This is the Fightful.com live viewing party for EVOLVE 77! This is also the final appearance in EVOLVE for Chris Hero, who will face Zack Sabre, Jr., in the main event before reporting full time to WWE. The EVOLVE Title also is on the line, as Timothy Thatcher defends against Jeff Cobb. Be sure to come back here at 3 p.m. EST to follow all of the action.
Welcome, everyone! The show is set to start at the top of the hour... no pre-show this afternoon and, hopefully, no ring issues, either.
Here we go... Lenny Leonard opens the show, referring to this being the final EVOLVE appearance for Chris Hero, whom Leonard calls the greatest wrestler in the history of independent wrestling.
Darby Allin vs. Barrett Brown
After both wrestlers get to the ring, Ethan Page's music hits. He starts leisurely walking down the aisle when the Gatekeepers come out of the crowd and attack Allin from behind... no doubt retribution for Allin stopping the Gatekeepers from Zack Sabre, Jr. choking him out last night. Page gets on the microphone and challenges a beaten-down Allin to a match... right now! Brown protests and gets wiped out by a clothesline by Page. Page changes his mind and orders the Gatekeepers to team up against Allin and Brown. Allin gets on the mic, calls Page a coward, and says he doesn't care if it's one on two, two on two, or three on two. That sounds good to Page, and now it's a handicap match instead.
Darby Allin, Zack Sabre, Jr. & Barrett Brown vs. The Gatekeepers & Ethan Page
Allin and Brown get the best of the Gatekeepers early. Allin snaps off a nice hurancarana. Brown with a superkick sends the other Gatekeeper out to the floor. Allin with a no-hands plancha, then a nice moonsault press off the top rope by Brown wipes out both Gatekeepers. Back in the ring and the Gatekeepers assert themselves, back dropping Allin out onto Brown on the floor. McMassive busts off an AMAZING somersault tope out to the floor onto both Allin and Brown. Back in the ring and Page working over Allin in the corner, then hits a release vertical suplex. Rumblecrunch in for the first time legally, hits Allin with a back suplex, followed by a leaping kneedrop. McMassive in as Allin in no man's land in the heels' corner, and lights up Allin with an overhand chop. Allin trying to fight back, McMassive hooks him and drags him back to the corner. Scoop slam by Rumblecrunch. Allin trying to get to the corner to make the tag but Rumblecrunch pulls Brown off the apron and sends him into the ringpost. Gatekeepers hoist Allin for a double team, but he flips behind them and goes after Page. The Gatekeepers cut him off. Allin tries to get at Page again and takes a double chokeslam from the Gatekeepers. Page talking trash and pulls Allin into position for a package piledriver. Allin rolls through, drills Page with a headbutt. Page able to tag out and now the Gatekeepers trying to double team Allin, who ducks a double clothesline and levels both big men with a high cross body. Allin is playing the part of the underdog face to perfection right now. Zack Sabre, Jr. is out and in Allin's corner! Now it's a six man tag! Allin makes the tag and Sabre is in blasting both Gatekeepers with european uppercuts. Shotgun dropkick by Sabre to Rumblecrunch. Sabre now pinballing back and forth between both corners, hitting both Gatekeepers with running European uppercuts, then dodges a corner attack by McMassive, who squashes his partner. Series of palm strikes by Sabre drop McMassive, but the pin attempt only gets two. Rumblecrunch charges in and drills Sabre with a spear. Brown launches off the top rope with a missile dropkick to both Gatekeepers, but eats a wicked-looking lariat from Page! Page has Brown up... border toss to the floor launches Brown onto the other four men into the match! Now it's Page and Sabre on the floor as everyone else recovers. Page with a forearm, and they trade stiff slaps. Page and Sabre now brawling into the crowd, which looks significant bigger than the turnout last night. Page and Sabre trading European uppercuts, and all six man now battling into the crowd... as Allin starts climbing a post... LAUNCHES HIMSELF BACK DOWN ONTO THE OTHER FIVE MEN! Darby Allin with more incredible daredevilry! Allin now leading Page back to the ring. The crowd is chanting Darby. Allin back in and crawling at Page who is begging off and powders out to the floor. Rumblecrunch in behind Allin and de-cleats him with a discus lariat. Brown hits a tornado DDT on Rumblecrunch. Page with an elevated Flatliner on Brown. Sabre hooks Page in the triangle choke! Page able to get free, delivers a powerbomb on Page. Allin leaps off the top rope with a diving headbutt on Page. McMassive with a Black Hole Slam on Allin... then charges into two European uppercuts by Sabre, who leaps and ensnares McMassive in a triangle. McMassive tries to stack and slam Sabre, who counters into a kimura with a bodyscissors... and McMassive taps! Highly entertaining opening match...
