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Wrestling, Sports

ECCW: Van-City Showdown 2016

Ed73c95199a7c52e70a7ff5fe66a1e13?s=96&d=mm&r=g
Wyatt Arndt Jun 28, 2016 2:57 am

The proverbial “Go Home” show for the Commodore Ballroom Brawl VI, Van-City Showdown promised to be light on storyline changes, and more about cementing home the direction heading into Brawl. This was ECCW’s chance to finalize the Brawl card and pray nobody else gets hurt.

Billy Suede vs King of the Yukon

Image: Mary Diaz

Image: Mary Diaz

As injuries continue to ravage the ECCW roster, management did some slick booking for the show and had Yukon face off against Suede. They have a history together, so it’s always nice when a match up has some substance behind it, rather than wrestling for the sake of wrestling.

Now, full props to Yukon for his entrance, as it started with empty beer cans being tossed out through the curtains before he came out. Was it a work, or was he really crushing those beers in the back? Yukon is the Daniel Day-Lewis of ECCW so he might have actually been shotgunning those beers. I am pretty much convinced the dude might in fact be the actual King of the Yukon.

As for Billy, he recently dropped an awesome promo with Nicole, and I kind of love over the top confident Billy Suede who does dumb things, then tries to play it off like it’s cool anyways. Makes it stand out more amongst the straight and narrow heels, and Billy is really good at it.

A fun moment in the match occured when the Yukon began yipping, barking and yelling at Suede. Suede looking really confused as to what to do with it, which again, plays into that sweet spot of arrogant heel being made to look foolish but tries to play it off cool. Love it.

The crowd was hot, and it was a solid match. Yukon is really good at making running attacks to the corner high energy. The match ended with a Yukon win, and something tells me The King isn’t done with Suede just yet.

Of note, Billy Suede’s biggest fan hasn’t been seen at a show  for a while, and I am concerned for him. I don’t think he’s ever recovered from Billy’s turn to the dark side.

Also of note, Baroni was not on hand to be carried around in a wheelchair, and part of me hopes he just got stuck on a ramp somewhere and nobody was there to help him.

The CHams vs Kobra Kai and Xavier Galaxy

Image: Bob Hanham

Image: Bob Hanham

The Cunninghams are rolling along towards their big showdown with the WWE Cruiserweight Classic Bollywood Boyz, so this was definitely one of those “tune up” matches you have on a go home show.

Again, I’ve written how much I love the CHams in ring work, and any team that can make “Jack and Carl Cunningham!” beloved by a non-hometown crowd, well, they’re damn sure doing something right. They have the most diverse set of tag team combo moves in ECCW, it’s like they’re spamming custom finishers in a WWE 2k game. They also have a ton of different ring gear, like it’s a WWE 2k game. They also have a pretty garbage, but catchy, entrance song, just like a WWE 2k game…

OK at this point they might actually be WWE 2k create-a-wrestlers. Maybe Scotty is in the back and he just keeps creating new versions of them and sends them out through the curtain using some sort of alien technology I am unaware of…

Anyhow, they were facing off against Xavier Galaxy and one of the members of his “Constellation”, Kobra Kai.

A) Kobra Kai is god damn fantastic, he works the crowd better than almost anyone I’ve seen in the last few years. Also, go find someone with better ring gear than him right now. Go on, I’ll wait right here.

B) I always talk about how I like things to go from point A to point B in wrestling. Like with Xavier, he was all of a sudden wrestling with King Khash one day and it felt like the dreaded “Oh shit, what do we do with these two guys, let’s just toss them together in a unit” type situations. Then Kobra Kai came along and was chilling with Xavier and I was confused about what happened to Khash. So for Xavier to come out and make it a stable, call it his “Constellation”, that works for me. That gets it from point A to point B.

It doesn’t always have to be some groundbreaking story, but at least I can go “oh a stable, that happens in wrestling, I get it”, and it allows me to stop questioning why they’re hanging together and lets them explain through their actions in the ring or through promo videos why they’re together and what their common goals are. As long as you address a new story line element, it goes a long way to making it work.

In the meantime, I’m just going to assume they all met at the Roxy after the people they were dancing with ran away in horror and it just ended up being three dudes standing on an empty dance floor talking about their favorite colognes to bath in.

