Welcome back to MLW. The ultimate hybrid company decided to open the new year with a super-card event on free TV. Rather than the regularly scheduled Fusion, we were treated to Kings of Colosseum, a large-scale event with larger-scale matches. On this show, we’d see Alex Hammerstone finally get his hands on Mads Krügger, Jordan Oliver vs Simon Gotch, the Von Erichs defend their MLW Tag Team Titles against the Dirty Blondes, and the ultimate middleweight match as Lio Rush was presented a challenge at Myron Reed’s belt. it was going to be one hell of a show so let’s get into the action!

The Von Erichs (Ross & Marshall Von Erich) defeated The Dirty Blondes (Leo Brien & Michael Patrick w/Aria Blake) via Claw-Plex on Patrick

The show started with a good ol’ fashioned bunkhouse match. It would be Col. Robert Parker’s Dirty Blondes taking on The Von Erichs for the MLW Tag Team Titles. Parker had politicked this match into being so Brien and Patrick were going to have some fun at Ross and Marshall’s expense. The Von Erichs were more than ready though as they had their street fighting jeans on. There was nothing pretty to start as both teams threw hands and after a double dropkick, brawled around the ring. After a mass of kicks, bites, and punches, the fight blitz through the locker room to the outside of the venue. Ross and Marshall used chairs and a table to incapacitate the Blondes but a back rake and eye-poke allowed Parker’s giants to drag the Von Erichs back to the ring. They got as far as the locker room before another round of brawling broke out and both teams fought with improvised weapons. Marshall cracked Brien with his own cowbell and Patrick distracted Ross with fake apologies so Blake could hit him with a low blow. Marshall was having more success outside with Brien as he reversed a piledriver into a back-body drop, splatting Brien on the hard floor. Back in-ring, Blake was trying to choke Ross out but she was thrown off and Patrick was punched into Marshall for the Claw-Plex double-team. It was a short match but it had a lot of fun old-school brawling that I will always be a fan of. It was a nice way to open the show and ended with the Von Erichs announcing they’d signed an open challenge contract so they would fight anyone and everyone who wanted some. So please, give me a Violence is Forever challenge, please.

MLW Middleweight Title: Lio Rush defeated Myron Reed (w/Jordan Oliver) via Final Hour

Next up, was the top title fight of the night. Myron Reed, the Young GOAT, was taking on Lio Rush, the hottest free-agent on the market. This was going to be a battle of two greats, with Reed facing not only his greatest challenge yet but also one of his idols. The pair started technical with both men trading holds to a stalemate. Rush showed disrespect towards Reed triggering a rope running sequence that saw Reed end up rolled up. He kicked out and reversed a Rush Cazadora bulldog into a rope-bounce slam and slingshot leg drop. He kicked Rush in the gut and tried for a half and half but Rush broke out and blast Reed with a back elbow. That was followed by a series of dodges and a handspring kick that sent Reed to the outside for a suicide dive. The disrespect continued and Rush scored a two-count with a Suplex. Rush tried to keep Reed grounded on his front and tried to tire him out with a chin-lock. Reed fought to his feet and a slugfest broke out. Reed rocked Rush with a jawbreaker but Rush came back with a schoolboy 540 kick. He kept kicking at Reed on the ground and bashed him against the turnbuckles. He hit Reed with a backdrop and returned to the grounded chin-lock and Cobra clutch. Reed fought to his feet again and rammed Rush off the turnbuckles until he was thrown off into a snapmare takeover and clothesline combo. Rush retreated to the corner and was hit by a ring in codebreaker and leaping crossbody. He scored a two-count with a springboard corkscrew elbow and nearly got rolled up off another half and half attempt. Reed finally nailed the half and half but Rush just tanked it and let out a war cry. He charged Reed but got caught into a fireman’s carry slam and thrust kick for another two-count. He rolled to the outside and baited Reed into another kick, then caught him with a bottom rope Asai Moonsault. He continued the assault with a twisting facebuster and a nasty clothesline when Reed tried to fight back. Reed hit the Suplex cutter counter and hammered Rush with forearms, then after a series of back-and-forth strikes, blasted Rush with the Matrix escape Enzuigiri. Rush retreated to the apron for a breather but Reed sent him crashing to the floor with an inside-out cutter. He missed the No Cap Splash and Rush wasted no time hitting the Come-Up and The Final Hour for the win.

