold medalist and former WWE and TNA Champion over his head understandably at the forefront of Coffey’s mind, but when they do have their decider it will no doubt be another display of why Joe Coffey is one of the most consistent performers in Europe today. The match with a legend such as Angle coming at seemingly the perfect time for Joe, having made his debut in the USA not long ago and impressive over there. A good showing against Angle could propel him to even greater heights.

The issue with that is that Joe Coffey doesn’t seem interested in settling for just a good showing. Why shoot for that when its something he could achieve in a Diazepam induced sleep, stringing together German Suplexes in a daze while dreaming about doing other German Suplexes to someone else. Or maybe an elephant. Point is, Joe Coffey isn’t interested in the handshake. The pat on the back. The patronising “well done kid, your time will come!” speech. In his own words, Joe Coffey is coming to The Hydro for the win, and unless Angle is planning on bringing the motivated, hungry for success version of himself that has managed to conquer any challenge laid out in front of him, its fair to say he just might not have the edge required to overcome a motivated, almost bloodthirsty Iron Man. Then again, is it ever fair to count out one of the best of all-time? That’s the calibre of opponent Joe is up against here, and no matter what end of his career Kurt Angle is currently at, he’s still Kurt Angle. He’s one of the few performing on the night who’ll step into that red hot Hydro atmosphere well used to having thousands upon thousands of eyes on him and having the owners of those eyes going home talking about how he stole the show. No doubt that this encounter has all the tools to do just that on a night where the world will be watching.

 

ICW Road To The Hydro – The Tour Report (Sheffield, Southampton, Bristol)

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ICW have been on tour in the lead up to its biggest show yet at the Hydro. Biggest show anywhere ever in fact. Know how WWE broke the attendance record for Mania last year by shutting the roof of the stadium and having a fitba tournament on top of it? ICW are having a whole other wrestling show on top of the Hydro, so fuck yees. Whilst its slightly humorous that they started “The Road To The Hydro” already quite close to The Hydro, before deliberately going quite far away from it  and working their back, there’s too much wrestling stuff to be writing about to get carried away with such trivial nonsense. Pure nae idea how I’m going to do this, but that’s the fun bit. Here’s some words about some tour shows.

Girvan prepares for Ricochet by having his heart torn out of his body. Watching on as Lionheart points and laughs at it

Sheffield saw the beginnings of a new chapter in the feud between Lionheart and Lewis Girvan. Girvan’s quest for that Zero-G seems neverending and included a brief spell of him wearing the old belt, insisting it was the “Catchweight” belt even though it had a massive G right in the middle of it. Defending it once and continuing to wear it as some sort of tribute to that one defence (an undeniably excellent match against Mikey Whiplash) before it was eventually taken away for eh….some reason, I’m no a historian awrite, point is he no longer has it, and he wouldn’t be wearing the real belt at the end of this one either as Hearto insisted it was non-title. Being the smart cookie he is Lewis Girvan had a proposal. If he wins their non-title encounter, one more shot at that shiny belt the following night in Southampton. Hearto wins? He gets to give Girvan wedgies every day for a year. No just any day they’re on a wrestling show together, I’m talking Lionheart moves in just to make sure the daily wedgie is always delivered. However, in the midst of another excellent match between the two, Girvan reversed a Styles Clash attempt into a pin and that was that. Lionheart had been pinned for the first time since Donald Trump was just a regular run of the mill sex offender instead of one who RUNS THE FUCKIN WORLD. The next night in Southampton was weirdly cruel on Lewis Girvan. Even though he benefitted from a quick count to have his hand raised, he still heard the words “and NEW ICW Champion…LEWISSSSS GIRVANNNNN” and really, no matter the circumstances, if you disappear behing the curtain with a belt round your waist having heard such words, that’s you champion. Update the twitter bio, dae a big massive FB status about it, put a right good filter on the Instagram photo of yer brand new prized possession. The works.

girvLionheart came out later in the night and with the help of Drew, managed to get Thomas Kearins to correctly reverse his decision. Well technically he should have restarted the match instead of reversing it but who has time for other matches mate. There’s a whole tour to be getting through here. Lionheart’s still the champion and one thing this whole drama ensured is that when Lewis Girvan does eventually take the belt properly, it’ll get an ear shattering reaction from the crowd. He seems to be putting it all together brilliantly lately and has more crowd support than ever.
He blew aff a bit of steam in Bristol the next night after his singles match with Ravie Davie turned into Girvan and Ravie teaming up against The Purge. Whit happened to the other Purge guy btw? Is he still involved or is that him oot the picture entirely? Either way, Girvan seemed to have a smashin time teaming with Ravie Davie. Imagine the sour faced Lewis Girvan that kept smashing folk in the baws at the Square Go was asked to team with Ravie Davie 6 months ago? he’d have dipped his thumbs in salt and shoved them in yer eyes. This Lewis Girvan had an absolute laugh riot and got his team the win with a mad elevated DDT on Stevie James.