Anyhow, Xavier continues to be one of the quickest risers in the company, as he is great on the mic, and he really works the slimy cowardly heel gimmick quite well. Kobra Kai interestingly enough wrestled Carl with respect, which is an odd dynamic for a heel guy. Carl even got the hot tag in the match, which just set the tone for the “What universe am I in?” vibe I got. Kai and Carl had a really good exchange at the start of the match with arm drags, hip tosses, arm locks, and all that fun jazz, which was the highlight of the match.

Alas, Kai can only carry Galaxy so far, as the CHams picked up the win and continue looking strong heading into their big match up with the Bollywood Boyz at the Commodore.

Smac Down

Image: Mary Diaz

Image: Mary Diaz

As I prepped myself for thirty minutes of intensive talking from Scotty Mac, I was pleasantly surprised to find a chair in the ring for Scotty to sit in. Last time it was blue scarves on the ring posts, this time it was scarves plus the chair. I hope Scotty keeps over compensating for his downfall by making the Smac Down set more and more elaborate to the point where there’s a Ferrari parked in the ring by the end of it and he’s forcing Don Hellion to be a living statue in a corner.

Before Scotty got to his guest, he called up Rob from F.I.L.E.S. News, a man who had done some previous collaboration with ECCW. Scotty called him out for not featuring him on any magazine covers, and promptly de-invited him into the ring. This caused around 100 people to call Scotty out on Rob’s Facebook page after the show was over. It was kind of awesome. Apparently Rob has very protective friends who don’t enjoy Scotty “the goof”.

Scotty’s guests on the night were the returning Jamie Diaz, and Air Adonis. Adonis was out there to announce he couldn’t wrestle at Ballroom Brawl VI (injury bug turned heel in April, it’s been on a tear ever since) and Diaz was there to express disappointment that 2/3 of DTA wouldn’t be able to tag up Commodore. Things got a bit heated when Diaz started getting angry with Adonis, to which Adonis dropped the “where have you been the last two years??” which got a very Jerry Springer like “OH NO HE DI’INT” from the crowd.

Out comes Shreddz and he calls Diaz out for whining and crying about not being on the card. Shreddz claimed that he has been working his ass off for the last two years so HE should be on the card. The only reason…

OK you ready for this? This was good.

The only reason Diaz would get a spot on the Ballroom card was because of his mother, Mary Diaz.

BOOM. Mic ****ing drop.

Crowd went nuts. Ate it up. It was even more Jerry Springer than ever. People were hugging each other, high fiving away. One guy was calling up his friend to tell him what just happened. It was nuts.

It was a really good line.

Diaz sold it perfectly, as he looked really pissed off at the insinuation. For those who haven’t seen Diaz, he looks a bit like Randy Orton, but if Randy Orton boiled down Randy Orton, put him in a protein shake, drank it, then busted out a ton of reps at the gym, and packed on more muscle.

The two started brawling, and Scotty ran from the ring (clutching his blue scarves like security blankets) and then Shreddz and Diaz proceeded to tear the house down.

You know Brock Lesnar matches? Where sometimes you start wondering “wait, is this a shoot match?” Like when Lesnar absolutely trucked Cena at Summerslam, part of you wondered if Brock just went off script and wanted to beat him up for real? That realism he brings to his matches, that’s what Diaz and Shreddz brought in this match.

A suplex, a normal basic, everyday suplex? Diaz did one on Shreddz and it sounded like he broke him in half. Like, I could almost hear JR screaming for mercy in my ear. It was LOUD. Even the most basic of moves looked like it hurt.

The fight spilled to the outside and Diaz at one point used Shreddz as a human bowling ball and just tossed him through a bunch of chairs. And not a simple, “land on a few chairs”, no, it was a “I want all of the chairs in the RCC to die, so I will use Shreddz as a wrecking ball” kind of toss.

The brawl ended when Shreddz fought back and reveresed a powerbomb into a spinebuster through two chairs. Diaz went through it so hard the metal chair was dented in half.

It was pure violence.

It has since been announced they will fight at Brawl, and I for one am calling it, this one will steal the show. These two just went balls out for a five minute hype match at the RCC, can you imagine what they’re going to do at the Commodore? Shreddz is going to want to prove he belongs, Diaz is going to want to prove he still has what it takes…these guys are going to pull out all the stops to come out on top.