Rush has claimed the Middleweight title after a gruelling bout with Myron Reed. It wasn’t the easy fight he’d expected but Rush was not humble about the win. He claimed he was the real money-weight champion and that no one was going to be able to stop him. Things went from bad to worse for Reed as he and Oliver were attacked backstage by Jacob Fatu and Gotch with a new CONTRA member, Daivari.

Between the matches:

  • We learned the Oliver/Gotch grudge match had been cancelled because Gotch had gone missing. Whether there was a legit reason or CONTRA subterfuge, no one knew for sure.
  • Filthy Tom Lawlor talked about his adventures with the Opera Cup since winning it and announced the beginning processes of making Filthy Island
  • Another PWI Top 10 that went Krügger, Calvin Tankman, Laredo Kid, ACH, Richard Holliday, Myron Reed, LA Park, Low Ki, Filthy Tom Lawlor, and at number 1, Alex Hammerstone. That top spot remains untouched.
  • Josef Samael cut another scathing promo on MLW whilst threatening another new CONTRA member would show themselves tonight.
  • Salina de la Renta announced that next week would be her produced episode of MLW Fusion. She had given Los Parks a Tag Title shot with Tom Lawlor as special guest referee.

National Openweight Title: Alex Hammerstone vs Mads Krügger ends in double count-out

Last but not least, the main event. It would be a battle of the titles as Alex Hammerstone looked to kill the man who put him on the shelf, Mads Krügger. The Black Hand of CONTRA has carved a path of destruction through the company but he’d never taken on someone like Hammerstone. There was no time for the bell as Hammerstone instantly went after Krügger and blasted him in the face with the belt. He climbed to the top but Krügger had recovered and sent him crashing to the mat with a deadly drive. He popped back up and instantly went to town on Krügger in the corner. Krügger tried to toss Hammerstone to the outside but Hammerstone clung on and tried to deliver a shoulder barge, but the Black Hand booted him back outside. He continued to pound away at Hammerstone on the outside and dropped him face-first on the apron. Even back in-ring, Krügger shook off Hammerstone’s chops and battered him in the corner. Hammerstone came back big by tossing the monster with an overhead belly to belly and downed him with a flying clothesline. He beat Krügger around the turnbuckles and sent him flying with a massive Pumphandle Suplex but that only got one. The Black Hand fought out of the Nightmare Pendulum and once again, the pair was trading hands in the corner. The ref tried to break them up, so the fight spilled to the floor with both guys going wild and knocking out cameramen. The action went up to the stage and the show ended with the ref counting them out and the pair fighting into the backstage area.

That was that. We got a nice blend of big guy fighting and a predictable end that ensures we get an even more violent rematch. I found this enjoyable and know for a fact that there’s an even bigger match between the two waiting down the line, so I can take the shorter, more frantic match here. This was an excellent super-card show with excellent variety, some nice surprises, and the big shock win for Lio Rush. That Middleweight match was unbelievably good and I look forward to seeing what’s next for Rush’s MLW run and Injustice’s next steps after the CONTRA attack. Next week, we’ll have the special Salina de la Renta produced episode of MLW Fusion with a massive title match for Los Parks next week, and an impending ACH vs. Jacob Fatu fight the week after. Things kicked off in a big way here and only intend to get wilder. Welcome to 2021 MLW.

All images courtesy of MLW Twitter, Video courtesy of MLW YouTube

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