WIN: Darby Allin, Barrett Brown & Zack Sabre, Jr.
Tracy Williams vs. Laredo Kid
Williams taking things right to the mat with a takedown. They go back and forth on the mat with Williams starting to work the left arm of Laredo. Williams delivers on a stiff forearm and a chop, then drops Laredo with a running forearm off the ropes. Schoolboy pin by Williams after Laredo tries a leapfrog, then Williams goes for a submission but Laredo wiggles free and gets to the ropes. Laredo blocks a lariat by Williams, snaps off a standing headscissors, then a superkick. Williams out to the floor, and Laredo scales to the top in the nearest corner and hits a big swanton dive out to the floor! Laredo really got some height on that leap... Back into the ring we go, Laredo with the cover but only gets two. Laredo with a couple of measured stomps to Williams, brings Hot Sauce back up and hits a chop to the chest in the corner. Williams turns Laredo into the corner and answers with a chop of his own. Laredo reverses Williams into the corner, connects on a big palm strike. Irish whip, Williams cuts off Laredo's charge with a back elbow and uncorks with a shotgun dropkick. Laredo rolls to the adjacent corner, Williams with a charging forearm, then a brainbuster. Cover only gets two. Williams slowing the pace down a bit now, forearms Laredo, hooks his left arm over the middle rope and delivers a chop. Now ground and pound by Williams as Laredo is down against the ropes. Laredo up and fires back with forearms, but Williams drops him with a big boot. Williams takes him down and goes for a crossface but Laredo gets a foot back into the ropes before the hold is hooked, forcing a break. Laredo firing back with a series of kicks, Williams cuts him off with a modified Michinoku Driver. Pin attempt only gets two. Forearm and a chop by Williams as Laredo knocked back into the corner. Irish whips Laredo, who goes through the top and middle ropes, catches Williams with a high kick. Laredo to the top, but Williams avoids his attack and hits a nasty looking lariat that only gets a two count. Both men now trading forearms at center ring. Williams gets the advantage with some clubbing shots across the back, then hooks Laredo for a suplex, Laredo drops down behind, hooks Williams and hits a Falcon Arrow-type move from a modified cradle slam... pin only gets two. Laredo lays in a couple of kicks, then a slam and heads to the top rope... phoenix splash but Williams moves. Williams with a diving forearm off the ropes, hooks the crossface and Laredo immediately taps out. Nice round of applause for Laredo Kid after the match.
WIN: Tracy Williams
Chris Dickinson & Jaka vs. Sammy Guevara & Jason Kincaid
Huge reaction from the crowd for Guevara, a Texas native, who is making his EVOLVE debut here. Kincaid, a Pro contributor here at Fightful.com, scored an impressive submission win over DUSTIN last night. Jaka and Dickinson both wrestled in singles action last night, splitting their matches.