Ladies who triple threat (a lot)

As the Women’s Title match at The Hydro is a triple threat, the early part of the tour was triple threat daft. Three way dancin ye oot yer pants. Kay Lee Ray, Viper and Kimber Lee engaged in a serious wrestle in Sheffield. Nae offence to our Viper or the impressive Kimber Lee. Fair play to the pair of ye there. But Kay Lee Ray has undoubtedly been one of the shining lights of Scottish Wrestling for years, representing both home and away, and if I’d tae pick a winner for the triple threat match at The Hydro it has to be her, so to see her win this and gather a bit of momentum was some buzz. A buzz totally in no way influenced by a desire to hear her and Stevie’s music as much as possible. Get a mad “she deserves it” chant on the go. Right now. I know this is words on a page but if everyone reading this does it at the same time, the noise will spread. Honestly. Do it the now. Haud on….are you actually daein it?
Viper and Kimber Lee were both in triple threat action again in Southampton the next night, this time with Pollyanna as the third competitor. The thing I like the most about the tour shows is getting to see folk wrestle I hear a lot about but never get round to seeing. There was a few instances of that in these shows, and we’ll talk about the most impressive one later, but Pollyanna was also fuckin excellent on first viewing. On the surface she’s a smiley probable maths teacher, but underneath shes a homicidal double stomping maniac. A murderer in sheeps clothing as the saying goes. Viper prevailed thanks to a move she calls Snakebite, but Kimber Lee and Pollyanna both impressed in what was a tidy wee bit of triple threatting.
So with a win each, Viper and Kay Lee faced off in Bristol to settle the score. Basically next goal’s the winner in wrestling ring, or it would have been if Kay Lee Ray didnae forgo the match entirely to knock fuck out of Viper’s leg. I’m sure Kay Lee Ray is a nice person n that, but as much as I enjoyed her as a goodie in ICW, there’s something so much more emphatic and almost authentic about her being a low down dirty bad yin who takes great pleasure in spitting on your dreams. She left Viper wae a sare leg, and a sare heart, wondering if her Hydro dream was fucked.

Davey and Joe

Jack Jester has annoyingly become one of my favourite things in ICW. Well maybe that’s pushing it a wee bit, but see before? Never really bought into what he was about. Nae disrespect or that, but it wasn’t for me, because the good but also really violent guy act never made sense to me. He’s a baddie. One of the best one’s we have, and when you put him in a position where he can be a right bad bastard he excels. A right sarcastic dildo wielding bastard so he is. Joe Hendry was his opponent on this night and Jester scooped up the win thanks to Davey Blaze blasting Joe in the baws.joewee.jpg They’re feuding don’t you know. It’s actually one of the main reasons they’re always shouting at each other in The Garage. They’re no just one of they couples who likes to go out together so they’ve got an audience to fight in front of, they’re performers who fight in front of a paying audience. Entirely different thing so it isnae. Davey himself lost to BT Gunn later in the night. Finish was a bit odd, as the ref had his leg pulled but counted the three anyway. Joe Hendry came out and really fuckin went in on Davey on the mic. Calling him an embarrassment and even saying he sniffs wee dugs bums and keeps a diary on the subtle nuances between the different smells contained within said bums. Joe proposed that if Davey wins their Hydro match he goes away for a year, but if Joe wins it he gets 5 minutes in wee mans ring. Or words to that effect. Either way it’s probably going to be unpleasant for the wee man. Even if Joe lights a few candles for the occasion.

Matters concerning Christopher Renfrew esq and Sir Trent of Seven

Chris Renfrew vs Trent Seven was a former ICW Champion vs a future ICW Champion. Even if its not at The Hydro, it’s happening for Trent. He does mad spinny piledrivers ffs. Fire that on top of how much of a beautiful human he is in general and you’ve got an ICW Champion in the making. This match was about as much violent fun as you’d expect. They went outside for a bit and went twos on a snout before returning to the ring to chuck tridents at each other before Trent took the win with one of a mad spinny piledriver I’m reliably informed (aka I made it up) he calls “The Pete Burns”.
Renfrew followed that scrap up with an even scrappier one in Southampton the night after. Taking on the debuting Clint Margera in a proper slice of hardcore. Margera is basically a less folically challenged, more English version of Renfrew and they knocked fuck out each other in between bouts of screaming “THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE!” at each other. Renfrew killed Margera with the T-Virus on to hunners of tacks, before taking to the mic to welcome to him to ICW. I’m not sure if dead bodies can hear and comprehend words you say to them, but if they can I’m sure Margera will be hugely appreciative of Renfrew’s words.
Trent faced DCT in Southampton, in a classic battle between two guys who its completely impossible to dislike. If we were aw mad virgins, we’d have been chanting “both these guys!” throughout this encounter, following it up with a nice “this is awesome!” rounded off by chanting “graps!” repeatedly until our brains all implode at once. It was a lovely encounter between two lovely men. One who had his tash cruelly snatched off his beautiful coupon and another who’s built an empire on his own tash, which happens to be coupled with a beard ye just want to jump inside and bathe in. Once again the spinny piledriver got the job done but see aside from dropping him on his head with great force for the finish, this match was all about the mutual respect. An exceedingly sexy, respectful time. renfgradosha

