IWA Mid-South ran night one of the annual Ted Petty Invitational 24 man tournament at Preson Recreation Center in Midlothian, Illinois.
Changes in the originally announced field have taken some of the luster off this year’s tournament. The promised Samoa Joe/Low Ki opening round match was dropped because IWA Mid-South owner Ian Rotten couldn’t come up with the money he owed TNA. That problem also cost them the services of Alex Shelley. Matt Sydal signed with WWE. B-Boy and El Generico cancelled out due to injuries. Jimmy Rave was added and subsequently dropped from the lineup.
Some fans compared this year’s TPI to 2005 in that more of the load would have to be carried by the regular IWA Mid-South crew.
Night One Results – 9/28/07
Still, the first night was anything but a disappointment. The crowd of 250 was psyched. There were several outstanding opening round matches, and the angles got over strong.
The show opened with the introduction of all 24 competitors. Chris Hero got a very loud and very mixed response. Jimmy Jacobs got significant hate. The biggest pops were for Mike Quackenbush, Scorpio, Eddie Kingston, Human Tornado and Chuck Taylor. B. J. Whitmer attacked Jacobs after the intros. Chuck Taylor went after Whitmer and joined forces with Jacobs. But not for long. Taylor laid Jacobs out with the Omega Driver. Jacobs said he was known for beating the odds. He said Taylor was a 2005 version of himself and he knew it.
(1) Josh Abercrombie beat Ricochet via submission in 8:27. A nice way to ease into the tournament. Ricochet replaced Jimmy Rave. A fan had constructed a giant fake mustache in Abercrombie’s honor. This thing was like 6 feet wide. Abercrombie worked on the neck. Ricochet made an aerial comeback highlighted by a wild flip dive and shoulder-mounted double kneedrop for a big near fall. Abercrombie hit the Taliban Backpack and got the tap out with a variation on the crossface chickenwing. Crowd liked the finish.
(2) Joker beat C. J. Otis (with Joey Eastman) in 5:05. Joker ended up in the tournament after losing a qualifying match. Eastman said this would be his last appearance in IWA Mid-South. No tears were shed. More intense than the first match. In a pure Japanese style spot, Otis bounced right up after taking a German suplex and nailed Joker with a lariat. Joker didn’t sell a german by Otis either, and pinned him with a Whiplash Powerbomb. Eastman wasn’t happy with Otis for shaking hands.
(3) Human Tornado beat Eddie Kingston in 9:14. A meeting of two very entertaining characters. Tornado outquicked Kingston. He gave Eddie the House Party (corner kicks to a seated Kingston finishing with a splits low blow). Kingston went to work on Tornado’s back. Tornado did springboard missile dropkick. Tornado flying stuff was looking good. Kingston got big near falls with a uranage and decapitation lariat. But Kingston missed with a spinning backfist and Tornado pinned him with Dat Nigga Dead. A lot of fans were was pulling for Kingston to advance. Major show of respect in the postmatch. Crowd really liked this match. So did I.
Chris Hero came out and called Kingston a loser. Kingston hopped the rail but couldn’t get to Hero. Kingston said he had enough of the politics in Chikara and CZW. He said he wanted the bitch on night two after he lost to Scorpio. Rotten told Kingston if he interfered in the match, he would be gone from IWA Mid-South for a full year.
(4) Davey Richards beat B. J. Whitmer via submission at 14:14 with the Keylock Clutch. Excellent match.This felt like serious business. They matched up dead even in agility and power. Richards strikes were wicked stiff. Whitmer did some nice work on Richards’ back. A dangerous spot saw both men spill over the top on a vertical suplex. Richards sent Whitmer through the ropes with a missile dropkick to the back and followed up with flip tope. Richards went for the keylock, but Whitmer got a ropes break. Whitmer stormed back with a brainbuster and a frogsplash. Richards did a sunset powerbomb and caved Whitmer’s chest in with a kick. Whitmer kicked out. Whitmer got a near fall with a jackknife powerbomb. Richard hit a Saito suplex and locked in the submission. To this point, each match was better than the one before.
(5) Devin Moore pinned Dysfunction in 5:05 with a Shooting Star Press. They worked a fast pace but were nowhere close to as crisp as the previous match. Moore kicked out of everything Dys could throw at him and got the pin with a Shooting Star Press.
After intermission, Jason Duke got in the ring and said since he beat Billy Kidman in NWA Midwest, Ian Rotten should give him a bye into the second round. Rotten said the only “biÃ¢â‚¬Â Duke would be getting was from Ed Chuman. Rotten had Duke arrested by security. Rotten then wiped his ass with the Duke’s NWA Midwest X Division belt and told him he could have it back when he bailed out. Rotten said he could get 2500 for it from Chuman because he was a belt mark.
