Pro Wrestling Guerrilla held their latest show, Nice Boys (Don’t Play Rock n’ Roll), on March 18th. Despite the show taking place on a Saturday, traffic was terrible getting there from San Diego. The traffic would end up being the only negative on the day, as PWG ended up putting on a truly great show.
PWG is notorious for starting late, but doors actually opened about an hour and fifteen minutes before the 8:00 pm bell time. It was so surprising people in line with chairs and tables were scrambling to get stuff back to their cars. One of the big reasons for the late starts all the time is people in the promotion not being able to get to the venue due to traffic or what not on a Friday night. With a Saturday show it’s not as big of a problem. At exactly 8:00 pm on the dot Excalibur was in the ring to start his show opening promo.
He started by telling people to check their watches and mentioned this was the earliest that a show started since they ran a show at 2:00 pm. He then qualified that by saying that 2:00 pm show started at 3:45. Checking my review of the first PWG show, that show actually started on time as well, so maybe this is a once in an every 14 year occurrence, sort of like a wrestling version of Haley’s Comet.
Excalibur then announced he had some bad news to which the crowd loudly booed, prompting Excalibur to say “you don’t even know what my bad news is, I could just be here to remind you Donald Trump is our president and we are still living in a nightmare” He then chastised the crowd for only 11% of registered LA voters voting in the last election. The bad news ended up being that Adam Cole was unable to compete due to injury, and that Sami Callihan was free to join in any match he chooses.
Brian Cage defeated Keith Lee and Sami Callihan in a Triple Threat Match (16:00)
Sami Callihan didn’t wait long to select a match. Keith Lee was really over in this with loud “Keith Lee” chants throughout. Cage and Callihan had a sequence where both hit topes on each other, then repeated the sequence and hit the same topes a second time. Keith Lee is so athletic. A guy his size should not be able to pull off some of the stuff he was doing. All three guys just went all out in the match. I thought it was Cage’s and Callihan’s best PWG match in a little while. Brian Cage hit a Falcon Arrow on Lee to get the pin. There were a couple of sloppy parts in the match, but overall I thought it was great. Keith Lee got please come back chants after the match.
Rating: *** 3/4
Chosen Bros (Jeff Cobb & Matthew Riddle) defeated OI4k (Dave & Jake Crist) via submission (16:47)
Jeff Cobb and Matt Riddle are the team that no one knew we needed. They have been so good as a team and they really complement each other well. Cobb was a beast in this and was just tossing people around. Riddle looked really good as normal. I thought OI4K looked solid and they took a ton of punishment. It started out a little slower but it picked up nicely about a third of the way in. There was some impressive spots in the match, but at times the match seemed a little too spotty. Still it was a really good match. Cobb hit the Tour of the Islands on Jake and Riddle got Dave to tap with the Bromission.
Rating: *** 1/2
Lio Rush defeated Trevor Lee (13:29)
Trevor Lee still got a small amount of “delete” chants prior to the match. This was another fun match with both guys doing some really cool sequences. Lio Rush is so super athletic, and he did an awesome job selling Lee’s punishment throughout the match. Lio got a roll up to take the win.
Rating: *** 1/2
Shane Strickland defeated Dezmond Xavier (12:52)
This was both wrestler’s debuts in PWG, and Dezmond Xavier’s debut in California. Both wrestlers are super athletic and they did a ton of cool stuff in the match. The one downside to the match is they are so athletic there was a few times they tried some pretty crazy stuff that didn’t quite come off crisply. I still thought this was a great match however. It was pretty much a thirteen minute sprint of non-stop action. Strickland hit a Cuerno Killer to get the pin. There were “please come back” chants after the match.
Rating: *** 3/4
Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent?) defeated LDRS (Zack Sabre Jr. & Marty Scurll) (23:21)
This match was setup at the last show when Zack Sabre Jr. completed his PWG heel turn and attacked Taylor with Scurll after their match. This match had a ton of heat. Early on both Sabre and Scurll left the ring and went to the back, prompting Taylor and Trent? to go after them and bring them back out. The match was pretty even and went back and forth throughout. Sabre and Scrull tried a lot of submission based offense while the Best Friends had more of a raw aggression. Late in the match Scurll and Taylor battled to the back leaving just Sabre and Trent? in the ring. Trent? was able to hit a cradle piledriver on Sabre to get the win. Afterwards Scurll came out and slapped Sabre a few times, then they destroyed Trent? and Taylor, and put Taylor through a row of chairs. A Reseda Street Fight between Scurll and Taylor was setup for the next show. This was a great match that had crazy heat to it.
Rating: **** 1/4
PWG World Tag Team Championship – Three-Way Match: Rey Fenix & Penta el Zero M defeated The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) (c) and Ricochet & Matt Sydal in a Triple Threat Match to become the new PWG World Tag Team Champions (20:02)
This match was absolutely insane. Early in the match the Young Bucks taunted Lucha Brothers by doing the “cero miedo” hand signal causing Penta and Fenix to do the “suck it” crotch chop. This went back and forth for a minute then the Bucks got out of the ring and put on masks and continued to do it. This lead to Penta and Fenix putting on gold Young Bucks jackets and continuing the crotch chops. Ricochet and Sydal reappeared wearing masks, and Young Bucks jackets with long fringe and cleaning house. From that point on the match was non-stop craziness. They had a sequence where they were trading off doing spots on the ring apron and Ricochet was on the receiving end of a crazy looking Mexican Destroyer on the apron. They also had a sequence where they all did dives to the outside and Ricochet got so much air on a shooting star press he hit one of the lights. Eventually Penta hit a craddle piledriver on Ricochet and he bumped right into Fenix’ Mexican Destroyer getting the Lucha Brothers the win. This was an absolutely fantastic match and a strong SoCal match of the year contender.
Rating: **** 3/4
After the main event fans threw money in the ring, which lead to Legion Larry coming out and demanding that the money be handed over to him.
Last year PWG’s tag division was kind of floundering, but they have done a lot to rebuild it this year, and this show did a lot to showcase that. They also setup future matchups between The Lucha Brothers and Ricochet and Sydal and with the Bucks not taking the pin their eventual rematch. The Chosen Bros. were kept strong and they should be in the title mix as well. On the singles side they look to be keeping the Best Friends versus the LDRS going and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Trent? versus Scurll in May.
I thought this was PWG’s best single show since night 2 of last year’s Battle of Los Angeles. There wasn’t a bad match on the show, and not even a match that was merely good. Everything was great or better. The main event is easily worth going out of your way to see.