Renfrew rounded off his own personal trio of scraps with an almost therapeutic match against Sha Samuels. There’s tension on Team ICW. Grado and Renfrew can’t get along, Sha is pretty much Grado’s best pal, so he’s obviously going to take exception to that and what better way is there to air out yer grievances with yer fellow-man and soon to be team-mate by smacking the taste clean out his gub. Bristol didnae get the memo that Sha’s a good guy in ICW now, because they called him a cockney wanker throughout and strongly favoured a Glaswegian over a fellow Englishman. Dunno why it continues to shock me that Sha gets nae love down south. One key difference to the scene down there and the one in Scotland, if yer a proper baddie you get the reaction a proper baddie should get in most cases. Wheras if yer Scottish and you wrestle in Scotland ,it disnae really matter what you do. You could pull yer skants down and literally pish on the audience while phoning each and every one of their maw’s to call them mad hoors and you’d still get a wee pocket of folk cheering for ye. We’re either twisted or a wee bit stupit. Renfrew won with the stoner before Sha dropped some wise words about them needing to come together for one night only, and offered his hand to Renfrew. A hand he definitely considered taking. At least for a second, but he vanished behind the curtain with nae issues having been resolved, leaving Sha to tell the whole of Bristol how much he fuckin hates them.

The ballad of Drew “no the night” Galloway,  as he tells the wee toons “fuck you”

Drew Galloway patched wrestling DCT in favour of coming out in jeans and a hoodie and leathering him alongside Jester. I take back the nice shit I said about Jester btw, because this theme of him battering DCT every now and then is not one I enjoy. Leave him the fuck alane. You anaw Bram. The whole lot of yees fuckin back aff. In Southampton it was Sha Samuels getting the treatment, as Lionheart sneak attacked the big man as he waited for Drew. The gruesome twosome then moved on to the whole sorting out the Lionheart Zero-G Title mess and threatened referee Thomas Kearins while Sha continued to sell the beating he just took. So basically Sha had a wee sleep in the ring while Drew screamed at Thomas Kearins and he was upside down read to take a Styles Clash. I hope he dreamt of smashin mugs. Aw the mugs. Coffee mugs, tea mugs, Aberdonians. Any kind of mug ye could think of. Really enjoying what they’re doing with Drew’s injury but. Keeping us intrigued. Everyone knows Drew is legit injured but him coming out and giving it all the bravado is adding an extra element to the storyline. Really hope when the day arrives that Drew is able to lace them up cause no matter what you think of him, him coming back to ICW was a huge shot in the arm for a company already on the rise and his ICW Title reign had a big hand in establishing the company in other countries so he deserves to wrestle on the biggest show in European history. Fuckin least the cunt deserves.
In Bristol Drew was supposed to wrestle Joe Hendry but once again came out in his civvys, team handed, before things took a bit of an interesting turn of events when Dallas challenged him right there and then to prove he was fit for the Hydro by fighting HIM. A bold move, even if yer 99.99999% sure a cunt has a burst neck, when that cunt is 6’4-6’5, and built like a tank, a proposal of fisticuffs is never a good idea. Lionheart persuaded Drew to leave it, before Dallas informed him he was still on the payroll and he’d need to fight DCT or that shiny belt would be whipped clean aff him. DCT looked on the verge of a big win before Lionheart flipped out of the “Tashmission” into a pin with a wee assist from the ropes. Bet Hearto wins his match at The Hydro clean as a whistle just to annoy folk even more. The 2016 Lionheart vindication tour keeps on making towns and taking names. Who’s next.

Joe collects another couple of skulls for the mantelpiece

Joe Coffey skipped the Sheffield show for the small matter of wrestling Cody Rhodes in from of 1,000+ people in Paisley, but returned for the Southampton show to batter fuck out of Josh Bodom.  To be quite honest I’d have enjoyed giving this aw sorts of shit cause I’m no a big lover of Mr Bodom, but it was irritatingly great. They proper smacked each other for ages, really hard, in the face and throughout the upper body. As unpalatable as I find Bodom on a human level is annoyingly difficult to deny he’s a talented boay and really brought the best out in Joe. Joe won because he’s a main made of Iron and that’s generally enough to beat guys who say “bro” a lot without a hint of irony.
Joe’s opponent in Bristol was big Iestyn Rees. Rees has been a fixture in Pro Wrestling Elite for around 2 years now and up until he wrestled Joe, I’m no feart to admit I really didn’t get it. He was clearly a physical specimen who had all the tools, but he wasn’t my cup of tea. It was his title defence against Joe that turned it round and I’ve been more and more impressed with the big man since. This match was undoubtedly his best in ICW and the momentum and confidence he’s gathered since aligning himself with Bird and Boar seems to be leading to good things. Joe scudded his nut clean aff his shoulders with a Discus Lariat for the win right enough, so things aren’t that good for the big yin yet, but he’s a sneaky wee outsider in the Stairway To Heaven match at The Hydro. No one’s talking about him winning it, which sounds like the perfect scenario for him to sneak in and do the business. Zack Ryder style. While everycunt’s looking elsewhere.
Joe Coffey is carrying a horrendously sare looking leg injury into The Hydro and he’s still turning in stoaters every single show. Kurt Angle better not even think about phoning this one in, because if he does, he’ll need an extra seat on the plane hame for his heid after Joe knocks it aff.

