Welcome back to GCW and the continuation of their return to NYC. They’ve gotten lost here before and now, they were bringing some very big games to get lost there too. Not only was AR Fox returning to the company to battle Alex Zayne, but we’d also see Taiji Ishimori travel across the globe to battle Tony Deppen, Starboy Charlie, and Chris Dickinson team up to take on the SGC, Nick Gage vs Grim Reefer, and more leading to an epic main event that would see Homicide, one of the US’s most respected wrestlers taking on Minoru Suzuki, one of Japan’s most respected wrestlers. That was going to be a dream match for sure.

Alex Zayne defeated AR Fox via Taco Driver

Up first was a match that could easily steal the show. AR Fox is one of the most understated masters of his craft and the Sauce Alex Zayne has been looking to reignite his fire in GCW. Now the two were going to collide in the opening match and fire the crowd up. As expected, it totally did. When you put two crazy storytellers who love putting on high-flying spectacles, you know you’re in for a treat. Fox mixed his usual unpredictable high-flying creativity with limb targeting to try and take Zayne out by damaging his neck. Zayne slugged back and found he had to be more aggressive than normal to prevent further damage and cut off Fox’s momentum. Both threw caution to the wind and had to take a breather after Zayne nailed an accidental Kappu Kick. He woke up Fox with disrespect and earned himself another ass-whooping as Fox bust out even more cool moves, flipping into a twisting Suplex. It didn’t keep Zayne down for long though as he scored a near-fall with the Baja Blast. Fox returned the favour with a Lo Mein Pain into the 450 Splash but somehow that only got two too. He tried to end things with the Fox Catcher but Zayne countered into a Taco Knee strike and the Taco Driver to take the win. This match kicked ass. It’s always a blessing to see AR Fox in action. The constant innovator found himself battling another constant innovator and the pair showed their respect at the end of the bout. This is how you open a show.

Internet Title Match: EFFY defeated Matt Cardona in 5 Seconds

Ah yes, we had to put up with some Matt Cardona as he had a very important announcement to make regarding his GCW future. He’d brought the GCW Universal Title and the Internet Title with him to show he was still a belt collector but that didn’t stop the crowd booing him into oblivion. He addressed the crowd as the real deathmatch king and promised to still be here whether the marks liked it or not. He wasn’t going anywhere and talked of the Internet Championship being recognised as a title and that made him the longest reigning champion at over a decade with the belt. His big announcement though was that he had a rematch clause and he was making the GCW Title match between Jon Moxley and Nick Gage a triple-threat. Brett Lauderdale cut him off and made him earn his rematch. Put the Internet Title on the line and win, you get your title shot. He tried to back out of that so he was goaded into defending it. EFFY answered the challenge as Goodbye Yellow Brick Road soothed the crowd. EFFY slipped in the back door, rolled him up, and took the Internet Title. A decade-long title reign had been ended in an instant. EFFY had his prized possession and Brett led the crowd in a chant getting rid of him. Cardona’s life was ruined in 5 seconds.

Atticus Cogar defeated Jordan Oliver (w/YDNB) via Brain Haemorrhage

With Cardona exorcised from the company, it was time to get back to the action. Jordan Oliver, the star killing and his gang, YDNB were out to play, He was going to be fighting another star killer, the Silver Teeth Satan, Atticus Cogar. He was looking to show how he could handle the business RSP never could and a big win over the Clout Cutter would be a great way to show that, especially as he was alone whilst Oliver had Charlie Tiger and Ellis Taylor. This was an excellent wrestling match between two young guns. Oliver was trying to fight fair whilst Cogar looked to get as dirty as he could without weapons. They still had shock spots as Oliver landed a railing-hung double stomp but Cogar was looking to show he had wrestling ability, not just plunder prowess. He got by with his Lionsault and striking for the most part. Oliver gave him everything he had and nearly murdered him with Cleopatra and the Yakuza Kick but it never seemed to be enough. Eventually, Cogar found his rhythm but couldn’t get it done either. He brought out the skewers and used them as bait so Oliver would take out his crew. A low blow and Brain Haemorrhage later, Cogar was the winner. Oliver played it clean but against Cogar, that’s a bad idea. To his credit, he needed no deathmatch toys to win this but it still stings to see the Star Killer fall again.

