Competing against Pro Wrestling Guerrilla for not only fans, but also talent SoCal Pro celebrated their 5th Anniversary with one of the best shows of the year. There was a lot of consistency from the last show in Escondido to this show which I really feel helps keep the fans interested in coming back out. You can see where the SoCal Pro company has worked to build up some of their stars and developed some storyline that will more than likely spill into the next show. If you never watched a SoCal Pro show before, go to their website and buy this DVD. You will not be disappointed.
The show opened up with the Six Man Tag. Pulpo Dorado and Jimmy Ray Walker were brutalized last month in Escondido, when Pulpo Dorado upset Johnny Paradise. Paradise would pulverize Dorado; JRW came to his rescue only to be destroyed in similar fashion. It wasn’t until SoCal Crazy made the save. Tonight, the duo would partner with B-Boy to take on “Lovin” Nic Lovin, “The Polish Tyrant” Andre Machievski and the returning “Rotten” Ronnie Trash. Lovin and Machievski both had losing efforts at the Escondido show and this was the first time I had seen Ronnie Trash in SoCal Pro. Ronnie Trash is one of the biggest guys in all of SoCal and spent the past few years working with New Wave. B-Boy’s presence in SoCal Pro is incredible, as soon as his theme music hits the fans applaud in unison in support of the New Age Punisher. If you didn’t know whom B-Boy was, you’d think he was the SoCal Pro Heavyweight Champion. This match was a nice opener, a great way to get the show started. B-Boy is always fun to watch and I’m looking forward to seeing more of Dorado and Trash. I think Machievski needs a good feud to get into the swing of things. This match was exactly what you’d want it to be, a nice warm up to get the crowd going and the good guys won.
Ever since the reemergence of Chimaera in SoCal Pro Wrestling, everybody wanted to know who the man under the mask was. With Ricardo Rodriguez commitments to the WWE, you knew he wasn’t behind the mask. I really had no good guesses, maybe Locura out of retirement or Brandon Gatson. SoCal Crazy was all smiles prior to the event, but the minute Chimaera walked through the curtain, he was all business. Both men did a great job portraying the hate for each other, Crazy was rabid about revealing the identity of his opponent. On any other night this would have been my match of the night. SoCal Crazy was looking to finish Chimaera with his flying head scissors into an arm-bar submission, but finding his opportunity began to remove the mask of Chimaera, undoing the laces in the back. Unsuccessful in taking off the hood, Chimaera would break free. However Crazy would remove the mask while in the corner and Chimaera was none other than Johnny Paradise. To understand the lengths of why Paradise assumed the persona Chimaera persona, you’d have to understand the history between SoCal Crazy and Johnny Paradise. Their history spans a timeline that spills out of SoCal Pro Wrestling and into the Alternative Wrestling Shows. The match billed as Champion vs. Champion brought these two together. Both very proud champions, affiliated by NWA Pro Wrestling, SoCal Pro Wrestling and Alternative Wrestling Show announced that a match up would take place to crown a unified champion tying the two promotions together. SoCal Pro Heavyweight Champion SoCal Crazy would step into the ring against the AWS Heavyweight Champion Johnny Paradise. The titles would be unified and eventually broken apart , but there was always animosity between the two men. At the 4th Anniversary Show, Paradise was obsessed with taking the mask off of SoCal Crazy. To get the match, Paradise, offered his hair that set up the “Mascara Contra Cabellera.” Paradise would lose his hair and the feud would slowly fade out of the picture. So it would make sense that when the mask came off, it was Johnny Paradise underneath it. Johnny Paradise assumed a different working style for this match, adding a lot of lucha libre into his repertoire. I kept thinking that this new Chimaera reminded me of Super Dragon, which is probably the best compliment I could give Johnny Paradise. Paradise had previously trained at the Rudos Dojo under Ron Rivera and Super Dragon. Everett Scott realizing who Chimaera was tossed the match out, because Paradise was suspended for obliterating some of the undercard at the last show in Escondido. Crazy was rewarded with back to back jumping tombstone pile drivers. Something tells me that this feud isn’t over by any stretch of the imagination. Johnny Paradise really went to great lengths to make a good match great and like I wrote earlier on any other night, this would have been the Match of the Night.
Next up was the Triple Threat Tag Team Match for the SoCal Pro Tag Team Titles. Frosted Tip Warriors are really over in SCP. The Damage Control are even more over in SCP. Ballard Brothers returned and still generate heat, just by carrying that damn Maple Leaf Flag. The last time the Ballards returned to SoCal Pro, they stole the tag titles away; I firmly believed they were going to do it again. It was hard to keep up with the match, with the speed exhibited by the FTW, I think they could get over just about anywhere. Damage Control, Duke and Destro get the win and retain their titles. It was a fun match, but I’d rather just see two teams face off.
“The Mirror Image” Ricky Mandel skips out next. He reminds me a lot of Frankie Kazarian. I’m really kind of shocked he doesn’t get more work outside of SoCal Pro and NWA Hollywood. Mandel is young enough that he keeps getting better with each outing and a Veteran enough to help younger talent. His match with Nick Madrid a few months back was really good. Mandel cuts a promo about it being his time. The “Mirror Image” is apart of the Entourage of “The Mirror Image Mega Stars,” and now he’s looking to get into the SoCal Pro Championship Picture. Glad to see Mandel squaring off against Santos. Santos has gotten even bigger since returning from active military duty and looks great. This was a really back and forth and Santos won the match with his fireman’s carry into a gut buster, not sure what it’s called. Great win for Santos as he looks to get to the top of SoCal Pro.
“The Bone” Joey Barone made his way out next to take on the former SoCal Pro Heavyweight Champion “Radiant” Jason Redondo. Going into this match, Barone had to be considered an under dog. And The Bone took every bit of punishment that Redondo put out. But it would be “The Bone” who would walk out the winner. Barone got on the mic and said he was unbeatable and could defeat anyone in the back. Out walked B-Boy. And Barone got the hell out of dodge.
Tables… Ladders… Chairs… one of the most violent matches I have ever seen. The SoCal Pro Heavyweight Championship has been a trophy that Tommy Wilson has coveted ever since losing the title to Kid Caramba in January. Caramba’s reign lasted only 4 months, but the road that led him to the championship was a long one. Dating all the way back to June 11th when Caramba outlasted 16 men in the Southern California Classic Tournament. Kid Caramba’s path from that day forward was heading to “Mr. Megastar.” Caramba continued to work his way through the roster before winning the four way with SoCal Crazy, Johnny Paradise & Ricky Mandel to become the #1 Contender at Redemption. The next show, Caramba would defeat Tommy. That would leave Tommy to sit idly by at the opening of the Gold Fever III, left without a match. Tommy would make an example out of Johnny Yuma and at March Madness coaxed Caramba into a TLC match following their tag team bout. No chair or table would be spared. The Ladders would remarkable be crushed and would pop back into place. Some of the highlights was a Powebomb into the ladder that left Caramba quite deflated. Tommy Wilson missing a swanton through a table, a chair tossed at Tommy climbing the ladder, but what would essentially end the night would be Caramba going through 1 ½ tables on the outside, really taking a nasty fall. Tommy Wilson would emerge victorious.
Another great event for Jeff and Company, I’m looking for the next one. Already scheduled is Tommy Wilson taking on Marty Jannety of WWE Fame and Joey the Bone Barone taking on B-Boy.