Sunday 16 June 2013

PWG 'Is Your Body Ready?' Preview

It's been a long time since Pro Wrestling Guerilla's last show. After All Star Weekend 9 in March, PWG took a two month break for reasons I'm not really sure.

The absence has also felt longer for me as well, considering the last show I watch from them was December's Mystery Vortex a good few months ago. And since then a good bit has happened in Reseda, California.

PWG said goodbye to El Generico as he went back to Mexico to help the orphans, Eddie Edwards and Roderick Strong have formed an exciting tag team together to add to PWG's already excellent tag team division, we've seen more hardcore type matches thanks to the rise of Drake Younger, and Adam Cole has established him as a top heel in the company.

It isn't so much a case where PWG is going from strength to strength, but rather them keeping up their consistently top notch product, solidifying themselves as the most exciting independent promotion in the US. And when PWG returns with 'Is Your Body Ready?' on June 15th, I'm sure we'll see much of the same stuff we've come to expect form PWG over the past three years or so.

Tag Team Match
RockNES Monsters (Johnny Goodtime & Johnny Yuma) vs. Unbreakable F'N Machines (Brain Cage & Michael Elgin)
This is a match I'm only half looking forward to really. Simply put, the RockNES Monsters just don't do anything for me.

While PWG's tag team division isn’t exactly filled with physically imposing wrestlers, most of them have a certain presence about them that make them look like a solid tag team. The Young Bucks have their cockiness, fluid tag team moves, and all round brotherly chemistry. Super Smash Bros. have a good variety of speed and strength, complimented by a good balance of humour and a never say die attitude which they seem to bring off very well.

The RockNES Monsters however, don't have any of that. Their humour feels forced, their move-set needs too much of a suspension of belief at times, and they carry themselves like a bunch of teenagers rather than wrestlers. Some will argue that they tick all the boxes on what a PWG tag team is like, but for me they don't show off the qualities that could make them a decent tag team.

When they step into the ring on Saturday I'm hoping for more of a one sided contest, which, may not be something that PWG does often, but when you have Brian Cage and Michael Elgin as your opponents I think their should be an exception.

While the Unbreakable F'n Machines are better suited to singles action, both of these guys are still capable of putting on really fun tag team matches. Cage showed it while teaming with the Taylor's, and Elgin briefly showed it when he teamed with Roderick Strong in ROH.

Both men are on an extremely good run at the moment, and although they're facing a team I'm not a fan of, I'm still expecting an enjoyable match.

Singles Match
Davey Richards vs. Kyle O'Reilly
When people say that PWG possesses all the different styles of wrestling to suit every type of fan, I'm always one to disagree.

PWG may have many different styles of matches, accompanied by every type of wrestler from high flyer to powerhouse, but I feel the technical based side of wrestling is always the part that gets the least amount of attention.

Kyle O'Reilly's style doesn't always come through when he teams with Adam Cole (which he's done most of the time in PWG), while Davey Richards normally finds himself in tag team bouts as well, or even singles matches against people who don't always compliment his technical side.

This Saturday both O'Reilly and Davey Richards have the chance to wrestle that way suits them best. If you saw Ring of Honor's event 'Defy or Deny 2' this past March, you'll know that these two men work very well together.

At 'Is Your Body Ready?', I expect the same type of match-up, or at least I hope so anyway. They might go straight into a slug fest after a few minutes into the match (which I really hope they don't do), but the option for them to wrestle a mat-based match is right there for them. And I hope they take it.

Tag Team Match
DoJo Bros (Eddie Edwards & Roderick Strong) vs. Chuck Taylor & Johnny Gargano
I don't want to turn this into some kind of ROH vs. PWG column, but they're are just some things that PWG do right compared to ROH. The formation of Edwards and Strong is simply one of them.

While neither man were doing a whole lot in either promotion for a good while, they were doing some good stuff in Japan when they teamed up. Excalibur looked at the situation (or even Edwards and Strong themselves) and decided to bring the DoJo Bros to Pro Wrestling Guerilla.

It's already proved to be a great success because since forming they've put on some fantastic bouts. I haven't seen all of them, mind, but I did see their double slot at Mystery Vortex where they put on extremely good matches against The Young Bucks and Super Smash Bros.