Polo Promotions march on

First stop on the road to chuckin a couple of specky old timers about The Hydro for Polo Promotions was an excellent encounter with The New Nation in Sheffield. I mind seeing The New Nation in the tag tournament to crown new champions after Polo Promotions left and thinking they’d be top drawer opponents for the Polo’s themselves. Thank fuck the boaysies are back doing their thing. Greet and moan about them leaving aw ye want, but why pre-occupy yourself with such silliness when you could just be fuckin happy two of the very best are dominating the tag division once again. Its heavy good that the likes of The New Nation and Bird n Boar got a foot in the door thanks to the tag tournament, but the division felt like a ship without a captain without the rightful champs. The REEEEEEAL champs. Next night in Southampton they had another cracker with Travis Banks and Chris Brookes, and solidified their position as the single greatest tag team in Europe. Certainly the best tag team to ever put the stupit Dudleyz through numerous tables at The Hydro on November 20th. Out with the very old, in with the Scotland’s BEEEEEEEST tag team.
They rounded off the tour of multi cultural doings with another stellar affair against Bird and Boar. The New Nation are gid and both right big bruisers, but of the teams who emerged from that tourny, Bird and Boar are my favourites for sure. Both cracking at the auld grappling, but quirky into the bargain. Lit are they really a Bird and a Boar? Is this human form we see them in simply an optical illusion or just some really flashy gear that turns animals into mental looking humans? So many unanswered questions. This one was the pick of the three matches for me, but it had one vital thing in common with the other two and that was yer Polo’s scooping up the win via Old Man Of Hoy (which is an assisted German Suplex, no a run in by a sea stack)

Wolfy the main event player

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Wolfgang finally realised his dreams when he took the ICW Title from Joe Coffey, but ever since the big man had his hand raised that night he’s been in an awfy bad mood it seems. Shouting at folk. Looking real mean. Knocking you, yer da, and aw yer mad uncles out with brass knuckles. Maybe that belt is a gift and a curse. With great power comes a great amount of brass colliding with a great amount of temples. Sha Samuels was the latest man to fall, before The Black Label wrapped him up in the ropes and set about him, only for an almighty rammy to ensue that somehow left Trent Seven in the ring, giving Wolfie all sorts of snash about how he was taking that belt aff him. For every sour face Wolfie pulls at someone, Trent is somewhere in the world rubbing beards and spreading happiness so in many ways this is the perfect feud.
Wolfgang followed that up with another brass plated win over Joe Hendry in Southampton the night after. Sneaking to the outside after taking Hendry’s fallaway slam only to knock him clean out as he dwelled on the outside. Trent once again ended the night with a mic on his hand well on top as he seemed to gain the upper hand on Wolfie on the first leg of the tour. Its hard not to love Trent, but there’s almost a wee air of cockiness about his words when he’s stepping in there with a legit ICW legend, and a man undefeated in cage matches. A man who fought with everything he has to get that belt, even if the actual title win wasn’t covered in glory, he still earned the right to call himself an ICW Champion. The big man roved beyond any reasonable doubt that no amount of brass knuckles to the temple finishes diminishes the quality he has in that ring, as he proved in Bristol the night after when he was one half of one of the best ICW matches I’ve maybe ever seen.
It was almost a feeling of nostalgia as Charlie Garrett jumped about the Marble Factory in Bristol like a man possessed. It reminded me of my second ICW show, late 2012, Wolfgang set to take on a guy I’d heard plenty about but hadn’t seen a lot of. That man was called Fergal Devitt and has gone on to do some decent stuff. You could call him noteworthy I guess, but that match changed the way I seen Pro Wrestling as an adult and really opened my eyes to the fact that it had something to keep me interested and even if the mainstream shit wasn’t floating my boat personally, SOMETHING was. Charlie Garrett’s display on his ICW debut was in a similar bracket to that. Not since seeing Uhaa Nation perform for the first time a couple of years back have I personally had that “Oh my fucking god, who the fuck is this magnificent bastard?” feeling as I had when I watched this match. Charlie Garrett is the fuckin baws and goes from 0 to moonsault in about half a second. Raw power moves to corkscrew sentons in a fuckin flash. A terrific debut from a guy I look forward to seeing a lot more from. Even looked like Wolfgang was about to shake his hand at the end despite knocking him clean out with the brass knuckles for the win. The video cut off before we got to see if he did indeed get that handshake, but in my head they shook hands, mutual respected oot their nuts. Keep an eye on Charlie Garrett but. A unique talent. Last time someone debuted in ICW anywhere near as impressively as that, he went on to main event The Hydro with the very man Garrett faced in Bristol, so who knows what lies in his ICW future, but based on that showing, there certainly will be an ICW future for him.

Damian Dunne and Dan Moloney also had a match in Southampton and it was very good but not linked to anything storyline wise so couldn’t put it anywhere else bar this awkward wee end bit. Well done to them both. Very solid wrestling stuff. 