(6) Mike Quackenbush beat Billy Roc via submission at 11:54 to retain the NWA World Lightweight Title. No doubt Quack is a sentimental favorite in the tournament. Roc was holding his own against the champ’s technical skills early. Quackenbush began to dominate with lucha style and tortured Roc with submissions. Roc got a comeback series of near falls including a flip piledriver out of nowhere. Quack cut him off with a palm strike and hit a brainbuster. Roc got a near fall with a Shiranui. Quackenbush then submitted Roc with the Lightning Lock.
(7) Brent Albright beat Tank via submission in 5:05. Tank attacked Albright in the aisle but messed his ankle up in the process. They just blasted the hell out of each other in this match. Albright gave Tank a german suplex with no help from Tank. Albright blocked the chokebreaker and go for the Crowbar. Tank escaped and Albright switched to a cross armbreaker to get the win. Nice finish.
(8) Joey Ryan beat Brandon Thomaselli in 9:55. Ryan refused to shake hands. Ryan came out on top on a furious exchange of armdrags that got a big pop. Thomaselli worked on Ryan’s back. A big spot saw Ryan spear Thomaselli of the apron. Unfortunately, Ryan’s superkick wasn’t much compared to the near falls that preceded it, which resulted in the only flat finish of the night.
(9) “SpyderÃ¢â‚¬Â Nate Webb beat Drake Younger in 8:55. The IWA fans love both of these guys. During his “Teenage Dirtbag” intro, Webb grabbed a Hershey bar from the concession stand, threw it into the crowd and told Rotten, “that’s my payday.Ã¢â‚¬Â Younger has Tommy Dreamer’s heart and is well on the way to the scarred up body of Sabu. They opened up with straight wrestling. Younger took control. At one point, he did a flapjack into a Mutalock. Both down after a flying reverse DDT by Webb. Webb busted out the Muay Thai knees. Younger hit a Liger Bomb for a near fall. Webb murdered Younger with a lariat, but he kicked out. Webb got the pinfall with a devastating top rope half nelson/hammerlock facebuster. Standing ovation.
Rotten announced that the Cubs won the division.
(10) Claudio Castagnoli beat Nigel McGuinness in 11:22. Everyone on their feet for the intros. They traded about 30 European uppercuts. McGuinness went to one knee. After 5 more, Double C went to his knee. Castagnoli launched a barrage of blows, but McGuinness smoked him with Rope Swing Lariat. Awesome sequence. Castagnoli used a 10 count giant swing. McGuinness hit the Tower of London for a near fall. McGuinness kicked out of the Alpamare Waterslide. McGuinness escaped a Ricola Bomb and leveled Castagnoli with a short-arm lariat. But Castagnoli ducked yet another Rope Swing Lariat and hit the Ricola Bomb. Best match yet. Great pop as they did a show of respect.
(11) Scorpio beat Chris Hero in 19:32. Huge babyface response for Scorpio. Hero made the ring announcer intro him as the best athlete in the tournament “white or black.Ã¢â‚¬Â Every time Hero got the advantage, he would mock Scorpio with silly, flippy routines. Scorpio taunted Hero with a cravate and they countered back and forth. After a sequence of obnoxious flips by Hero, Scorpio nailed him with a superkick. Scorpio popped the crowd with a guillotine legdrop on the apron. Hero got his knees up on Scorpio’s standing moonsault to reverse the momentum. Scorpio made an explosive comeback, hitting a middle rope somersault senton and a top rope splash for near falls. Hero took his head off with a lariat. Scorpio escaped from the Cravate Plex, but Hero coldcocked him with a head shot and did a release vertical suplex for a great near fall. Scorpio kicked out of the cravate buster. Scorpio connected with a Pele kick and got pin with the 450 splash. Big pop. Great match. Scorpio worked his ass off. The crowd broke out a bigtime “loserÃ¢â‚¬Â chant for Hero.
After the match, Hero said he might not show up for night two and was attacked by Kingston. They brawled until IWA officials ran out to separate them. Rotten made a no DQ-no count out Last Man Standing match for night two. The crowd loved this.
(12) Chuck Taylor beat Jimmy Jacobs to retain the IWA World Heavyweight Title in 21:30. A grueling match. Jacobs attacked Taylor outside the ring and gave him a backdrop into the first row. Tthey brawled through the seats. They did a spot where Jacobs jumped off a gimmick table to spear Taylor, who was hanging from the basketball stanchion. Inside the ring, it was still all Jacobs. Taylor started to fight back after a series of slaps, but Jacobs beat him down.