GCW Tag Title Match: The Second Gear Crew (Mance Warner & Matthew Justice) defeated Chris Dickinson & Starboy Charlie via Powerplex Splash to Charlie

Time to get rough. Pantera’s Walk filled the air once again as SGC brought those GCW Tag Titles out for another defence. This time they were putting them on the line against the master/protégé team of the Dirty Daddy Chris Dickinson and the young breakout Starboy Charlie. They’d formed a team through mutual respect and were now going to take it on a test drive against the chaotic force of SGC. This was a different type of war for SGC. They’re used to coming in and making any teamwork their style of match. This didn’t happen here at first as Dickinson and Charlie used their technicality to work around SGC. Charlie became an SGC punching bag and did his best to work through Justice and Warner’s tactics and punishment but SGC were too smart to let him tag. This was a different side of SGC, showing they’re every bit a real tag team. The plunder made its way into the match but that would be SGC’s temporary undoing as it allowed Charlie to tag and unleash the wrath of Dickinson. A chair and door spear took out Dickinson and would have been the end of the match had Charlie not made the save. He and Dickinson showed off some excellent teamwork and set up for a Doomsday Device but Justice cut them off with a chair only to eat an Assisted VanDaminator from the duo. SGC found a way to come back and isolated Charlie after taking out Dickinson with a Cactus Clothesline. He fought like hell but an Eye Poke and Total Elimination snuffed him out. Dickinson made the save but it only prolonged the inevitable as Justice took him out with a cannonball chair dive. A Powerplex later and the match was theirs. SGC had toppled another challenger but boy Charlie and Dickinson got to them. This was a great first outing for the Dirty Daddy and Starboy duo and an excellent showcase of SGC’s actual tag ability. This was seriously great.

Taiji Ishimori defeated Tony Deppen via Bloody Cross

Okay, bar the main event, this was my most hyped match of the night. I adore Taiji Ishimori and think he’s one of the best members of Bullet Club. Now, he was coming to the GCW and he was going to go one on one with the gatekeeper, Tony Deppen. Even without this clash of personalities, this was going to be off the chain based on each guy’s ability. They opened with technicality and went right into a face-paced game of countering cat and mouse. Ishimori used the handshake trick to take advantage and started beating the hell out of Deppen whilst trying to break his arm. Deppen fought back into it and started taking to the air to knock Ishimori around, hitting him with springboards, dives and double stomps. His arm gave him trouble but he didn’t let it stop him from getting into a slugfest with Ishimori when prompted. A handspring kick knocked Deppen loopy again and Ishimori followed up quickly with double knees and a bridging DVD. He trapped Deppen in a Crossface but couldn’t keep him from reaching the ropes. Deppen blocked the Bloody Cross with a headbutt and went for the kill with knee strikes into a Tombstone. He tried for an STF but that injured arm meant he couldn’t lock it in fully. Deppen exposed his knee for the knee strike but Ishimori countered into one of his own. He tried for the Tombstone double knees but Deppen countered that into a deep Crucifix and scored another near-fall. Ishimori was shaken and ate the Tornado Codebreaker but still had the energy to kick out. They slugged it out again and went into slaps with Deppen firing up only to be decapitated with a lariat. Ishimori landed the Tombstone Double Knees and ended things with the Bloody Cross. As predicted, this was off the charts. It became a battle of wits and wills as both fighters massacred each other. They were evenly matched, brutal in their approach and both ended up putting on one of the best matches of the night.

Scramble: Ninja Mack defeated Nick Wayne, Jimmy Lloyd, Cole Radrick, Deranged & Dante Leon via Phoenix 630 on Wayne

It wouldn’t be a GCW show without a Scramble. This one was special though as it was infused with Special K and a scramble specialist, Deranged. He was among some of GCW’s best and brightest as he took on Jimmy Lloyd, Cole Radrick, Nick Wayne, Dante Leon and Ninja Mack. There was going to be some sparks flying in this one. As expected, they all killed it. Deranged was schooling the younger talent and we got to see all the high-flying action we’ve come to expect from the talent in the ring. Lloyd and Radrick took the chance to show their innovation whilst Wayne, Leon and Mack found different ways to break the laws of physics. It all flew by so quickly you were left wanting more. The last time we saw Deranged, he was at the Homicide Tribute Show so it was great to see him back in action and busting skulls. It was a bout of pure chaos as once again, the GCW brand of scramble showcased everyone well and brought the crowd back to life after the intermission. Wayne, Mack and Leon went wild in the last stretch with Wayne showcasing some of the most innovative Suicide Dives ever and Ninja Kamikaze Mack taking the big win with that insane Phoenix 630. What a bloody scramble.

