Hello everyone! As always, I’m KOSS, and I’m glad to be back for another PWG review! Today’s show is Neon Knights, which took place in February. This show has some really interesting matchups, a few debuts, a return, and more! I’m really excited to get into this, so let’s go!
Match #1: Adam Brooks vs. Brody King
Brooks really impressed me in his debut weekend with PWG, at All Star Weekend 13. His matches with Mark Haskins and Jonah Rock were both really enjoyable, and Brooks was a really fun cocky heel. His opponent today is Brody King, who was a last minute replacement for Matt Sydal. I can’t complain, as Sydal tends to underwhelm in singles matches. I’m excited to see what King brings here. The show immediately starts with Brody’s Gonna Kill You chants, so it’s nice that the crowd already took to the SoCal Native. Brody King looks like a larger Aleister Black. When he’s announced from Van Nuys, California, it gets a big pop. I can absolutely buy Brody weighing in at 285, he’s a big dude. Brooks is showing his athleticism with rollups to start. Brooks with a snapmare and a one legged dropkick. Brody hits a huge overhead chop! BRODY JUST HIT A CRAZY LUCHA ARMDRAG!!!! WOW! BRODY HITS A HUGE TOPE CON HILO!! Back in the ring, Brody is punishing Brooks with chops. His chest already looks beet-red, oof. Excalibur compares King to Joey Janela, as another guy who would do anything to get an advantage. Brooks goes for a Lowpe Suicida, but Brody catches Brooks into a Apron Uranage! King now working the reverse chinlock. Brooks hits a Bicycle Knee and a Reverse Rana! They make their way to the Apron. Brooks hits a top rope Meteora on the Apron! Fosbury Flop by Brooks! Brooks hits a Shotgun Dropkick, but Brody shoots out of the corner with a huge Lariat! Brooks hits a massive corner dropkick followed by a top rope Codebreaker! There’s some communication issues where Brody is too far away for Brooks to hit his move, lol. I think that was a botched Top Rope DDT. Brody hits a Corkscrew Senton off the top rope! Brooks hits the Canadian Destroyer! Swanton Bomb gets the pin!
That was a totally solid, fun match! There were some blatant communication issues, and Brody took his time on some of the more advanced moves, but hey, what can you do. Brody’s really impressive, and I think that with more time in PWG and other places, he’d only get better. And Brooks was once again really fun here. Good way to start the show!
My rating: ***
Match #2: ROH World Champion Dalton Castle vs. Joey Janela
THE PARTY PEACOCK IS BACK!!! This is Dalton’s first appearance in PWG since the third night of the 2016 Battle of Los Angeles, and I’m glad to see him back. PWG lets people do a lot of character work, and sometimes it’s awesome (like with Chuck Talyor and Joey Janela), and sometimes not (Marty Scurll). I expect this to have some fun comedy, especially with a personality with Janela. This should be fun! Joey is weirding out during his intro and it’s awesome. Excalibur calls Joey Janela unorthodox. Yup, that’s a good way to describe it. The crowd is loving the Peacock! Dalton goes for a quick pin, but opts to give Joey a raspberry, lol! Joey does not look pleased. Joey says no raspberries. He says only strawberries, dipped in chocolate, with a nice honey to look at, which causes Excalibur to uncontrollably laugh! Now we’re getting some really nice grappling. Dalton is such a good character, that you forget he’s a fantastic grappler. I’d love to see him wrestle Zack Sabre, Jr. Dalton does his pose, causing Joey to fly over the top rope and into a fan’s lap! Lmao! Joey wants a handshake from Dalton. Dalton gives him one, but Janela knees him in the gut! What a bad boy! Joey is cowering in fear of right hands, but Janela pokes Castle in the eyes! Joey grounds Castle, runs the ropes…...and another eye poke! After an extended comedy sequence, Castle goes ham on Janela, hitting a big suplex! Dalton with a huge knee strike! Dalton takes Joey down and hits a barrage of forearms! Dalton looked like hit hit his head pretty bad on the middle turnbuckle. JOEY HIT THE SWANTON FROM THE TOP ROPE TO THE FLOOR!! Dalton catches Joey off the top rope into a suplex! Joey hits a German Suplex into a Superkick! Joey hits a top rope Hurricanrana, and locks in a Figure Four! Dalton gets Joey into the corner, and hits a barrage of Knees! This match certainly feels like it’s long. Dalton hits the Apron Deadlift German! Joey hits the Package Piledriver, but Dalton kicks out! Dalton hits the Bang-A-Rang and gets the three.