Jaka and Kincaid starting things off... the Catch Point duo of Dickinson and Jaka definitely with the size advantage. Jaka picks Kincaid up and charges him into the neutral corner. Kincaid dodges Jaka's strike, back to center ring and bows to Jaka. Kincaid with a side headlock into an arm wringer at center ring. Jaka able to reverse the arm wringer. Kincaid does a handstand flip off the ropes to reverse it, then into a seated meditative position as they stand off. More innovative stuff from Kincaid. Guevara and Dickinson now have tagged into the match. Guevara with a side headlock, Dickinson with a reverse waistlock takedown. Back to their feet, Guevara with a hammerlock on Dickinson, who hooks a side headlock, Guevara shoves him off and Dickinson with a shoulder tackle. Guevara with a nice back flip into a dropkick by Dickinson, then tags Jaka who also eats a dropkick. Now Jaka lighting up Guevara with some nasty sounding strikes. Blind tag by Kincaid. Guevara with a leaping knee to Jaka, Kincaid leaps in from the apron with a rolling neckbreaker. Another tag by Kincaid and Guevara as Dickinson and Jaka regroup on the floor. Guevara fakes a dive to the floor, but Dickinson back in, hooks a full nelson and a release suplex that flings Guevara behind him. Jaka with a charging spin kick into the corner, covers and only gets two. Now Jaka working over Guevara with a double chop across the back. More chops now from the freshly entered Dickinson, then a boot choke in the neutral corner. Snap mare into a kick to the back by Dickinson, who covers for a two count. Tag to Jaka, who connects on a headbutt to the gut, shoots Guevara off into a charging forearm to the throat, then covers for two. Jaka grapevines Guevara's legs, tags Dickinson who delivers a measured stomp to his defenseless opponent. Guevara trying to fight back with chops but Dickinson answers with a couple of wicked slaps, then applies an inverted Boston crab. Dickinson walks it back over to his corner, Jaka in and kicks Guevara while he's still in the hold. Jaka cuts off another attempted comeback by Guevara with a release overhead belly to belly suplex that only gets a two count. Dickinson in and circles Guevara a bit, Guevara with a couple of forearms but Dickinson hits a clothesline that turns Guevara inside out. Dickinson now with a high-angle Boston crab, but Guevara is able to fight his way to the ropes and force a break. Two measured kicks to the back by Dickinson, who steps on the chest and throat of Guevara using the ropes for extra leverage. Tag to Jaka. Jaka elevates Guevara for a delayed suplex. Dickinson in and hooks Guevara on the other side for the tandem suplex. Jaka pin attempt only gets a two count. Jaka standing between Guevara and his corner basically daring Guevara to hit him, Guevara with a few forearms, then gets dropped by a palm strike by Jaka. Headbutt by Jaka, and now the Catch Point newcomers going for a double team. He rolls through an attempted back suplex, hits a leaping spinwheel kick to both, then hits both with a standing sliced bread no. 2! Guevara makes the long crawl to his corner, and finally makes the hot tag to Kincaid, who springs into the ring with a cross body on Dickinson. Jaka hurls Kincaid, who lands into a headscissors in Dickinson. Jaw breaker by Kincaid, who ducks a lariat by Jaka and delivers a suicide dive to Dickinson out on the floor. Kincaid avoids an attack by Jaka, who's on the apron... shoulder block by Kincaid... into a sunset flip powerbomb that brings Jaka down on his partner! Now Guevara scaling to the top in his own corner... LEAPING SHOOTING STAR PRESS TO THE FLOOR! Jaka back into the ring, Kincaid to the top in his corner, Jaka retreats to his own corner... Kincaid rope walks down the top rope and hits a coast to coast dropkick! 630 splash by Guevara! Kincaid goes for the cover but Dickinson pulls him off into a release German suplex. Dickinson hits a huge running big boot to Guevara, then powerbombs Kincaid, holds on, elevates him for another powerbomb but passes him to Jaka, who nails Kincaid with a German suplex. Jaka goes for the pin but he isn't legal. Now he tags in. Jaka is looking a little wobbly. Kincaid ducks a double clothesline, Guevara with a springboard missile dropkick to Dickinson and Jaka both. Guevara pinballs into both corners with leg lariats on Dickinson and Jaka, both are down and Guevara and Kincaid to the top. Guevara goes for a Shooting Star Press, kincaid with a double stomp. Both miss. Dickinson spikes Kincaid, then combines with Jaka for the doomsday chokeslam. That's enough to put down Kincaid for the count.