It will be nuts.

El P vs King Khash – El P Open Challenge

Image: Bob Hanham

Image: Bob Hanham

King Khash, minus the Constellation (they were still licking their wounds from their earlier match) took on El P for the ECCW title.

I haven’t had a ton of matches to watch from Khash, and there is still a ton of potential there (he has a great look), but his matches so far (whether by design or not) have been rather down the middle. I get that he’s working as a bad guy, so he’s not going to do a ton to try and get the crowd on his side, but I still want to see him unleash some signature moves. Show us your style in the ring. Right now he does a lot of punches and snake noises. Or my latest theory is he’s been watching Cesar Millan and he’s making “CHH” noises to train his opponent to obey his commands. Or maybe he was warning us all that Kobra Kai was coming. I’m still working on this theory.

I kind of want to see a couple of neat moves thrown in there that stand out from the regular arsenal of moves all wrestlers have from Khash, that’s all I’m saying.

That being said, it was an average match. Obviously El P has to be careful here, no point of breaking yourself in half before a big match at Brawl, but they had a funny back and forth where El P sang happy birthday and delivered chops, and later in the match, Khash sang happy birthday to himself as he slapped the head of El P.

It was good to see Khash go in the ring for longer than five minutes, and I look forward to more from him. El P obviously won the match of course.

El P is El P, so I won’t waste your time praising him as usual.

I will note that there were no nipple twists or matrix chops, so I count that as a big win for me.

Scotty Mac vs Andy Bird

Image: Bob Hanham

Image: Bob Hanham

Scotty has been running Andy Bird down as of late, calling him a joke of a wrestler, and really pushing his boundaries with him. He’s basically violating every HR mission statement you could come up with. I am assuming the idea is to bring out a meaner side to Andy Bird, who if we’re being honest, hasn’t had a lot of impact on ECCW storylines in the last few years. It’s a good idea to try and bring an edge to a guy to see if it can freshen him up a bit.

And to an extent, it’s been working. Andy wrestled a more vicious style against Powers, and he did the same thing against Scotty tonight. The problem for me, is, Andy Bird got lost in the Scotty Mac Fall From Grace. What I mean is, Scotty is losing matches left and right. He’s losing them badly. He’s also missing out on title shots. Can’t win a Battle Royale to save his life. Things are not going well for him. Hell, it’s gotten so bad that he didn’t shave his god damn chest. Which for Scotty, that’s unheard of. That would be like a Canadian asking someone to turn the hockey game off or Carl Cunningham refusing to buy someone a burger. It just doesn’t happen.

So when Scotty loses to Andy, I view it more of “Oh shit, Scotty lost to someone else he normally would never lose to” and I get lost in Scotty’s downfall. It felt even more like “Bad Luck Scotty” when one of the security guards (one of Andy Bird’s Bird’s Nest fellas) got up on the ring to distract Scotty and cost him the match.

So now I view the match as “Oh man, Scotty can’t win AGAIN” more than “Andy Bird is really changing”.

That being said, Andy still has plenty of time to showcase whatever new persona he wants to. Maybe he should make a visual change to show that he’s changed as a wrestler (different ring gear?). If they keep going down that path it could eventually work.

I also want them to address a security guard costing Scotty a match, because come on, if I’m Scotty, I’m either firing or super kicking every security guard that knows Andy. Don’t you dare introduce a new element and not follow it up!

Good Brothers vs The Bowlers (w/ Outlaw) (Tag Team Championship Match)

Image: Mary Diaz

Image: Mary Diaz

I don’t know what the official name of the Outlaw and the Bowlers are (Bowlers Club? Bad Company? Strike Force? Split Decision? Three Hole? All have been rumored), but they’ve been feuding with Pesky and Everest in prECCW, so when the injury bug struck Adonis (King and Adonis were supposed to wrestle for the titles) it made sense to have the Bowlers step up to the plate.

Good Brothers used this as the ol’ tune up match for Brawl, and I enjoy the fact it further cements the feud between the two groups. They can slow play this one and have them fight over the next year and I will be one happy camper. I love it when a long term feud comes together.

The match itself was your typical “build to the hot tag” match, and I will say they got me on when I thought the hot tag was going to occur. Three Hole yanked the feet out from right under Everest when I thought it was about to go down. You sons a bitches got me.