Unlike a lot of matches, I thought the comedy in this was pretty good. Their personalities meshed really well, and the comedy was actually funny. Unfortunately, the wrestling wasn’t up to par. It just felt kind of slow, and the match went much too long. It wasn’t actively bad, but it had a hard time keeping my interest.
My rating: ***
Match #3: David Starr vs. Travis Banks:
This will be fun! Banks and Starr have wrestled a few times before, and they’ve always been good. This is Banks’ first time back in PWG since BOLA, and I’m glad to see him back. LOL, the ring announcer calls David just the Product, leading to the crowd chanting You Fucked Up, and David grabs the mic to give ALL his nicknames. If you want to see what they are, read my Mystery Vortex V review, because I don’t want to type them all again. Banks attacks out of the gate with a lariat and a running kick! Banks hits a trio of Tope Suicidas! Banks brings an intensity to his matches that I really really like. Starr drops Banks on the apron back first, and hits a running pescado! The two are now fighting outside the ring. Banks hits a Corner Senton! Banks hits a NASTY Shotgun Dropkick, and a double foot stomp! Starr hits a Powerbomb onto the knees, and then a Knee Brainbuster! They’re trading strikes! Banks is punishing Starr with kicks! Banks goes for a Suicide Dive, Banks counters into a DDT! Starr hits a huge Lariat! This match is great! Banks hits the Kiwi Crusher, but Starr kicks out! Banks locks in the GargaNo Escape! Starr gets out! Banks hits an Avalanche Kiwi Crusher and gets the pin!
That was AWESOME! That was a short match, but they went crazy and never slowed down for a second! Starr and Banks have wicked chemistry, and this was a far cry from Starr’s debut at Mystery Vortex V. Great stuff!
My rating: ***¾
Match #4: Zack Sabre, Jr. vs. Flip Gordon
Zack is one of my favorite wrestlers in the world right now, so I’m always happy to see him on a PWG show. And Flip is a rising independent star, thanks to Being The Elite. I never cared for it, but I always enjoyed Flip’s matches in ROH. He had an incredible match with Will Ospreay at the Chicago Stop of the War of the Worlds tour. Zack can work with any style, and his match with REY FENIX at BOLA proved he can work a High Flyer just as well as a Brawler, a Powerhouse, or another technical wrestler. Flip gets a FLAT EARTH chant, lol. Flip tries to take Zack to the ground, because he’s dumb. Flip is doing Kip-Ups while flipping off ZSJ, haha! Flip gets Zack outside and hits a Moonsault! Zack counters a Snapmare into one of his own! That was neat. Zack is starting to work on the knees of Flip. Zack gets Flip tied into some kind of WILD submission, but Flip counters it into a rollup. Zack immediately goes back to the knees. Zack rolls a Tornado DDT into a Guillotine choke! Flip hitting Zack with chops! Zack with an Abdominal Stretch! Flip hits a Springboard Sling Blade! Flip goes up top, but Zack kicks him in the leg as he goes up. Flip flips out, and kicks Zack’s knee, and hit a dropkick! Zack counters out of the Fireman’s Carry into a Choke, BUT FLIP COUNTERS IT INTO A FALCON ARROW!!! HE DID THE DEAL!!!! ZACK SOMEHOW MANAGED TO KICK OUT!! Zack counters a Pele Kick into an STF! Zack gets an Ankle Lock! Flip goes for a Standing Shooting Star, but Zack counters into a Triangle Choke! Flip gets the 450! Zack kicks out! Zack counters a Springboard Stunner into Orienteering with Napalm Death! Flip Taps!
That was really good! As always, their styles meshed well. Flip did pretty good in his PWG debut, and Zack was Zack. Another solid match!
My rating: ***½
PWG Tag Team Champion Matt Riddle vs. Keith Lee
This match had insane buzz coming out of this show. Some were calling it one of the best PWG matches ever. I’m hype. Let’s get right in. Riddle tries for a Guillotine but Lee shrugs Riddle off. Riddle gets Lee into the corner and starts hitting big strikes. KEITH LEE JUST HIT THE MOST INSANE POUNCE IN WRESTLING HISTORY.
