By Bryan Alvarez
Opener was supposed to be Max vs. Jeremy Buck in a battle of Generation Me but they came out and said they weren't wrestling each other. Excalibur, the MC and voice of PWG, tried to force them to do it, but they just double superkicked the ref. So the Cutler Brothers ran out and it turned into an impromptu tag match. I can only presume that means the Bucks are working the PPV Sunday. This also explains a tournament with nine first-round matches. Generation Me are far more entertaining as heels than they are as babyfaces in TNA. Cutlers made a comeback, they traded about six million nearfalls, then the Cutlers got the win with a combo stuff piledriver. All-action opener that the fans loved.
Brandon Gatson beat Ryan Taylor. Gatson was a gymnast and dancer (Google him) and his brother was an Olympian, so he's far more agile than you'd think looking at him. The highlight of this match was when Ryan put him in a wacky lucha hold and the people chanted "UFC!" Gatson did a roundoff into a Stinger splash and a DVD variation for the pin.
Joey Ryan beat Chuck Taylor in a good match. I don't know if it was an inside joke or not but there were tons of WWE spots in this match, including Bob Backlund's crossface chicken wing (Taylor was watching Best of Raw), Gail Kim's finisher, Austin's finisher, and Shawn Michaels' finisher to name a few. Ryan used a second superkick for the pin.
Roderick Strong beat Paul London. The first ten minutes of this match was built around the fact that London had stuffed his trunks to a ridiculous degree, like there was a good-sized water bottle in there. Lots of penis-related comedy and chants. When they actually got to wrestling it was very good, probably the best wrestling match on the show thus far. Lots of great stuff at the finish, then Roddy hit his stomach breaker and running sliding dropkick for the pin. I would be remiss if I didn't mention that London has a new manager, a man in an owl costume. He called him Finnegan the Space Owl. There is a photo on my Twitter.
Claudio Castagnoli beat Ricochet. This was the PWG version of Batista vs. Rey Jr. Aside from one spot near the finish where it appeared both guys forgot what spot was next, it was a fantastic big man vs. little man match, and it was by far my favorite thing on the show. Claudio is astounding and it was s star-making performance for Ricochet in front of this crowd, as it was his first time here and when it was over they chanted "THAT WAS AWESOME!" and "PLEASE COME BACK!" Claudio tapped him out after a super European uppercut. This was worth the DVD price.
Austin Aries beat Rocky Romero. Very good match. They traded a bunch of submissions at the finish, including an armbar and a triangle by Romero, but Aries powerbombed his way free and then hit the soccer kick to the face and the brainbuster for the pin. Romero got a good ovation leaving.
Brandon Bonham beat Brian Cage. Cage, the former Brian Logan, is currently in WWE developmental. They worked really hard but the crowd was more into finding creative ways to entertain themselves, like chanting "NXT DIVA~!" They did a million nearfalls, then Bonham hit him with a Canadian destroyer and Cage kicked out. He had officially kicked out of everything, so Bonham had to hit him with a second Canadian destroyer for the pin.
Akira Tozawa beat El Generico. Generico has an injured shoulder and is really hurting but it wasn't evident much in this match. They had a pretty damn great match marred by whatever it was that happened at the finish. Tozawa hit his delayed German suplex and Generico didn't appear to kick out, but the ref held up his count anyway. The fans started booing. Tozawa then trapped his arms and hit a second German for the pin, but the fans were too busy chanting "YOU FUCKED UP!" at the ref to pop for the finish. It was sad because they'd had a hell of a match up to that point.
Chris Hero beat Chris Daniels. Very good main event. They did a lot of technical wrestling early, then Daniels turned on him and worked the entire match as a heel. Hero made a comeback, they traded a bunch of nearfalls, and Hero finally did a switch into a stretch plum for the submission. Daniels turned back babyface afterwards, putting Hero over and saying if he was going to root for someone in the tourney it would be someone that was good enough to tap him out. Hero did a promo saying the last time he was in a BOLA he went to the finals and lost to Low-Ki, and while he couldn't do that match again he could return, beat three men tomorrow, and win the whole thing.