AJ Gray defeated Yoya via Death by Lariat

Oh no. Now, let it be said, Yoya is an incredible fighter. He’s MMA-trained and can lock you up like it’s nothing but this was going to be one of his toughest tests ever. You see when you’re in the ring with AJ Gray, it can easily become a murder. They’d gotten heated during Emo Fight’s scramble so now they were going to beat each other senseless in a singles match. That heat hadn’t dissipated overnight and Yoya found himself using his speed and wits to take out a very pissed Gray. He found this speed gave him a massive advantage as he could outmanoeuvre Gray for the opening stretch. It didn’t last forever and Gray started destroying Yoya. Gray chopped him about, dropped him with Brainbusters and whipped him around the ring like it was nothing. You piss off the Truth, you pay the price. Yoya came back to life and the crowd lost their minds as the pair got heavier and heavier with each other. Gray took more punishment but caught Yoya into a chokeslam and showed he could fly with an attempted Moonsault. Yoya tried to capitalise but he couldn’t keep Gray down. It didn’t work and Gray drilled him with an Air Raid Crash. Yoya wouldn’t die and got the counter of the century with a Head-scissor Piledriver. Gray kicked out and started delivering lariats. That ended things quickly and extinguished the fire called Yoya. This was way more open and way better than expected as Yoya stepped up to the challenge and pushed Gray way harder than he could have expected. Even Gray was impressed, ending things with a hug. What a match.

Nick Gage defeated Grim Reefer via Chokebreaker/Piledriver Combo

I don’t quite know what to expect from this one. This was going to be a battle between two legends, the Grim Reefer, the highest in the room and the God of this shit Nick F’N Gage. MDK had returned to New York and it was battling the master of high style. Great friends make better enemies and that was what was going to be on offer here. It was also Gage in a wrestling match, not a deathmatch. It was exactly what you’d expect from this pairing, some light plunder, a lot of striking and some entertaining as hell Reefer luchador action. It wasn’t something you could write a whole lot about. it was fun to watch but writing about it wouldn’t convey it. You just have to watch it and see if you’ll enjoy it too. It was a bit sloppy and a bit messy but hey, that made it feel like a fight. When it was over, there was broken doors and broken bodies but no broken spirits as the fans were cheering on both fighters. We even saw Reefer threatening to enter Gage’s world with a door shank. That gave Gage the chance to hit the Chokebreaker and Piledriver to take the win. It had been a knock-out, drag-out fight but in the end, the King had taken the win again, besting the King of Queens.

Minoru Suzuki defeated Homicide via Rear-Naked Choke

Last but not least, the main event. Two legends of the game from different countries, different backgrounds but with the same work ethic and status colliding in a GCW ring. Homicide, the notorious 187, a mainstay of US independent wrestling was taking on Minoru Suzuki, the king of Japan. This was going to be something special. Even as introductions were made, you could tell both men were ready to fight. They opened with chops as Homicide removed his shirt and straps to give Suzuki more of a target. The pair kept getting harder with their chops as both guys showed their love for the fight. Suzuki was having fun and kept egging Homicide and the fans on. Homicide scored the first knockdown with a tackle and Suzuki made him pay with a Tarantula armbar. The fight went to the streets and Suzuki used the ring post to mangle Homicide’s arm and hand. They brawled around ringside and Homicide brought the fork out when the fight returned to the ring, initiating a grand struggle to not be stabbed. Suzuki booted it away and went back to breaking that arm, twisting and bending every finger on Homicide’s hand. Homicide tried to fight with the broken arm but fell right back into the spider’s web. Suzuki admired the fight from Homicide and got caught by an Exploder as Homicide fired up. He countered the Sleeper with a Back Suplex but Suzuki booted back and caved in his chest with a PK.

Homicide shrugged off a cocky cover and the pair went back to forearming each other. Despite the inhuman amount of blows to the collarbone and jaw, neither would go down and smiled at the impact. Homicide fought off the Gotch and landed the Ace Crusher but only got two. He scored another two-count with a lariat and fired up Suzuki with more elbows to the jaw. Homicide even exposed his elbow to deliver even deadlier elbows but still couldn’t put Suzuki away. He tried for the ultimate weapon, the Cop Killa but Suzuki fought out and slid through into the Sleeper. Homicide fought out of the Gotch again and with an emphatic “fuck you” the pair went back to forearm city. Suzuki locked in the choke for the third time and almost put Homicide to sleep. He transitioned to a Rear-Naked Choke and Homicide passed out. Holy shit. This was a main event level fight. Homicide brought out that brawler side of Suzuki that gave us an exceptional match of striking viciousness. You know you’ve done well when Minoru Suzuki thanks you for the fight. This was a god-tier bout with Homicide showing everyone why he is one of the best by taking the fight to one of the best. This was an epic. Go watch this match, go watch this show. it kicked every degree of ass.

All images courtesy of GCW, EFFY, 2ndGunny, Screenshots, Kayden

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