Thank you to David J.Wilson for the photos which aren’t linked to the shows mentioned at all but I couldnae find any photos from they shows and shit is a lot easier on the eyes with a few photos so there we are. The photos used are from recent Garage shows and have some relevance to the words so…aye. David J.Wilson is god. 

 

 

ICW Fear And Loathing 9 Preview – BT Gunn vs Stevie Boy

btstEverywhere I see British Wrestling being championed, its always the same thing. A small group of hugely talented (mostly English, not that there’s anything wrong with that..be who you are, stay tru to u) wrestlers who have made an impression all over the map being spoken about. Guys who have a foot in the door with the likes of NJPW, PWG, Evolve, ROH etc. Japan + big indies basically. That seems to be the formula to have everyone chattering about ye and that’s sound, but while everyone’s wondering when Mary Scurll’s gonnae end up on NXT, or when Will Ospreay’s next attempt to break the world record for flips is happening, sometimes shit maybe slips through the cracks. Outstanding wrestling stuff that’s out there, but maybe isn’t being championed enough. Outstanding shit that exists on the biggest card in European Wrestling’s recent history, just sitting in the background whilst the foreground screams “LOOK AT ME”. Plotting. Menacingly plotting. Ready to steal the show.

When BT Gunn vs Stevie Boy was first announced it didn’t even have any kind of intriguing stipulation, but it still felt huge that they had a one on one match on such a big stage. Their mutual hatred feels tangible, to the point that it almost forms a cloud and hangs over their heads, controlling them with puppet strings to carry out these unspeakable deeds on each other. They wanted each other dead and were willing to throw all sorts of mad kicks and the odd Canadian Destroyer at each other to get that job done. There was chants. A solemn proclamation from Renfrew…Stevie’s gonnae die, gonnae die, STEEEEEEEEEEEVIE’S gonnae die. There was a funeral. The death of the NAK was celebrated by a gleeful Stevie. Admitting murder in front of numerous witnesses because he just could not contain his excitement for another second. His excitement was short lived, the NAK aren’t dead despite the monster they created claiming it so. The mad Reverend was premature but the fact that these two mad bastards step in to a situation where one of them HAS to die for it to end makes this whole thing a lot more cut and dried. There’s no dread anymore. There’s no wondering when the death of one of your favourite wrestlers is coming, we now know it happens November 20th, 2016. The Hydro. BT Gunn vs Stevie Boy. Casket match.

This is the first match of its kind in ICW and that gives it even more significance because as heated and as real as their rivalry feels, the match will be a bit of a creative blank canvas for them when it comes to crafting the match itself. A couple of right good pals cooking up a beautiful story to tell in front of the biggest crowd of their storied history. In ICW’s storied history. In the storied history of Scottish Wrestling for fuck sake (am I saying storied history too much here? this is the most anyone’s said storied history in its storied history) its a shame they can’t be good pals after the fact. Its even a shame they can’t continue to knock fuck out each other after this one is done and dusted but a casket match is a casket match. The rules are the rules. When Yokozuna and hauf the locker room loaded The Undertaker into that casket at the 94 Royal Rumble he actually died. They only started calling him the dead man after that. He was actually called The Overtaker before it and his gimmick was being hopelessly addicted to gambling, so there can be only one. After this there won’t be any more show stealing battles. No one night only reformation of the NAK as the mighty squadron of mad bastards it once was. Only the victor, and his spoils, the rotting corpse of his enemy.

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Folk wondered why the NAK split happened earlier in the year, and admittedly I was one of them. As a 5 person unit it felt like it had more legs, but wrestling is a neverending story, and the least it requires from those who follow it is a wee bit of patience. Wait and see how it plays out before writing something off. For me, the NAK split was designed to facilitate so many things on The Hydro card. It chucks 5 vital roster members who would maybe have been confined to the one storyline and scatters them all over the card, but Stevie and BT can’t separate. They never could. Blood brothers who won’t stop until the last drop of blood drains from at least one of them. You wouldn’t even be shocked if there’s no winner. They batter lumps out each other in new and inventive ways for a solid half hour, it ends as they both stand by the open casket, knocking the living fuck out each other, before they both pull a machete from each other’s back pocket and simultaneously decapitate one and other, gently falling in the casket at the same time to bleed out together. True blood brothers until the bitter end.

You might walk into The Hydro excited for Joe Coffey and Kurt Angle to put on a mad suplex clinic and that’s great. I’m excited for that too, and it absolutely has all the tools to steal the show itself. You might walk buzzin out yer chebs to see Trent Seven and the army try to prize the belt off the big bad Wolf in a steel cage, and that’s great, I’m buzzin as fuck to see that unfold as well. Maybe you’re even champing at the bit to see if sworn enemies Chris Renfrew and Grado can co-exist and help Mark Dallas take ICW back, or if Drew Galloways neck has healed enough for him to tip it in The Black Label’s favour and that’s awrite as well, if that’s your jam, throw it on and boogie ’til yer heart’s content. Whatever on the card you stoat in to that building most excited about will hopefully live up to its billing, but the match you’ll stoat out of the building thinking about will be The Oddity vs The Devils Spawn. The Student vs The Teacher. NAK till death vs NAK till I kill the cunts. BT Gunn vs Stevie Boy.