WIN: Chris Dickinson & Jaka
Tracy Williams to the ring to congratulate the Catch Point duo, and puts over the Catch Point style because of the lack of risk compared to a high-flying style. Now Larry Dallas is out. He brings up Dickinson getting physical with him last time and says he'll file charges if anyone puts his hands on him. Dallas asks Williams if he will give Dickinson and Jaka a shot at the tag titles. Now Kincaid is in with some very... esoteric words. Dickinson tries to get at Kincaid, but he's held back by Williams and Jaka, as Kincaid goes into a seated lotus in the corner.
Fred Yehi vs. ACH
Crowd seems behind both guys as this one gets under way. This match quickly goes to the mat. Yehi works a headlock then a neck vice, ACH counters, briefly gets a one count. Back to their feet and there's a shoving match. ACH uses Yehi's own catch phrase against him, telling him "YOU'RE in trouble!" Yehi sells it, fully flabbergasted. Yehi with a snap mare, then a couple of shoulder tackles. ACH avoids the stomp by Yehi, side headlock takeover but Yehi counters with a head scissors. ACH with a hand stand, flips forward and hooks Yehi in a side headlock of his own. Lenny Leonard putting over the finality of Yehi's Koji clutch on commentary as the two continue to go back and forth with technical exchanges and dodges to some of their signature maneuvers, such as ACH's dropkicks and Yehi's stomps. Another stand off, when they re-engage, Yehi with a kick to the gut, a forearm to the back and now an arm wringer. ACH rolls through, reverses, snap mares Yehi and lights him up with a chop as Yehi gets back to standing. Yehi blocks another chop, stomps ACH's instep, sweeps the legs, and catches ACH with a shotgun dropkick. Crowd chanting Yehi's name but it looks to be a 50/50 audience with ACH also getting chants. Chops in the corner by Yehi drive ACH to a seated position. Back elbow by Yehi as he whips ACH off the ropes, then a stomp to the thigh of ACH, hooking a neck vice, then transitions into a stump puller. Yehi tying up ACH's legs in knots now, and turns ACH over into a nasty looking leg and back submission. ACH able to grab the bottom rope. Back to their feet, Yehi chops ACH, hits a dsnap suplex and floats over into a pin that gets two. ACH looks ready to fly, Yehi cuts him off and hits a German. Yehi calls for another German, ACH fighting it off. ACH gets free of the reverse waistlock, takes Yehi down and puts him in position for the Muta lock. Yehi is pretty close to the ropes, though, and he gets there to force a break. Now ACH with a solid chop in the corner to Yehi. Another chop that lands right in the face. Another chop, this time to the chest, followed by a snap mare, a knee drop and a pair of pin attempts that only get a one count each. Forearm across the back by ACH, then a chop. Yehi answers with a chop. ACH with a combo of strikes capped by a standing dropkick. Cover only gets two. Yehi shoots ACH off the ropes, ACH counters with a leg trip, into a double stomp across the back, then a basement dropkick to a seated Yehi. Yehi to the floor, fakes out ACH who was going for a dive... but ACH lands on the apron and hip tosses Yehi over the top rope down to the floor... follows up with a running soccer kick down the apron that levels Yehi! ACH grabbing at his foot after that impact as the count begins on Yehi outside the ring. Both men back in now and slow to their feet. Each man on one knee as they're trading strikes, now exchanging slaps as they work back to standing. More open handed slaps. ACH with a forearm, Yehi ducks the follow with a modified back drop. ACH ducks a clothesline by Yehi, matrix kip up. Another stomp to the foot by Yehi, but ACH dodges the follow and Yehi eats a super kick. Lots of counters and reversals. ACH goes for a victory roll, gets two, Yehi reverses into a pinning predicament of his own, ACH kicks out. ACH into the corner, Yehi goes for another foot stomp, ACH avoids it and hits a foot stomp of his own. Shotgun dropkick by Yehi after a criss cross spot. Yehi with a powerbomb and folds up ACH for the pin... only a two count. Discus forearm by Yehi, falls on ACH for the cover... only two and a half... ACH slow to rise and Yehi now slapping and stomping ACH who remains down. ACH fires back with a series of rapid-fire chops on Yehi back against the ropes. Yehi answers with a series of chops of his own. Yehi runs back against the far ropes, ACH counters with a clothesline. ACH goes for the same, Yehi cuts him off with a forearm. ACH hooks Yehi and hits a brainbuster for the 1... 2... 3! Very abrupt ending to a match that went back and forth the entire time.