Lee flattens Riddle with a forearm. Keith stands on the chest of Riddle, with BOTH Feet. Brutal. Lee is KILLING Riddle with strikes and chops. Riddle fighting back with strikes but Lee stops it with another forearm. Riddle hits a Wrist Clutch Bicycle Knee! RIDDLE GETS LEE UP FOR A FISHERMAN BUSTER!!! These two are WAILING on each other, I love it. Lee counters a Bicycle Knee into an overhead suplex! Riddle hits a German! They’re killing each other with strikes and chops!!! THIS! IS! SERIOUS! RIDDLE GETS KEITH LEE UP FOR TO THE BRO TO SLEEP!!! HE HITS IT!! GERMAN SUPLEX!! LEE KICKS OUT! RIDDLE HITS LEE WITH A TOMBSTONE!! OH MY GOD!! Lee FLATTENS Riddle with a Lariat! KEITH LEE HITS A MIDDLE ROPE MOONSAULT!!! RIDDLE KICKS OUT AT ONE!!! RIDDLE KICKS OUT OF THE SPIRIT BOMB!!! Keith going up top for a Moonsault, but Riddle hits a powerbomb, and then a huge knee! Riddle is abusing Lee on the ground with kicks! Lee counters a knee into Ground Zero! RIDDLE KICKS OUT OF GROUND ZERO!!!!! Lee gets Riddle to the top rope. Riddle pushes Lee off! Riddle hits a Top Rope Bro-ton! Riddle goes back up top and hits another one! LEE KICKS OUT AT ONE!! Lee hits a flurry of strikes! Spirit Bomb! Ground Zero! Keith Lee wins!!
WOW. That was excellent. That felt like the kind of match you’d see in New Japan. That was super physical, and they went balls to the wall. I loved that match.
My rating: ****½
PWG World Title
Chuck Taylor ©
Now that Trent is heavyweight, he got announced as weighing in at many, many pounds. LOL! This is the match unfortunately where Trent got badly injured, tearing multiple muscles. It’s a shame, Trent is one of the most underrated guys in wrestling. Chuck has Trent’s jacket, but Chuck just throws it on the ground. Chuck is showing some subtly heel tendencies. Trent takes Chuck down with a shoulder block but helps him back up, because that’s what best friends do. Chuck offers Trent a hand, but locks him in an armbar. WE GET A HUG FROM THE BEST FRIENDS!!! TRENT GOES FOR A ROLLUP AFTER!! They’re shoving each other!! Chuck cheap shots Trent in the corner. Trent hits a big running knee! This is very slow so far, but it’s not a bad slow, I’m really enjoying it thus far. Excalibur mentions that these guys have stood on the apron, watching each other wrestle for years, so they know everything about the other, and the winner will be the one that can hit and unexpected move. Trent hits the sliding german suplex! Trent hits his shoulder on the ring post, and goes out of the ring. Chuck throws a chair at Trent! Chuck takes Trent to the announce table, and he begins to set up the Chair structure. I never like when that happens, it takes far too long to make, grinding the flow of the match to a halt, and the bump never looks too good. Chuck grabs a headset. He says is gonna hurt Greg, and kill his best friend, and then hits the Brainbuster through the chairs! Trent looks like he’s in a LOT of pain, I’m pretty sure he’s injured at this point. Trent hits an Apron Piledriver!! Yup, Trent is absolutely injured at this point, I can tell by the way he is holding his left arm. A second Apron Piledriver by Trent! The crowd’s pretty quiet for this match. Trent tries to go for a third one, but Chuck counters and hits a Piledriver on a chair! The crowd is dead for this match. They were trading shots, but they hug! Trent is busted open above the left eye! Chuck is targeting Trent’s eye with boots and strikes. Trent is fighting back! There’s nothing wrong with this match per se, but the pace is super slow, and the crowd is totally dead. Chuck goes for Awful Waffle, but Trent counters into Crunchy! Trent can’t get the pin! Chuck sneaks a belt shot on Trent! Rick Knox didn’t see it! Trent kicks out of two piledrivers! Trent hits a second Crunchy, but Chuck kicks out again! Trent picks the belt up, and is about to hit Chuck, but he stops at the last second. He gives the belt to Rick Knox, and while Knox is turned around, CHUCK LOW BLOWS TRENT AND ROLLS HIM UP FOR THE WIN!
I can tell that Trent’s biceps injury really messed him up. The slow pace at the start was really fun as a feeling out process, but unfortunately, the chair structure spot and Trent’s injury, plus the dead crowd, derailed this one a lot. I wanted to like this one, but it was not very good.
My rating: **¾
And that’s Neon Knights! This was a middle of the road show, if slightly above average. The only thing I’d say was outright not good was the main event, and it’s not like that was a total trainwreck, it was just slow. Trent’s injury was super unfortunate for that one. Besides that, Lee/Riddle was the far away MOTN, and Starr/Banks was really fun too, as well as Flip/ZSJ. Would I recommend this show? Eh…...I guess. This isn’t a show that’s essential viewing, but it’s a nice, compact, 6 match card with some fun debuts and a FANTASTIC Riddle/Lee match.
Overall show rating: 7.25/10
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