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Thank you to David J Wilson for the wonderful images.

The Top 9 Reasons RAW and Smackdown in Glasgow Will Be Better Than Every Other Episode Of RAW and Smackdown

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RAW and Smackdown are two of the longest running episodic television shows in the history of long running episodic television shows. The difference between these shows and every other TV show is that they have no shelf life. No expiration date. No real competition for its share of the market at all, so these shows will never stop. Seriously. When you’ve been dead 300 years and the planet is occupied by floating virtual reality pods occupied by clinically dead “humans” who have been purposefully frozen with full brain activity to ensure eternal life, RAW and Smackdown will still be on TV. Wrestlers will still be wrestling. There will still be some kind of storyline involving authority figures and employees having friction with them, and the virtual reality pod people will just need to fucking deal with it like we had to. So to suggest Glasgow will be the scene of their most entertaining, action packed shows to date is some outlandish shit. That’s what known as a tangent, and the following will be the single greatest list article you’ve never read.

1. Glasgow crowds are super LIVE

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This is an exclusive photo taken from an obscure Glasgow live event and I mean just look at these folks. With the flags and the patriotic passion ripping out them. Many of them are mid song, gesticulating wildly over something. It’s the kind of crowd entertainers long to entertain in front of, so when Bo Dallas stoats out at The Hydro with the exact same “I’m really happy! but with a sinister side!” gimmick he’s been rehashing for about 4 years, this crowd will give it exactly the reaction is deserves. By going to one of The Hydro’s many classy eateries and bars for refreshments, returning just in time to see Cutis Axel soaking in the adulation of the crowd after beating poor Bo down. What you get with a Glasgow crowd is something you simply don’t get anywhere else, and that’s a chant “Here We! Here We! Here We Fucking Go!” being shoehorned in no matter what event is being held in the great city. Even Songs of Praise LIVE! where many a boozed up nun has been caught chucking her knickers at the stage because for one night only they decided to put the “fun” in “look at that fun nun”.

2. The crowd will get behind their own. Even if they’re from Ayrshire. 

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Noam mate. Its too real for me. Every week I sit there in front of the stupid idiot box. Watching, waiting, wishing. Where art thou Noam? Did WWE sign you to ensure I tune in to RAW every week to see if you’ve finally graced us all with your presence. As a nation, we yearn for Noam. He was taken from us too soon, and if he doesn’t make his debut on at RAW in Glasgow, it is with no exaggeration that I say I will personally rip the roof off The Hydro and chuck it into The Clyde like a giant frisbee. If he does debut? Be prepared for the roof to come off a different way, because even though he’s from Ayrshire which is renowned for being full of mad roasters, we accept Noam as one of our own. I jest, Ayrshire’s lovely and it would be just perfect if Noam debuts in front of a “Home” crowd. Watch as WWE shite all over our dreams and give us Tony Nese vs Lince El Dorado instead.

3. If this goes well, we might get one a year, so the crowd will bring their A game. 

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We all know what this means. If the crowd are on their game and the shows go well, we’ll get a live show every year. I love the local scene more than anything, but to me the fact that the big boys might be running proper significant shows in our stomping ground is something huge and will only increase interest in local promotions. Because when WWE go away, folk still want live wrestling. They’ll go to that thing with Grado and Big Drew. They’ll see an outstanding show. They’ll see more. They’ll see themselves spending A LOT more time in The Garage nightclub than they ever imagined. They’ll get into their auld man’s tramadol stash and see wee bunnies jumping in to honey pots. Wait….one of them might not be related to the point I was making, but listen. The crowd will bring it because they know they have to bring it.

4. Becky Lynch defends the Smackdown Womens Title 

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Cards on the table here, running out of ideas that won’t be complete daftness so might as well write about a genuine wrestling thing that will happen. Becky Lynch couldn’t defend her Womens Title at the last Smackdown PPV because of injury so her match with Alexa Bliss happens here. Its one of those title matches on a weekly show they advertise beforehand which would indicate Alexa Bliss might have a shot at winning it off “Becky Balboa”. Love Becky and all that, love her to bits, but her patter’s shockin’ and maybe a wee loss followed by a patter tutorial from Glasgow’s finest merchants after the match could turn her patter career around.

5. The Hydro does a smashin sausage supper

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This is a lie. I’ve lied to you here. When me and a few friends last visited The Hydro we’d all skipper dinner so when our collective tummies started making the grumblies, off we went seeking nourishment. What we found was a chippy type thing serving up the most horrendous Sausage Suppers you’ll ever eat in your life. I still taste this fucking thing every time I burp, so if you’re searching for a point in this article, this is it right here. If you go to these shows, live, love, laugh, take eccies, enjoy, but don’t eat the Sausage Suppers.