No DQ: Matt Riddle vs. DUSTIN
No doubt who the crowd will be cheering in this one. DUSTIN attacked Riddle last night with a chair after Riddle's win over ACH, which adds some extra flavor to this already announced match.
Riddle goes right after Taylor, gaining side control and hitting some MMA knees to the body. Riddle keeping the waistlock, back to the side and hits another knee to the head. Dustin standing in the corner as Riddle hits a couple of forearms, a European uppercut, then a charging forearm, followed by an Exploder. Riddle with a senton. Dustin out to the floor, side steps a baseball slide by Riddle, and wallops Riddle with a chair across the back. Dustin fires Riddle into the seats and he goes bowling-ball style into about the third row. More of the same on the other side of the crowd. Dustin leading Riddle back to the ringside area, goes for it again, and Riddle reverses, as Dustin takes a flip bump into the chairs. Riddle sets Dustin in a chair and now with a series of forearms to the head. Riddle holds up a chair and asks the fans to hold it in place. They are more than happy to oblige as Riddle backs up for a big head of steam and delivers on a running kick into the chair, driving it into the head of Dustin. When Riddle goes to follow up, Dustin rakes his eyes. Now Dustin setting up a pile of chairs at ringside. He leads Riddle over... hits a forearm, backs up, charges... but Riddle catches him. Exploder onto the chairs!!!!! Crowd with a "Holy s---" chant. Riddle follows up with a measured smash of the chair down across the back of Dustin. Now Dustin just trying to retreat, and Riddle follows him and a brawl ensues near, and then on, the merch table. Both men standing on the table and Dustin suplexes Riddle on it. It doesn't break, the table keels over and both men to the floor. Back to the ringside area, and Dustin drives Riddle's head into the ringpost. Now Dustin goes under the ring and gets out another table. Riddle still down selling on the floor. Riddle coming firing back with a series of rapid fire forearms to the head of Dustin. Dustin down on the chairs... Riddle backs up and goes for a running senton... Dustin moves and Riddle lands on the chairs. Dustin sets Riddle on the table, into the ring... running tope over the top and THROUGH the table! Dustin gets Riddle back into the ring, double stomp off the top rope... only a two count! Riddle powers to his feet. Crowd is going nuts as Ridddle lets loose a war cry... then eats a super kick. Dustin DDTs Riddle on a chair at center ring. 1... 2... Riddle with a shoulder up at two and a half. Now Dustin bringing more chairs into the ring. Dustin building a chair puramid... four chairs, two by two facing each other, with four more on top of those. Dustin heading to the top rope, Riddle cuts him off with a forearm and a rapid fire sweries of strikes. Riddle superplexes Dustin off the top, DOWN THROUGH THE CHAIRS!!!! Another "Holy s---" chant, and I have to concur. Crowd chanting "Bro!" for Riddle, as he starts delivering a series of stomps to Dustin, then hammer fists, before covering Dustin and hooking both legs for the three count.
