Moments Ago: The Chikara Invasion is ON!!!!

Moments Ago: The Chikara Invasion is ON!!!!

This Friday and Saturday, Ring of Honor returns to the Midwest with a couple of absolutely stacked shows. The main events are Morishima taking on the challenges of Austin Aries on Friday and Shingo on Saturday. It is also the final weekend for Colt Cabana in Ring of Honor as he teams with Homicide to take on Adam Pearce and Brent Albright on Friday and faces Adam Pearce in his final Ring of Honor match on Saturday. You will be able to see all of my thoughts on these events in Pulse Glazer’s “A Modest Response.”

My column however will be focused on some long awaited, in some cases, debuts to the Ring of Honor roster. Four of the top wrestlers from the comedic, but top notch Lucha Libre influenced Chikara. Hallowicked, Jigsaw, Gran Akuma, and Mike Quackenbush will all show their faces, or in some cases, masks to the Ring of Honor fans in a Ring of Honor ring for the first time.

Moments Ago this week will look at these athletes and give a brief primer of what to expect from these four athletes.

Logic would indicate that Mike Quackenbush would be logical place to start, but I am going to hold off on the founder of Chikara and focus on some of the others who indy wrestling fans may not be familiar with.

Jigsaw: The first of the Chikara boys I will be discussing is the Wrestling Riddle known as Jigsaw. He is a tall, lanky fellow and, like many of the Chikara gang, competes under a hood. I saw him wrestle Hallowicked a few years back and his style is heavily lucha influenced. He mixes in his fair share of Japanese junior heavyweight style as well. Some of his more notable spots include a mat leaping Super Frankensteiner, and his finish which he refers to as the “Jig’n’tonic” which is a version of the axe guillotine driver (basically a reverse pile driver), Matt Sydal has used a similar maneuver in some of his RoH matches.

Jigsaw could fit into the tag ranks quite nicely with Mike Quackenbush or one of the other regular members of the RoH roster. He could also be a member of Jack Evans’ new group should they start that ball rolling soon.

Hallowicked: Many refer to this Dark Minion of the Underworld as the top graduate of the Chikara Wrestle Factory, and there aren’t many who would disagree. His mask is that of a black Jack’o’lantern with green embellishments including a stem. He spent the majority of his Chikara run as a rudo only recently joining the technico side of the fence and aligning himself with Ring of Honor favorite Delirious to form the team Incoherence. Much like Delirious, Hallowicked is nigh unintelligible with his rants. His offense is largely based in the world of lucha libre. He uses a maneuver called the Graveyard Smash to finish off his opponents. The Smash is basically a sit out fisherman’s buster.

I would love to see Incoherence join up in RoH and challenge for the Tag Straps, or perhaps ‘Wicked could join Delirious in his fight against the No Remorse Corps.

Gran Akuma: One of the greatest traditions in the world of Lucha Libre is of course the mask, and a standard end to many a blood feud is a mask vs. mask match. Gran Akuma, the Mythological Warrior from afar, lost such a match to Shane Storm, another top Chikara athlete. The loss of the mask brought about a slight change in Akuma’s overall attitude and style in the ring. His style was more high flying and aerial in nature while still under his blue hood. Since losing the mask he has added more strikes and stiff kicks to his arsenal, which should please the RoH faithful. Akuma could fit in nicely with the No Remorse Corps should they decide to use him in that respect. He has the silent assassin aura about him and would round out the group nicely.

Akuma is currently half of of the Campeonatos de Parejas, Chikara’s version of the tag team championship, with his partner Icarus forming Team F.I.S.T. Akuma and Icarus have history with RoH regulars Chris Hero and Claudio Castagnoli and are an awesome team in their own right. If Akuma makes a big enough splash his partner Icarus may not be far behind. The best way to describe their team is a more lucha heavy and less polished version of KENTA and Marufugi, so they would not have a hard time getting over with the RoH crowd.

Mike Quackenbush: The most anticipated of all of these debuts is “Lightning” Mike Quackenbush. Rumors circulated that Quack, as he is affectionately called, was supposed to appear on the first Ring of Honor shows, but for one reason or another, he did not. Quackenbush is easily the best American Independent wrestler to not yet appear in RoH. He is an expert at all styles of wrestling and if you look around on the internet you can see amazing matches the Quack has had with RoH standouts like Claudio Castagnoli, Chris Hero, and Bryan Danielson.

The “Man of 1000 Holds” moniker has been applied to many wrestlers. Not since Dean Malenko has it been such an apt description of a wrestler. Quack will instantly endear himself to the Ring of Honor fans that are unfamiliar work, and make the fans that have seen him before which he had been in RoH all along. Depending on how often he is willing to work for Ring of Honor, Mike Quackenbush could easily make the biggest impact of these four.

This weekend the Chikara gang will all be competing together in a couple of RoH signature matches. On Friday in St. Paul, MN, they will be competing in an Ultimate Endurance Match for the Ring of Honor tag team championship. Gran Akuma will team with Hallowicked as they face the teams of Jigsaw and Mike Quackenbush, Mitch Franklin and Pelle Primeau, and of course the RoH tag team champions the Briscoes. The first fall is a tap out match which gives Quackenbush the advantage. The second fall is a scramble match which benefits the Lucha Libre influenced Chikara wrestlers, but it is the third fall where the Chikara boys will succumb to the dominant Briscoes. Either way, this match will allow all of these wrestlers to shine.

On Saturday night, it is truly a Chikara Showcase. The four wrestlers will compete in a six man mayhem match that will also feature Delirious and Pelle Primeau. This match will be worth it if only for the interaction between Hallowicked and Delirious, and could steal the show.

These four men are some of the most exciting east coast wrestlers not currently in Ring of Honor, which has me thinking, for an East Coast company, Ring of Honor has been using less and less “local talent” over the years, but that is a topic for another edition of Moments Ago. Yet I digress, stay tuned to the Pulse tomorrow for my Big Andy Pinions about this weekend’s shows.

I’ll see you next time

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