They face two guys who teamed together at All Star Weekend 9, Chuck Taylor and Johnny Gargano. Gargano, who's mostly known for his stuff in DGUSA, made his debut for PWG that weekend, and is said to have had an immediate impact there. He, as well as the ever consistent Chuck Taylor, should make for very good opponents against the DoJo Bros.

Singles Match
Kevin Steen vs. Drake Younger
Definitely one of the more interesting matches under the circumstances of what Drake Younger announced after this match-up was made. The 'Ultraviolent Golden Boy' a few weeks ago announced on Twitter that he has stopped doing Hardcore matches. After years of abuse in highly violent matches it's a smart move from Younger, and one that I commend him for.

It's an announcement which I'm sure Excalibur didn't see coming, and you have to wonder what he might have done with him and Kevin Steen if that announcement didn't happen. It is well known that Kevin Steen is quite a hardcore wrestler himself, and while their match was also going to be contested under normal rules, it wouldn't be too hard to believe that this match was going to lead to something more violent.

So with that said, what will happen between these two wrestlers. Steen has also been someone who's been in top feuds in PWG. Most recently it was Adam Cole, and before that it was the likes of The Young Bucks and El Generico. That's why the possibility of something big happening after this match was always going to be strong. And it might still be big as well.

Drake Younger is very over with the Reseda crowd and PWG may well want to capitalize on his popularity very soon. While hardcore rules may be out of the question, the possibility of a fed between these two men is still strong.

Tag Team Match
AR Fox & Samuray del Sol vs. The Young Bucks
Arguably the most exciting tag team match on the card here. AR Fox and Samuray del Sol, who only made their debut for Pro Wrestling Guerilla this past March at All Star Weekend 9, take on the top tag team on the roster, The Young Bucks.

While I've seen very little of Fox and del Sol, I do know the style in which they wrestle in, and I'm sure Matt and Nick Jackson will be able to get the best out of both men. They're the kind of tag team who can work with anyone, but always seem to be at their most exciting when up against another fast paced team.

Of course, it's a match that won't lead to anywhere for one team. Although AR Fox may stick around, Samuray del Sol has already signed a contract with WWE. He more than likely won't get any 'Thank You' chants from the Reseda crowd, but the I expect the team itself will get a good reaction.

As for The Young Bucks, I'm sure they'll just continue to take things in their stride. I suspect that another Tag Team title run won't happen any time soon, but I'm sure they'll be happy enough putting on must-see matches against any sort of tag team.

Both teams don’t have a whole lot to wrestle for. One is going to split up after this show, and the other will continue to do what they've done for years. But while this match doesn't have a lot at stake, I still expect this to be a fantastic match.

PWG World Championship
Iron Man Match
Adam Cole vs. Sami Callihan
The must-see match here at 'Is Your Body Ready?', and for a good few reasons as well. The first is probably the most obvious, and that's the Iron Man stipulation itself. With this only being the second Iron Man match in PWG's 10 year existence, the stipulation itself is still very fresh.

It's a match that many people can't wait to see, but that fans that this match relies on most is that in the American Region Post that night. Without looking up the attendance of this venue, I'm guessing it holds around 300-400 every show, and while they are normally very rowdy, you have to wonder how they'll do in a 60 minute Iron Man match. The small crowd may very well grow tired after watching it, especially after over 2 hours of wrestling beforehand. Also, the hot Californian weather in such a cramped venue might not help either.

The lack of a back-story is also something that might hurt this match. When you're talking about 60-minute Iron Man matches, they always seem to have an edge to them to help them fill up that time limit. With Cole and Callihan however, there's nothing there for them. This is a match that is neither a feud ender nor a feud starter, so I expect it'll be difficult enough to tell a story in the ring that fans will be able to get stuck into.

But, these are still two popular wrestlers who will no doubt go at this match 100%, and for very different reasons as well. The young and talented Adam Cole has been on a great roll over the past couple of months so I'm sure he'll be going into this match fully focused on putting on an exciting performance. Sami Callihan, on the other hand, will be wrestling his last match for PWG before heading off to WWE, so will no doubt be looking to leave a lasting mark in Reseda.

The fact that these two men have wrestled each other numerous times before also benefits this stipulation very much. They know each other strengths, and I'm sure they know what works, so going into this match we should expect two guys with very good chemistry together.

The heat, small crowd and long time limit may still play the biggest part in this match, but if there's two guys on the PWG roster now that can put on an engaging 60-minute Iron Man match together, it's probably these two. 

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