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*** Official FIP DVD Reviews by Brad Dykens ***
June 9, 2006 - CHASING the DRAGON - Inverness, Florida

I skipped a few months of FIP DVDs so there have been a lot of changes to how the company runs shows. There are a few new guys on the roster, and they have yet another brand new ring announcer named Jonathan Gold. The venue is bigger and the crowd is bigger too, but they aren't selling out the building. There is a new referee named Kentucky Jordon who is a young guy who has a mohawk. Dave Prazak and Jerry David are the announcers as usual.

The first match featured Kenny King, formerly of WWE Tough Enough, taking on the experienced Alex Porteau. You might remember Porteau from his very brief sting in the WWF as Alex "The Pug" Porteau in the mid-90s. If you're an older fan you might remember him as one of the stars of the Global Wrestling Federation in the 80s -- where he captured the GWF Light Heavyweight title four times! It's always good business to have an experienced veteran on your roster because the younger guys quickly learn new things. Alex Porteau won with an Armbar Submission ( 5 / 10 ). I'm so glad they aren't just jobbing him to put over younger guys. Good job FIP!

Korey Chavis, with So-Cal Val, defeated California-based wrestler Ryan Drago ( 2 / 10 ). The best part of this match was So-Cal Val.

Davey Richards came out wearing an ECCW shirt. ECCW is a promotion in British Columbia. Richards wanted a shot at American Dragon's FIP title. Dave Prazak & American Dragon came out and refused the challenge. Roderick Strong came out and got heckled for wearing fruity sandals; he also wanted the FIP title. Colt Cabana came out and wanted the FIP title, too. American Dragon declined, but also proposed a #1 Contenders Elimination match for the main event.

Steve Madison came out and threw his name into the #1 Contenders Elimination match and announced that his hired assassin Shingo Takagi would replace him in his match against Erick Stevens. Shingo is one of the stars of the Dragon Gate promotion in Japan. Erick Stevens still had that goofy mohawk but his confidence and attitude has change for the better. Shingo won with a Lariat followed by an Inverted Death Valley Driver ( 6.5 / 10 ). Shingo and Steve Madison attacked Erick Stevens after the match and gave him a stiff Spike Pile-driver. After the damage was done, Roderick Strong, Colt Cabana and Davey Richards came to help Stevens. Shingo Takagi should be wrestling guys like Austin Aries, Colt Cabana, Roderick Strong, or American Dragon.

Two weeks earlier, Black Market (Shawn Murphy and Joey Machete) took the FIP Tag Team titles from The Heartbreak Express (Sean and Phil Davis) in, from what I heard, the bloodiest match in FIP history. So-Cal Val and the Davis boys came out to complain about having their championships "stolen" from them. They wanted a rematch, so Black Market came out and attacked them and granted the HBE their rematch starting immediately!

Black Market looks different than the last time I saw them back on the January show, which incidentally was the first time I saw them. They look much better now, and while the Heartbreak Express pretty much look the same, they have shown amazing improvement since their inception. The match was an all-out brawl with relaxed rules and went on for about ten minutes before So-Cal Val's bodyguard, Kory Chavis interfered causing the disqualification ( 6 / 10 ). Well.... now I wanna see their match from "Bloodbath."

In a rare babyface vs. babyface match-up, the team of Chasyn Rance and Seth Delay took on Fast & Furious (Jerrelle Clark and Jay Fury) in a fast-paced, high-flying, energy-fueled tag team contest. Fast and Furious won and will now challenge Austin Aries and Roderick Strong for the ROH Tag Team titles tomorrow night at "Impact of Honor" ( 7 / 10 ).

American Dragon continued his streak of having dynamite matches with just about everybody he steps in the ring with. He recently faced Kamala on an independent show -- I'd love to see that one! There is a cliché in wrestling that when someone has good matches with everyone, they say "he wrestle a broom and have a good match." Well, American Dragon could wrestle a broom and have a great match. Dragon successfully defended the FIP championship against heavy crowd-favorite Salvatore Rinauro. Lots of indy-style action and both men were being very interactive with the fans, which is a forgotten art form in pro-wrestling. Great old-fashioned wrestling match ( 8 / 10 ).

The main event was a six-man Elimination match with the winner receiving an FIP title shot next time FIP came back to Inverness. It was The Canadian Cougar vs. Roderick Strong vs. Davey Richards vs. Steve Madison vs. Austin Aries vs. Colt Cabana.

Austin Aries eliminated Canadian Cougar. Steve Madison eliminated Roderick Strong by pulling the tights on the pinfall. Austin Aries eliminated Davey Richards by pinfall with his legs on the ropes for leverage. Colt Cabana eliminated Steve Madison. Colt Cabana eliminated Austin Aries to win the match ( 7.5 / 10 ). FIP Champion American Dragon attacked Colt Cabana after the match in an attempt to soften up the #1 Contender but Colt Cabana cleared the ring!

Final Thoughts: I notice the dumbest things. The crowd was full of grandpas, lots of kids, and a bunch of hot young girls. There were a half dozen or so girls in particular in the front row and all the wrestlers, good and bad, acknowledged this group of hotties in some form. They had one of those erasable boards and they were creating custom-made signs all night, and the wrestlers ate it up. I'd like to see them get one of those boards into a WWE event!

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