*** EVOLVE Wrestling DVD Reviews by Brad Dykens ***
September 11, 2010 – Rahway, New Jersey
EVOLVE 4: Danielson vs. Sawa
SINGLES MATCH Mike Quackenbush (0-0) vs. Chuck Taylor (3-0): Chucky T is on top of the leaderboard with an undefeated record of three wins (four if you count his qualifying match) and zero losses. He was a tad upset that this DVD wasn’t named after him and that he wasn’t part of the main event. Instead he faced off with the debuting veteran Mike Quackenbush. If I were Taylor, I wouldn’t take the Quack too lightly, and also count your blessings you’re not in the ring with Bryan Danielson. I also want to mention that it appears Taylor has formed some kind of alliance with Cheech & Cloudy. Taylor’s undefeated streak came to an abrupt halt when Quackenbush scored the somewhat surprising victory!
TAG TEAM MATCH Up In Smoke (Cheech & Cloudy) (2-0) vs. Aeroform (Flip Kendrick & Louis Lyndon) (1-3): This rivalry has been developing quickly while EVOLVE slowly builds its tag team division around prodominantly smaller teams pushing a more exciting in-ring style. It’s more like an X-Division Tag Team match. Aeroform really needed a victory here to stay alive in EVOLVE, but it was Up in Smoke coming out on top continueing their undefeated streak and staying on top of the tag team leaderboard. There was some question about if they cheated to win, but they went heel and said a win is a win and they didn’t care.
SINGLES MATCH Jimmy Jacobs (3-1) vs. Adam Cole (1-1): This match was set up on the previous DVD when Jimmy Jacobs laughed at Johnny Gargano for losing to a “jabroni” like Adam Cole. Cole stood up for himself and challenged Jacobs to a match, but Jacobs wouldn’t dignify the challenge with a response. Jacobs continued his disrespect for Cole, and there must have been some back-and-forth interaction on the internet leading up to this show where the match was made official. Cole put up a good fight, and even got to spit in Jimmy’s face, but Jacobs did score a relatively low effort victory here. With this victory, combined with Chuck Taylor’s loss earlier, puts Jimmy Jacobs back on top of the singles division leader board – making him “the man to beat.”
SINGLES MATCH Sami Callihan (2-0) vs. Drake Younger (2-0): Both men have a record of two wins and zero defeats, so one wrestler will fall and the other will rise when this one is all said and done. As soon as the bell rang, they started going at it fast and furious, and didn’t stop – not letting anybody get in the way (not even the camera man or the fans). Callihan got busted open and blood started pouring down his forehead. Younger saw the blood and made a crimson target out of it. A victory here would put the winner right below #1 Jimmy Jacobs on the leader board. Callihan fought like a mad man, but the blood loss wore him down too much as the viciously hardcore Younger rabidly pursued victory. Younger indeed came out victorious and set his sights on Jimmy Jacobs and the top of the leader board.
BACKSTAGE SEGMENT: Bryan Danielson scoled Chuck Taylor for playing games with the office and clowning around too much. Danielson said Taylor could be the face of the company if he wanted to, but the way he is acting he doesn’t know if he has the guts to do it right now. They’re setting up for a Danielson vs. Taylor match that would never happen because Bryan would eventually return to WWE.
6-MAN MATCH (ONE FALL) Jon Moxley (0-1) vs. Johnny Gargano (2-2) vs. Brad Allen (2-1) vs. Gran Akuma (1-1) vs. Frightmare (0-0) vs. Rich Swann (0-0): For me this match was between Jon Moxley and Johnny Gargano, because nobody else in the match deserves to win it. Moxley is the one who needs it the most, because he belongs in main events and he won’t make it there with a losing record. Come to think of it, they are developing a storyline where Moxley is having trouble following the rules of EVOLVE. Early on in the match, Brad Allen botched a spring-board back flip and landed badly on his head. The crowd showed almost as much sympathy as Jon Moxley, who picked Allen up and smashed him up some more. Frightmare is like a mini Hallowicked. Allen spent a great deal of time down on the ring apron, but eventually made a full recovery. He actually had the guts to do a big dive over the top rope onto all five of his opponents, despite the audience begging him not to even try it! Gagrno stayed on the floor watching some of the guys fight in the ring, but picked the right moment to sneak in and steal a pin on Frightmare to earn a much needed victory for himself!
IN THE RING Lenny Leonard & Johnny Gargano + Homicide + Jon Moxley: Johnny Gargano called himself the baddest man on the planet, and this brought “The Notorious 187” Homicide out to the ring. Homicide laughed at Gargano’s invitation to high-five, and flipped him the bird! Homicide told Gargano that HE is the baddest man on the planet and told Gargano to get the hell out of his ring. Gargano immediately backed off and still tried to make friends with Homicide. Jon Moxley jumped in the ring and confronted Homicide, who said he has seen so many tapes of Moxley – calling him the hottest wrestler in independent wrestling. Homicide said he was back and he will be keeping his eye on Moxley! Homicide was wearing a Bruiser Brody t-shirt and said he was back on the indies and is going to take control of EVOLVE.
IN THE RING Lenny Leonard & Jon Moxley: They announced that Brodie Lee had been suspended from EVOLVE for his actions on the previous DVD when he assaulted Jon Moxley with a chair and kinda went berzerk. After the intermission, Moxley came out to the ring and said he wasn’t asking for a match with Brodie Lee, he was demanding that the company give him his match with Brodie Lee.
WSU CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH Mercedes Martinez (4-0) vs. Amazing Kong (0-0): Up until now, Mercedes Martinez has been wrestling a bunch of jabronettes on EVOLVE shows, but started challenging Amazing Kong to come face her. Kong finally answered the challenged and showed up to defend her reputation as the biggest baddest bitch in pro-wrestling. It was the longest women’s match in EVOLVE so far, and also the most aggressive. Kong almost blew it when she shoved the referee, but luckily he let it go. Moments later, Kong got upset again and kicked the referee in the gut. This time he called for the bell and disqualified Kong. Martinez and Kong continued to brawl behind the curtain and towards the locker room.
SINGLES MATCH Kyle O’Reilly (2-1) vs. Ricochet (1-2): This match is usually what you’d call a curtain jerker, so I had a strong suspicion something unusual was going to happen. Then again maybe they will just cut them loose and let them showcase their skills in a semi-main event spot. After 15 minutes of crowd pleasing action, it was Ricochet with his arm raised in victory. Both men elevated their game and provided the fans with an excellent match, and ironically both ended up with a 2-2 record following the result.
THE MAIN EVENT Bryan Danielson (1-0) vs. Munenori Sawa (1-0): Everything Bryan Danielson touches turns to gold. It also doesn’t hurt when he steps in the ring with a high-quality International star like Sawa. Danielson was impressed by Sawa’s performance on EVOLVE 1 against TJP, and wanted to test his own skills in this one-on-one match. The commentators agreed that this match may not end by pinfall or submission, but possibly by knockout. Danielson and Sawa punched, kicked, stretched, bent, and broke each other into pieces throughout the match. The fans showed appreciation with a “best in the world!’ chant in honor of Danielson. After some really painful moments, the “American Dragon” finally forced Sawa to tap out with the LeBell Lock (his WWE finisher). The match felt like it was just getting started and could have gone another twenty minutes if they wanted to. Danielson showed respect for Sawa after the match and praised the EVOLVE concept, calling it his “baby” and it is exactly what he wants wrestling to be. Danielson thanked the fans for always supporting him; when he got fired by WWE and even when he resigned with WWE.
If you would like to purchase this or any other EVOLVE DVD
please check out the EVOLVE website at EVOLVEwrestling.com