WIN: Matt Riddle
EVOLVE Title: Timothy Thatcher (w/ Stokely Hathaway) defends vs. Jeff Cobb
Before the match begins, Cobb gets on the microphone and dedicates the match to his and Thatcher's mutual trainer, Oliver John. We go right to the grappling in this match. The first exchange ends after what looked like a kimura attempt by Cobb. The second also gets to the mat before Thatcher brings Cobb back standing and gets him into the corner. Referee makes a five count, Thatcher breaks with a shove. They go nose to nose, Thatcher knees Cobb in the solar plexus. Thatcher went for the arm but Cobb with a go-behind. Thatcher with a drop toehold, but Cobb counters any submission move. Cobb back to standing but Thatcher fends him off with an upkick. Now Cobb grinds an elbow into the spine of Cobb and gains the upper hand on Thatcher, who is facedown on the mat. Cobb backs off and beckons for Thatcher to stand. Knuckle lock. Thatcher steps through and goes for the left arm. He starts to bend back the hand when Cobb clobbers him with a forearm to the back of the head using his free arm. Now Cobb with a standing front facelock. Thatcher reverses into a hammerlock, possibly going for the chicken wing. Cobb fights free of it, gut wrenches Thatcher and hits a dead lift suplex. Cobb charges the corner with a running shoulder, Thatcher moves, Cobb hits the middle turnbuckle hard and Thatcher drives Cobb shoulder-first into the mat, now going to work on the left arm on the mat. Thatcher working the arm as the fans chant Cobb's name. Cobb able to float over, but Thatcher counters again into a hammerlock as Cobb gets a foot into the bottom rope. Thatcher with a couple of stomps to the left shoulder of Cobb, drags his head under the bottom rope and hits an elbow smash. Thatcher smashes Cobb's sternum into the apron, and he spills out to the floor. Forearm uppercut by Thatcher as they make their way around the ringside area. Now both men trading forearms and European uppercuts before getting back into the ring. Thatcher pulls Cobb into a clinch, hits a knee to the gut, then a forerm uppercut, followed by a Russian legsweep. Cobb cringing and holding his left arm after the impact as Thatcher goes back to the arm, trying for an armbar. Cobb goes into a bridge and gets his free hand to the bottom rope to force a break. Cobb battles back with a couple of chops, now an exchange of strikes, with Cobb getting the better of it and hitting several forearms, followed by a release overhead belly to belly throw. once again Thatcher targets the arm to cut off Cobb. Big boot to the shoulder drives Cobb back into the corner, now a series of forearm shots by Thatcher. Walks Cobb back to center ring, European uppercut by Thatcher, who goes to gut wrench Cobb but Cobb able to block. Thatcher with another knee to the solar plexus instead, gestures at Cobb as the fans boo. Cobb on his side on the mat as Thatcher drives a knee into the back. Thatcher grabs Cobb's left wrist and delivers a stomp that drives the wrist down against the mat. Boot choke by Thatcher as Cobb reels back between the middle and bottom ropes. Cobb back to his feet and trying to fire back again with a flurry of strikes, punctuated by an overhand right that floors the champion. Cobb also on all fours. After a few seconds with both men down, Cobb over for the pin, and Thatcher gets a shoulder up at two. Cobb with a nasty sounding forearm to the sternum of Thatcher then an overhand chop to the chest. Cobb connects on a deadlift gut wrench suplex, and both now are down again. Cobb turns Thatcher so his back is down, covers but only gets one. Both men trading forearm shots at center ring while kneeling. Cobb with an overhand chop, and now we're trading slaps. Thatcher with a couple of forearms, grabs the left arm, armdrag and twist snaps Cobb down to the mat. Cover gets two. Now Thatcher gets mount, hits a couple of strikes and transitions into the armbar. Cobb twisting and turning to try and reach the ropes. Thatcher instead brings Cobb back standing, hooking both arms. He can't hoist Cobb, so he hits another knee to the gut. Thatcher again butterflies both arms, Cobb counters into a delayed backdrop and lands on top for a two count. Thatcher rolls through, keeps both arms hooked and finally hits a double underhook suplex for a two count. Thatcher brings Cobb back to his feet and hits a couple of forearm uppercuts. Cobb challenging Thatcher to hit him again, ducks it and hits a release German. Thatcher up and wobbly... Cobb with a high angle back suplex, then a standing moonsault! He goes for another, Thatcher avoids it and hooks a Fujiwara armbar. Cobb floats over to escape, and hits a dead lift gutwrench suplex. Cobb rolls through, still has Thatcher hooked, but can't hit another suplex, instead Thatcher drags him down into the Fujiwara armbar. Cobb trying to alleviate the pressure, both men back to standing, Cobb with a German suplex into a bridge... Thatcher rolls through at two and goes again for the armbar. He hooks both of Cobb's arms, rolls Cobb over onto his shoulders and gets the three count.