When Jacobs went for the Contracode, Taylor dumped him and did a psychotic dive. Taylor’s back appeared to land on the rail but he got right up. Moments later, Jacobs went head first into the rail on a crash and burn tope. Jacobs was down and bleeding from the forehead. He barely beat the 20 count. Taylor opened up the cut. Taylor went after Jacobs’ bad knee and ripped the brace off of it. Taylor put Jacobs in the figure four. They trade slaps and headbutts. Taylor calls Jacobs “Zach Gowen.Ã¢â‚¬Â Jacobs did a Nestea plunge diving headbutt. Crazy stuff. Finish saw Jacobs go for the Contra Code. Taylor distracted Bryce Remsburg, kicked Jacobs low, and hit the Awful Waffle. Great way to finish night one.
NOTES: Besides Kingston/Hero, night two has Thomaselli Brothers defending the IWA tag titles and the remainder of the TPI with second rounds matches as follows: Moore vs. Abercrombie, Tornado vs. Webb, Taylor vs. Scorpio, Albright vs. Joker, Richards vs. Castagnoli and Quackenbush vs. Ryan. The Elite Pro show will be at 1pm Saturday with a 2 hour Q & A to follow.
Night Two Results – 9/29/07
Mike Quackenbush won the 2007 Ted Petty Invitational Tournament last night in Midlothian, Illinois, as IWA Mid-South gave the fans all they could ask for at Night Two of the TPI.
High end technical wrestling is a given at TPI, but Quackenbush’s journey to the title was the most poignant story the tournament has ever told. He was nothing short of terrific in the role of the ultimate underdog babyface.
Night two drew a super appreciative crowd of 300 to the Preston Recreation Center.
(1) Josh Abercrombie beat Devin Moore in 5:11 with a variation of the crossface chickenwing to advance to the semifinals. They played off the finishes from their first round victories, which was one of the themes of the evening. Moore missed with the SSP. Abercrombie capitalized with the Taliban Backpack and locked in the submission.
(2) Brent Albright beat Joker in 10:55 to advance to the semifinals. This weekend was my first chance to see Joker live and he impressed the hell out of me. The story was Joker repeatedly besting Albright and offering to shake hands. Albright would refuse and get heat for it. Albright finally appeared to accept Joker’s offer and turned it into an exploder suplex and more heat. Joker hit an exploder of his own, and it was both men down. Albright took a risky bump from the top rope to the floor. Back inside the ring, Joker got a cross armbreaker, Albright’s finisher from night one. Albright reversed to the crowbar. Joker reversed that but Albright made the ropes. Albright finished Joker with a dragon suplex and a devastating half nelson suplex. The fans showed their appreciation for Joker’s efforts. The attitude of the fans is a big part of what make these tournaments so much fun.
(3) Human Tornado beat Nate Webb in 8:19 to advance to the semifinals. Webb cut his intro short and said he wasn’t doing a dance contest. “Don’t get in my face, sunshineÃ¢â‚¬Â said Webb. “That was the most racist s*** I ever heard,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Tornado, and it was on. The crowd popped huge when Tornado used The Pounce. Tornado creamed Webb with a flip dive into the second row, Webb came back with a wacky submission. Tornado used a Texas Cloverleaf. Webb trumped that with a figure four. Webb hit the Arachnakick for a near fall. A top rope battle ensued. Tornado slipped and pulled Webb down. It looked like a nasty bump. Tornado went to Dat Nigga Dead for the finisher. Big pop for Tornado’s win and chant of appreciation for Nate.
Webb said Tornado beat him in a match. but no way was he going to beat him in a dance off
They busted out all their moves and ended up dancing together. Very entertaining. Webb called “SunshineÃ¢â‚¬Â back out to do a promo.
(4) Mike Quackenbush beat Joey Ryan via submission in 11:44 to advance to the semifinals.Quack retained the IWA World Lightweight Title. Standing O for Quack’s entrance. Quackenbush caught his feet in the ropes on a tope and took a nosedive to the floor. The crowd was dead silent. The match continued. Quack kicked out Ryan’s superkick finisher. Lightning Lock but Ryan made the ropes.Quack kicked into high gear with top rope rana and a swanton bomb for a near fall. Ryan went for a pin using the ropes but Bryce Remsburg stopped counting at two. Quackenbush won it with Lightning Lock Beta. This crowd is nuts for Quackenbush. Quack looked a bit dazed as he headed to the back.