6. Braun Strowman will be squashing

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That mean’s you could be next. If you’re under 200 pounds and have a startling inability to grow any significant facial hair, you could be the next “local enhancement talent” used to make Braun Strowman seem like something more than just a massive guy who’s finishing move makes no sense. A reverse chokeslam where you grip the back of the opponents neck isn’t “choking” and therefore is not a chokeslam but that’s fine mate. He’s 6 foot 10, 569 pounds of beard, and quite frankly he can call his finisher whatever the fuck he wants. Cannot wait to see who he squashes in Glasgow. I’m hoping it isn’t 1-3 wrestlers, and instead its 15 junkies tied together to make one big mega junkie.

7. NOAM EFFIN DAR MATE

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Falling back into our lives as if Drew Galloway just kicked him off a ledge, and falling on to this list for a second time because I’m running out of things to list, Noam Dar MUST make his first RAW appearance on Monday or I’m never watching it again. For a full week, I will abstain from watching new episodes of Monday Night RAW. That’s how much I personally love Noam Dar, and tbh that’s how much all of you should also love him. GET HIM ON MA TELE.

8. The Hydro is a beautiful big bowl. Made for wrestling. Not a bad seat in the house. 

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Don’t even work there mate, just saying. Of all the live venues in Glasgow that could hold a pro wrestling show, this is the guy. Having attended no less than 3 wrestling shows there all from very different areas of the building, I can assure you all, there is not a bad seat in the house. I got there 20 hours early just so I could try each and every seat out to make sure and there wasn’t one where I felt I wouldn’t be bathing in the slick wrestling action. No obstructed views, no seats that seem deliberately designed to cause chronic neck pain. None of that. If you love wrestling, you’ll love The Hydro, and should continue to love it just a week after these shows when ICW run a show there on November 20th.

9. THE KEVIN OWENS SHOW – GLASGOW STYLE 

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Think about something for a wee second. Chris Jericho has been at his very best lately. Better than he has been in over 10 years. A legend who was maybe seen as someone a bit stale who only existed to lose to up and coming talent, suddenly feels like the megastar he is again. What’s changed? What’s different about this run to all the wee recent “Fozzy are doing fuck all for the next 3 months, so I might as well” runs? Kevin Owens is different. Kevin Owens is the focal point RAW needed and the focal point that also allows RAW to give the spotlight to other deserving talents at the same time. It doesn’t feel like they’re trying to force us to like THEIR guy, instead they’re just letting an extremely talented guy do his thing and he will do that thing in Glasgow, still champion, still running the show, still NOT on the list because he’s such a loyal and good best friend.

 

An Interview With Krieger

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Krieger throwing up gang signs moments after being given detention for wearing a singlet to school

When I first gave big Krieger a shout about doing an interview, he was not one half of the PBW Tag Team Champions. In between me asking and eventually sending him questions, he had somehow become one half of the PBW Tag Team Champions and that got me thinking. What if this is a trend? What if this is the winter of gold for Krieger’s young and old, and if I wait it out just a wee bit longer, he’ll be WWE Champion by the time I send the questions. Ever since I pulled the trigger and actually got this done, Krieger has won The TNA X-Division Title, The GFW Grand Atlantic 12 Gold Bars for £11.99 Title, The Nobel Peace Prize, The Formula One Drivers Championship, The ICW Zero-G Title, The WWE Smackdown Womens Title and The Johnny Thighslaps Award For Excellence In Wrestling Realism, so he’s on pace to have won every award available to the human race by the end of 2016. A number of postal votes for the US Presidential Election are said to have Trump and Clinton crossed out and “Big Krieger fae the wresslin!” scribbled in their place, but we pride ourselves on getting these interviews BEFORE the big break happens so we can be all smug lit that “See him? Knew about him before knowing about hings wis even a hing m8!”

So the questions were sent, and the big charismatic baw booter provided answers. Probably while he was covering Kevin Owens to become only the third ever WWE Universal Champion.


So new PBW tag champs eh? Ye think yer a big shot now do ye? Nah seriously though, how did it feel to take the titles on PBWs biggest show of the year?

Means the world. The fact that it’s for PBW who trained me and taught me everything I know makes it that much more special. The fact it was with Lou was special for me also because he has always went out his way to help me. When it became clear that our characters fell within the same ballpark it would have been easy for him not to be too keen on it but instead he went out his way to advise me on how to carry a character through a match. When you put they two factors together it was an honour.

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You and Lou King Sharp have been tagging for a wee while now and are part of a growing division of young tag teams in Scotland. How far do you see this team going and will there be a plentiful amount of dancing and maw shaggin along the way?

No need to worry, for the foreseeable future I’ll be dishing out scuddings and Lou will be sending yer maw scuddies. The tag division in Scotland is full of great talent. It’s no my place to say where we fit into that, that is the job of fans and promoters to decide. We will continue to work as hard as anyone and take any opportunity that comes our way.

You recently had your first run on the holiday camps with Kid Fite and co. How was that experience? Getting to wrestle so much in a short period, do you feel it helped your learning process a lot?

I had a 9/10 week run wrestling the best in the UK 5 days a week. If I wasn’t working them, BT Gunn and/or Kid fite gave me feedback after every one of they matches. So to answer your question it made me much better. At my stage of development what I was crying out for was reps. Consistent work, improving my wrestling and fine tuning my character. Thanks to Kid Fite giving me the nod I got all of that this summer. There is a long way to go for me and I have a lot of improving still to do but the camp run made huge improvements to myself.