I’m looking forward to post Brawl, for when the Bowlers and Outlaw can start getting wins, so they look like a threat, versus an incompetent team that can’t use the numbers game to their advantage, but I love the potential for these two teams to hate each other for many many months.

Good Brothers picked up the win and go on to defend their titles in a TLC match against the West Coast Express at Brawl. It will be a good challenge for the Good Bros who haven’t had the opportunity to really defend their belts much, and it will be a big step in trying to put a defining stamp on their first tag run.

Ethan H.D. vs Bishop (Canadian Championship Match)

Image: Mary Diaz

Image: Mary Diaz

Bishop came out with Natural (shoooooooocking) and Ethan H.D. came out with Santiago (which was kind of shocking as last we saw him, his knee was in three pieces). Santiago and Ethan looked to be on very friendly terms as the Amerikan Gunz look to be less vicious, and more about the Amerikan Hugz nowadays.

Santiago got on the mic and asked Ethan H.D. for a match at Commodore. He asked that it be for the Canadian title, because why not have two best friends tear the house down together? Ethan accepted and Santiago decided to stick around to make sure Natural didn’t do Natch things and cost Ethan the Canadian title.

This was the main event of the show, so I was happy Bishop took his time on this one, as both men battled and put on a show for the crowd. Going to war with Ethan and struggling to put him away made both men look good as they are both highly ranked wrestlers, so I was happy.

Ten seconds into the match Ethan is out there spiraling through the ropes on a dive to the outside. I still have reservations about the crowd accepting him as a true babyface (dude was such an iconic heel in the Gunz, and he still comes out to an American flag, both are high hills to conquer), but I have no doubt Ethan will stop at nothing to make it happen. The guy is just fun to watch and is proving he was a great Pac Cup winner.

Natural twice saved the bacon of Bishop, and eventually Santiago returned the favor saving Ethan from a pin. I really liked the dynamic of both guys protecting their boys during the match. Made it feel like Bishop or Ethan could have won the match at any time, which made both guys look strong.

In the end Ethan got the win after Bishop got distracted by Santiago and got into an argument with Natch. As Bishop returned to the ring, he walked right into a Curb Stomp, and Ethan picked up the 1, 2, 3.

After the match Santiago celebrated with Ethan…right into Santiago knocking Ethan out cold. Yes, that’s right, Amerikan Hugz are over. Long live Amerikan Gun? Santiago’s move on Ethan was pretty slick by the way.

After towering over Ethan, and making their match at Commodore even more intriguing, Sid Sylum showed up and ran after Bishop. The two brawled on the outside (and during this chaos I’m pretty sure Santiago continued to beat the shit out of Ethan. There were a lot of beatings being handed out, it was hard to keep track), then they were separated and Bishop was taken to the back.

Except Sylum wasn’t done yet. Sylum ran after Bishop, and well…

Yep, pretty slick spot to set up for their Commodore match.

Also of note, Vince, head of security, was once again knocked out. I will make sure I record every instance of Vince being laid out, as I feel it’s my duty to the world to let people know about it.

Awards of the Night

Match of the Night:

Image: Bob Hanham

Image: Bob Hanham

Shreddz vs Jamie Diaz

I described it in enough detail above, but I just want to re-iterate how different this match felt from all the others. It had such a raw primal energy to it that it really stood out on the card. It even overshadowed the feud between Bishop and Sid for me because the violence that Diaz and Shreddz brought is what you want to see from Bishop and Sid (due to the depth of emotion in their feud).

Obviously it’s easy to say “Hey Bishop, go toss Sid Sylum through all of the chairs, his health be damned!” and I’m not suggesting they do that, I’m just saying the pure energy of the Shreddz/Diaz match really set a high bar to overcome on the night.

I truly can’t wait to see if these guys can bring the same energy to the Commodore. But safely. Don’t kill each other.

Personality of the Night:

Image: Mary Diaz

Image: Mary Diaz

Santiago

He played nice, and even though you could feel a heel turn coming (no way two friends battle at the Commodore for “the healthy competition of it”) he really sold it on the mic. I really enjoyed Santiago talking softly and pretending to be all nice, before revealing that in fact, nope, he’s still the dick you love to hate.