WIN: Timothy Thatcher
A Hero's Exit
Chris Hero vs. Zack Sabre, Jr.
Hero wearing his New York Knicks finery for his final EVOLVE appearance and does another victory lap around the ringside area on his entrance.
Both men just staying in their corners sizing up the other after the bell rings. Finally they move in. Sabre goes flying, trying to hook Hero in a triangle choke, then an armbar. Hero gets to the ropes and powders out to the floor. Sabre follows, hits a couple of big European uppercuts but Hero drops him with a palm strike. Hero with a chop out on the floor, Sabre answering with more European uppercuts, but Hero answers with a short jab that brings Sabre down to his knees. Hero back into the ring and kips up at center ring. Hero goes for a dive, Sabre moves, Hero saw it coming and does a hand stand off the apron to land on his feet. Sabre leaps at Hero, trying to ensnare him in a submission. Hero has Sabre draped across his back and flings himself into the ringside chairs. Sabre takes the brunt of the imnpact and chairs and a fan scatter like bowling pins. Sabre back up and he answers with a couple of running European uppercuts. Hero backpedals, Sabre with another running uppercut. Sabre backs up and hits a fourth one as the battle continues throughout the ringside area. Another running European uppercut by Sabre, after Hero ducked the initial charge. Finally Hero rolls back into the ring. Hero side steps another charging European uppercut and catches Sabre with a running big boot in the corner. Release suplex by Hero gets a two count and now Hero working over Sabre with a running facewash kick in the corner, then a chop, fends off a couple of European uppercuts by Sabre and answers with a leaping knee strike. Pin attempt gets a one count. Hero dragging Sabre back to center ring, tying up the legs of the Brit. Hero reaches forward for a chin lock, then goes for a neck crank, before releasing the legs and hitting a measured knee drop to the side of the head of Sabre. Lenny Leonard going through some of the many accomplishments of Hero while he has control but that ends when Sabre avoids a senton by Hero and goes for an armbar. Hero is able to escape and hits a senton on the second attempt, and Sabre rolls to the floor seeking a breather. Hero gets Sabre up and hits a driving headbutt right to the jaw of Sabre. Another senton by Hero, this time out on the floor. Big boot by Hero out on the floor. Very hard hitting match by the departing Hero so far... Sabre claws his way up to the apron and Hero delivers a running bicycle kick that sends Sabre sprawling again. Sabre down for several seconds, works his way back up to the apron again, and again Hero kicks him off. Yet again Sabre to the apron... Hero greets him with a slap and a few clubbing forearms across the back, then a forearm to the head. Hero goes for another running boot, this time Sabre is able to get in the ring, counters with a trip and goes for a bridging pin that gets two. Sabre follows him with a crucifix bomb, into a penalty kick! Sabre blocks another Hero strike with an upkick to the wrist, goes to follow up on the left wrist, Hero blocks and connects on another senton. Hero sends Sabre into the near corner, Sabre scales up the ropes, turns and hooks Hero for a DDT. Back to standing, and Sabre catches Hero with a charging European uppercut in the corner. Hero blocks the follow, sets Sabre on the top turnbuckle, palm strike... then a running big boot. Now Hero scaling the corner ropes... he hooks Sabre's head, possibly looking for a piledriver or a powerbomb. Sabre gets free, series of slaps by Hero, then a forearm. Hero with a running palm strike in response! Hero scales the ropes again, and Sabre hooks an octopus while still standing on the top. Sabre relkeases, works down, goes to hook Hero for