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How would you describe your character? Like if I’d never seen you do your thing, how would you sum yourself up? Just a mad patter merchant that loves scuddin cunts?

Fito (clown owes me a fiver for plugging him so much on this) likes to describe me as “Lous big mosher brother” I think for a one sentence answer that’s the best.
Just a mad patter merchant that loves scudding folk is my tinder bio.
It was actually an interview with the bold Fito conducted in Kriegers car that made me pay particular attention to him, and sure as fuck he proved to be the standout on the trainee show PBW were running in Greenock that night. So a plug for a plug int it. If the guy who does the single greatest snap suplex in wrestling thinks yer decent, you must be doing something right. 
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You’re a PBW academy graduate. Tell us a bit about the school and what sets it apart from the others? Who have your main influences been during training?

One of the great things is that there are loads of top schools in Scotland each trained by people who have a wealth of experience. For me PBW has been brilliant, TJ Rage and Kid Fite trained me and they are very much believers of you get out exactly what you put in. If they see how bad you want it they will do everything in their power to make it happen for you. I am a prime example of that. If you work your arse off for they two they will give it back tenfold. My biggest training influences (outwith my trainers) is probably Kenny Williams. Kenny has only taken training a handful of times whilst I have attended but he started where I did and look where he is now. One of the very best in Europe

You make your first (I believe) main roster ICW appearance soon. Has becoming a regular there been a goal for you, and how do you intend to make that happen?

Anyone who says they wouldn’t want to be an ICW roster member is at the noise up. Of course that’s a goal but, at the moment, possibly unrealistic for myself. My immediate goal is to solidify my place in the promotions I work for in Scotland and build on my work down south. If I can do that and make a bit of a buzz around myself then ICW could become a regular thing but only if I continue to work hard and improve.

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So you tag with TJ Rage and Lou King Sharp. One big, one wee. Aw the dynamics. The big question is, who’d ye like better?

Fuck me. Both teams bring their own benefits and challenges. Both of them are extremely talented and I need to be at my best to not look out of place when I team with either of them. I appreciate the help both these guys continue to give me.
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The classic “I prefer the wee guy but don’t want the big guy to leather me” response. Safe but respectful. Hopefully reading this wee bit means big TJ will batter him anyway for a giggle.
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With Scottish/British wrestling going through a “boom” period right now, how much of a buzz is it to be slap bang in the middle of it trying to carve out a name for yourself in an era where opportunities are plentiful?
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The generation that have came before us have taken Scottish wrestling to a level never thought possible. They are the reason people like myself have the opportunity to hone our craft in front of packed out venues up and down the country. Without their hard work none of us would stand a chance. It undoubtedly is easier for us to make a break nowadays but fuck me we don’t half have a hard job following this group of wrestlers.
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Who were your wrestling influences growing up? Anyone in particular you try to channel through your own work?
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Growing up it was the attitude era guys as I’m sure krieger10most 22 year olds would say. In terms of people who I try to replicate I would probably say Michael Hayes. Guy was a big flamboyant guy who could either make a crowd love him or hate him, if I can replicate that even 50% we might have something.
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No gonnae lie, got a wee semi for that answer. Being a generic pants n kickpads wrestler man is fine, but unless you’re flawless at the grapplin’ it’ll go nowhere. Be a fuckin freebird and be something. 
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Anyone on the scene you’ve yet to aim the scuddin boots at but would like the chance to? 
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A few cause it’s too hard to just say one Stevie Xavier. Guy is a class act. Never seen him have a bad match. Aaron Echo, never really crossed paths despite training almost exact the same amount of time.
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Aaron Echo vs Krieger for the PBW Title will happen one day. Mark my wildly speculative words.
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What’s the big aim for Krieger? What are you personally looking to get out of this wrestling carry-on? 
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The big aim is to make a living from this carry on. I want to get to a level where this can be my full time job. In order to do that I have a lot of improving to do, so immediate plan is to continue to ask anyone and everyone for advice and make the most of every opportunity I get.
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Last but not least, tell us literally anything ye like. Plug yer social media if ye want. Tell us yer favourite sweetie. Favourite juice to enjoy in glass bottle form. Whitever ye fancy ma man.
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PBW academy has schools in Greenock, Barrhead and Airdrie every Sunday.
PBW has launched its on demand service where you can see any PBW show soon after its been. This includes Noam Dars last match for PBW(me and lou pure scudded him) that time me and Lou battered two power rangers. That other time me and Lou scudded Wolfie and Hearto just cause we could and soon our glorious tag title win.
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BCW needs no plugging as it sells out 3 month in advance nowadays but they have given me so many opportunities I need to to thank them here.
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Twitter- @kriegerPBW
Instagram- @KriegerPBW
www.facebook.com/KriegerPBW/

 


Big thank you to the massively talented David J.Wilson for the photos and to big Krieger for his time. Talented dude. Lots of charisma and seems to be finding his niche so keep an eye out and come and see his ICW main roster debut at The Garage the night before Fear and Loathing at The Hydro.