Runner up award to Galaxy for starting to do kissing noises before he talks on the mic, however. He started making the kissing noises and one lady audibly shouted “EWWWW”, which almost broke Galaxy. Stuff like that, adding to your character here and there, that’s the stuff I love to see, and Galaxy is good at that.

Story-line of the Night:

Image: Bob Hanham

Image: Bob Hanham

Bishop vs Sylum

This feud is so deep it could be a book. I love it to death. It’s unfortunately the kind of feud you have to be a hard core ECCW fan to probably truly appreciate, as you need to understand all the nuances of it to understand the emotional depths they’re hitting on this one.

Hell, I’ve only been watching for a couple of years and I missed the prime of Bishop and Sid, and I know I truly don’t understand the gravity of this feud. If you’ve seen the rise and fall of Sid and Bish together, how can you not love this feud? It’s one of those story lines that mixes in reality (or at least a reality that makes sense to, as in “I can understand why Bish is mad at his friend leaving”) making it plausible, making it all the more easier to accept.

That being said, even a casual person can appreciate two big men going at it in the ring.

And honestly, watch the promos from Bishop and tell me he’s not doing the best character work in ECCW right now. Dude is in pain. He doesn’t want his friend to leave. He doesn’t want to hurt his friend. Hell, he’s scared what they’re going to do to each other. He’s scared how badly he’s going to have to hurt Sylum to stop him from killing him. It’s fan-****-tastic.

As for Sylum, I am super excited to see him wrestle. I’m sad it will be the only time I get to see him wrestle, but he has been getting stronger as the feud has been going on, and has been starting to kill it in his promos. You also know he is going to want to make his last match a memorable one, and he is going to want to tear the roof off of the Commodore.

I can’t wait to see how these two end the show together.

Move of the Night:

Image: Mary Diaz

Shreddz Spinebuster on Diaz through chairs

I legitimately thought Diaz might be broken in half. Such a visual, powerful image. It was brutal. People started gathering around and taking pictures of the carnage, that’s how you know it was a good spot.

Entrance of the Night:

Three Hole

These guys are going to have the award named after them soon.

Wrestler of the Night:

syl

Sid Sylum

The guy was legit hurt and broken and out of wrestling, and he is coming back to take on Bishop in one of the biggest shows in ECCW history. That takes some balls (and a healthy blind eye to personal health) to do so.

Think about how nervous he must be. You have to close out the Commodore and leave behind a lifetime of wrestling, something he’s been doing since he’s 17? Leaving behind friendships he’s had for half of his life? It’s closing a chapter on his life, so it not only has a professional impact, it has a personal and emotional one too.

It’s a match he’s going to think about the rest of his life. He’s going to want to make it perfect. He’s going to want to nail it. The night before Commodore, he isn’t going to get any sleep.

Sid Sylum, I can honestly say you’re one of the nicest, most genuine wrestler’s I’ve met, and I wish you good luck sir. Tear that house down. Tear it all down.

Final Thoughts

I’ll keep this brief because as usual this review turned into a monster, but I will say that while Ballroom Brawl VI doesn’t have the beautiful lead up BB5 had, and while BB5 set the bar so high I can’t imagine anything ever topping it, what BB6 has going for it is desire.

Desire to prove people wrong. Desire to blow people away. Desire to keep setting the bar higher.

You have young guys like The Cunninghams, The Good Brothers, and Shreddz who want to show they can be relied on to deliver top notch matches.

You have veterans like the Bollywood Boyz, Yukon, Matthews, Jamie Diaz and Westcoast Express who want to show that young people still have to go through them to earn their spot.

You have El Phantasmo who wants to show he can hang with anybody, in any ring.

You have Ethan HD wanting to prove that ECCW’s faith in him was correct, and you have Santiago wanting to show that he’s not just a tag team guy, he can go with the best of them.

And you have Bishop and Sid, two guys who want to show you what you’ll be missing when Sylum retires, and what you might have missed the last decade.

It might not live up to Ballroom Brawl V. Who knows. But it won’t be through lack of effort. I have a feeling people are going to bring their A game to Brawl, ready to surprise people. You’re not going to want to miss it.


Ed73c95199a7c52e70a7ff5fe66a1e13?s=96&d=mm&r=g
Wyatt Arndt
Daily Hive Vancouver sports writer

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