a powerbomb, then kicks out the legs of Hero. Sabre with another penalty kick, but before he can follow Hero springs to his feet and unloads with the roaring elbow! Great close-up sees a glassy-eyed Sabre, who swings at air before collapsing back to the canvas. Both men down, with Sabre dazed and Hero favoring that left ankle. Hero uncorks another forearm that lands with a very nasty sounding impact. And another! Sabre is slumped in the corner. Big boot to the head. Sabre drops to one knee, needing the ropes to hold himself up. Hero goes for the ripcord elbow, Sabre blocks and goes for a backslide. Hero with a shining wizard... hooks both legs on the pin attempt... only a two count! Referee checking on Sabre who indicates he wants to continue, and so continue we do... Hero muscles Sabre into the corner. Chop by Hero, Sabre answers with some forearms that Hero smiles through. Sabre with a slap, and Hero slaps Sabre down to the mat. Hero goes for a tombstone, Sabre counters in a bridging pin. Hero goes for the tombstone again and hits it! Cover only gets two! Hero looking to finish Sabre, who again counters into a pinning predicament. Hero kicks out, to his feet, delivers a roaring elbow to the back of the head of a seated Sabre... but again Sabre kicks out! Hero just stands there, measuring Sabre, incredulous at Sabre escaping time after time. Now Hero positioning Sabre for the Gotch piledriver. No! It's a Pedigree! And he hits it. Sabre kicks out at one, springs to his feet and hits a rapid-fire series of forearms. Hero answers with a big boot, then a Gotch piledriver... rolls to his feet... a second, leaping piledriver! Sabre is in a heap on the mat, Hero signals "one more time" to the fans... back to his feet... another Gotch piledriver but Sabre counters into a guillotine choke, rolls through to the arm. Sabre has both arms hooked, bending Hero in knots! Now Sabre also hooks Hero's right leg in a stump puller with the double armbar and Hero verbally submits!
WIN: Zack Sabre, Jr.
After the match, both Sabre and Hero end up seated in one corner. "Thank you Hero!" chant by the fans...
A long segment with several individuals getting the mic. First, Hero thanks the fans and puts over all the battles with Sabre, saying that he needs the next shot at Thatcher and the EVOLVE Title. Now ACH is out. He talks about beating Yehi, a double champion in WWN, and argues he deserves a title shot. Stokely Hathaway is next out. He holds a mock conference with the title belt and says none of them will get a shot, but that changes when Thatcher himself comes out, silent, points at Sabre, and then leaves without a word. Sabre tells ACH he will give him the first shot at the title after beating Thatcher. Sabre puts over the rivalry with Thatcher and they embrace. The locker room empties and lines up in the entrance aisle. Hero, now alone in the ring, talks about getting released by WWE the first time in November of 2013 and resolving to "kick the shit out of the independent circuit." He talks about his detractors and the people who think he's a "big fat ass." He notes that for all his critics, there are "a hell of a lot more people that do want to see me." He talks about returning to WWE and getting a second chance, praising the fans and all his opponents during this second run through the indies for helping him get that second chance. Hero proceeds to start making his way around the crowd, thanking and hugging fans, with no commentary. He then makes his way up the aisle handing out hugs to various members of the roster.
My Thoughts: Significantly better show than last night's EVOLVE event. Hero-Sabre, Yehi-ACH, Riddle-DUSTIN and the opening six man are all worth seeking out, and everything on the card ranged from good to great.
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