(5) Claudio Castagnoli beat Davey Richards in 8:50 to advance to the semifinals. Claudio was way over but in a more light-hearted way than Quack. The match was punctuated by amazing bursts of athleticism from Richards. Each one capped off with a stiff kick to the chest. Castagnoli hit the Alpamare Waterslide and the Match Killer. Richards rallied with a missile dropkick and a bridging German suplex, but Castagnoli got his knees up on Richards SSP from the heavens. Castagnoli dropped Richards on his head, blasted him with European uppercut and finished with the Ricola Bomb. Standing ovation. Best match thus far for night two.
(6) Chuck Taylor beat Scorpio in 14:10 to advance to the semifinals. Taylor retained the IWA World Heavyweight Title. After being babyface for a night against Jimmy Jacobs, Taylor was back to playing comedy heel. He reluctantly accepted Scorpio’s handshake. “There might be SARS on that glove.Ã¢â‚¬Â Clever stuff and a lot of fans are into it, but it seemed out place for the heavyweight champion in a serious tournament. The main problem was Taylor’s offense looked sloppy. Crowd went kind of dead. Taylor got his knees up on a Scorpio moonsault and gave him Soul Food. Scorpio hit the Pele and went to the top as in night one, but Taylor brought him off the top with Omega Driver. Not that great a finish and a disappointing match.
Ian Rotten put Scorpio over as one of the all-time greats. Rotten talked about how much it meant to him that Scorpio was in the tournament, being that went back to early ECW and knew Ted Petty. Rotten asked Scorpio to come back to help the young IWA guys take it to the next level. Fans chanted “Please come back.Ã¢â‚¬Â Scorpio said he would. Scorpio said IWA had most dedicated fans anywhere.
Rotten announce that Quackenbush was out of the tournament on the advice of Ed Chuman from the NWA. Abercrombie would get a bye to the finals. That really sucked the wind out going into the intermission.
(7) Claudio Castagnoli beat Brent Albright in 14:20 to advance to the finals. Strong heel/face dynamic in this one. Crowd was strong for Castagnoli, who appeared to be the top babyface left in the tournament. Albright didn’t make any friends with his bad behavior in the quarterfinal match. They opened with an intense test of strength. Each escaped the other guy’s finisher. Albright controlled with a lengthy headlock, like 7 minutes worth. Castagnoli got untracked with an 11 revolution giant swing. Albright did a victory roll. Albright countered the Ricola Bomb with an exploder suplex for a near fall. Albright got the Crowbar (Fujiwara armbar) but Castagnoli got a ropes break. Albright caught a diving Castagnoli with the Crowbar into a cross armbreaker, his first round finisher. Castagnoli made the ropes. Albright foiled another Ricola Bomb attempt with a half nelson suplex for a great near fall. Castagnoli ducked a high crossbody. Ricola Bomb! Crowd showed respect for Albright.
(8) Chuck Taylor beat Human Tornado in 12:12 to advance to the finals. Taylor retained the IWA World Heavyweight Title. Very fun match. Taylor was much better here. Tornado ran off with Taylor’s belt before the match. A kid told Taylor he screamed like a girl, which got a “you got servedÃ¢â‚¬Â chant. This was a showcase for Tornado’s acrobatics. Taylor raked Tornado something fierce. Tornado did a slingshot with a double stomp to Taylor’s head on the way to the floor. Tornado did an awesome whirling tornado DDT for a near fall. Taylor resorted to donkey kick to the groin. But Tornado did the Balls of Steel no sell and hit Dat Nigga Dead, Taylor got a foot over the ropes. Tornado tried for his finisher again, and Taylor reversed it with the Omega Driver for the pin. Taylor told the kid he was going to get a knife and repeatedly stab him in the face. Tornado got the “please come backÃ¢â‚¬Â chant.
Abercrombie entered the ring. As the forfeit was being announced, Quackenbush made his intro to a monster pop. It was one of those moments when it’s great to be a pro wrestling fan.
(9) Mike Quackenbush beat Josh Abercrombie via submission at 9:43 to advance to the finals. Quackenbush retained the IWA World Lightweight Title. Abercrombie couldn’t handle Quackenbush straight up, so he started going after his potentially concussed head. Quack started working the leg. He knocked Abercrombie off the top with a palm strike and set up for a tope. The crowd was saying no. Quackenbush did a flip dive over the top to show that he was OK. A Quackendriver II popped the crowd, but Abercrombie kicked out. Quack kicked out of the Taliban Backpack and refused to submit to the chickenwing crossface. It was a matter of when not if for Abercrombie, who tapped to inverted cloverleaf version of the Lightning Lock. Biggest pop of the night. The fans chanted “one more win.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Rotten said IWA Mid-South got kicked out of the NWA because Quackenbush went against their wishes. Rotten thanked Quack for getting him out of the contract.
(10) Eddie Kingston beat Chris Hero in a Last Man Standing Match (23:48). Sick violence. Hero bludgeoned Kingston to within an inch of his life. This match may be better on DVD because the first half was brawling through the crowd. Couldn’t see a lot but it sounded stiff. Hero was killing Kingston He kept putting Kingston down and breaking the ref’s 10 counts to dish out more punishment. Hero did a Boston crab while sitting in a chair on Kingston’s back. Kingston’s nose was busted open. Hero stomped on Kingston’s fingers until they were useless. Kingston looked a mess. An ultra sick exchange of headbutts here. Even Rotten was cringing. Kingston somehow summoned up the resources to no sell a cravate suplex, hit a dragon suplex and level Hero with a knockout lariat. At 18 minutes, Hero was finally down for a count, Hero fired chair at Kingston’s head from long distance. Bullseye. Hero hung the chair around Kingston’s neck and did the cravate buster. Kingston was up at seven. The crowd chanted “Eddie.Ã¢â‚¬Â Hero put a section of guard rail on top of Kingston and did a top rope double stomp. Kingston was up at the count of eight. Kingston connected with a spinning back fist and plunged Hero’s head into the section of guardrail with a backdrop driver. The crowd chanted “holy s***Ã¢â‚¬Â as the count reached 10. Hero got the loser chant again. But they switched to “Thank you HeroÃ¢â‚¬Â as he was being helped to the back.
(11) Iron Saints (Vito & Sal Thomaselli) vs. Nigel McGuinness & B. J. Whitmer ended as a no contest (18 minutes). McGuinness said he had no partner and decided to accept someone of questionable character rather than go without. So the story revolved around how well McGuinness and Whitmer would get along. Whitmer showed he has a sense of humor here. McGuinness gave Sal a receipt for punching him in the face by murdering him with a lariat. It was heat on Sal with solid cooperation between the heels. Finisher were spoiled by both teams. Whitmer “accidentallyÃ¢â‚¬Â kicked McGuinness in the face. They started fighting. Albright hit the ring to separate them, but then he and Whitmer doubled up on McGuinness.
Postmatch, Saints made peace with McGuinness. Whitmer and Albright challenged Saints to a match at a future show in Midlo. Sal is doing a gimmick where he’s running for president. A fan yelled “universal health care, Sal.Ã¢â‚¬Â
(12) Mike Quackenbush beat Claudio Castagnoli and Chuck Taylor to win the TPI and become the new IWA World Heavyweight Champion in a total time of 17:41. Taylor was content to sit back and pick his spots. Some of the highlights Castagnoli got caught in the Quacken Clutch. Taylor did a great flip dive. Castagnoli picked Quackenbush off the top rope with a climbing enzuigiri and gave Taylor a 13 revolution giant swing. Castagnoli hit the Ricola Bomb on Taylor, but he got a foot on the ropes. The spot of the match saw Quack somehow mount Taylor on Castagnoli’s shoulders. From there, he bitch slapped both of them and dropkicked Castagnoli’s knee to induce an Electric Chair drop on Taylor. Quackenbush kicked out of the Ricola Bomb and eliminated Castagnoli with a tombstone driver at 13:59. Taylor tried for a flash pin. No go. The crowd was huge for Quackenbush. He applied an STF and Taylor made the ropes. Taylor hit the Omega Driver. When Quackenbush kicked out, the handwriting was on the wall. Liger Bomb by Quackenbush for a near fall. Quack locked in the CHIKARA special. Explosive pop as Taylor tapped.
The postmatch was charged with emotion. Rotten said Quackenbush was a class act and he was honored to have him as tournament champion. Quackenbush reflected on what an incredible year 2007 has been for him Ã¢â‚¬â€œ starting with King of Trios, then marrying the girl of his dreams, winning the NWA Lightweight Title, winning the TPI, and an upcoming tour with Michinoku Pro. He said this moment would stay with him for the rest of his life. The crowd chanted “thank you Quack.Ã¢â‚¬Â Quackenbush called for one last chant for Ted Petty to close the show.
NOTES: The next IWA Mid-South show is in Joliet on 10/13. Their 500th show will be in Plainfield on 12/8 with Rottens’ retirement match vs. Mickie Knuckles and Sandman.