FIP Establish Dominance on April 2, 2017
Outside of Saddle Up – Orlando, Florida
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The Hardys kicked off the show by welcoming the fans, saying this will be better than anything Meekmahn could put together, and then singing the “fade away and classify ourselves as obsolete” song. Right to the action. With ‘Mania only a few hours away, there was no time to waste.
Uncle John's Friends (Sami Callihan, Darby Allin, Dave & Jake Crist) w/Priscilla Kelly vs. Sammy Guevara, ACH, Keith Lee & Michael Elgin
I was surprised that this tag would start off the show, but it makes more sense now that I think about it. I’m also a huge fan of main events kicking off shows. This served better as a multi-man opener as opposed to a main event. Balls to the walls action the whole way through with a lot of fun combinations like Elgin and Lee, Callihan and Lee, OI4K and Guevara, etc. Even Priscilla got involved by being Elgin bombed onto everyone. The match came to ahead after everyone wiped everyone out multiple times. Uncle John’s Friends won after a spike tombstone on Fox. Recommended watch.
FIP World Heavyweight Championship: Fred Yehi (c) vs. Dezmond Xavier
I now realize all the big matches are up early so that people can get to ‘Mania safe and sound ahead of time. This was the sleeper match of the weekend to me. This was more a solid title defense than a big time epic one would hope for given the match. The two meshed well with Xavier’s athletisim folding into Yehi’s technicality well. Lots of solid good grounded work that wasn’t over the top. I’m never going to complain about any of these matches unless they have someone I dispise, because everyone’s been wrecked after this weekend. The finish was insanity with Xavier being chucked into a turnbuckle then staying folded up, hit with a snap German, and getting locked up. Yehi won after a head and arm choke.
FIP Florida Heritage Championship: Martin Stone (c) vs. Jon Davis
The match started off hot which only made sense considering these guys’ three match feud — wanting to kill each other. We had a hoot of a walk and brawl with Stone BUMPING ON CONCRETE SHIRTLESS in 90 degree weather. The match built off of their past ones well, with pure wrestling on display. The two traded kickouts whether it be the StoneKO twice or anything else thrown their way. Even though it started out hot on the outside, it was a lot more methodical and psychology based than their other matches — ideal for their blowoff. Davis pulled through to gain back what’s his. Davis won after his combination, ending with a lariat. Best match on the show to this point. ‘Twas a successful build, entire feud, and grudge match regarding these two and the Heritage title. Happy for Jon Davis lately.
Stone put over Davis post-match in a “you’re the better man” moment.
Austin Theory vs. Caleb Konley
Real odd matchup here that’s a good learning experience for Theory and a sound addition to the card with Konley being the FIP veteran facing the new blood. Speaking of odd, an odd comparison to draw this to is that it reminded me of a decent 205 Live sprint. Very compact, full of action, the guys working super hard, and the crowd sort of being into it, but not loud. It only lasted a few minutes but was nice to see play out. Constant counters and hybrid chain wrestling start-and-stop. Not a whole lot to touch on aside the fact that Theory is a freak, because he can catch people in the craziest positions — he’ll be a great base in a few years minimum. Konley won after the certain finisher I didn’t catch!
Aria Blake vs. Priscilla Kelly
These two women were accompanying their separate squads in the eight man tag earlier. Dink wasn’t the only person eating ass during a ‘Mania weekend show, as Priscilla ventured into that genre on Aria. Priscilla’s character work is amazing, as she’d also smooth Aria while they were brawling. This literally was the Kelly show. She did tons of awesome things including a meteora onto Blake, who was sitting on a chair. The way she works her matches give them a unique identity. Aria got in little offense but was a solid babyface foil to Ms. 666. Priscilla won with an implant buster. Another good short addition to the card.
Jason Cade vs. Anthony Henry
The two Style Battle MVPs of 2017 thus far meet in a well deserved main event of the entire Broken Tailgate event. It felt like a Style Battle final, and was BY FAR the best match on the show. MSL and Trevin Adams helped this gain a main event feeling. The two wouldn’t stop killing each other in glorious ways. Whether it was Henry working on Cade’s leg (Cade never forgetting to sell), a springboard Canadian destroyer, countless stiff shots, tradings of nandos kicks, and a helluva pacing — this is pinpoint accuracy of a great main event sprint. I wish they went even longer, but from what they did in a short amount of time, you couldn’t have asked for a better match. Henry won after a leg lock. A great match, and a GREAT finale to WWN’s biggest ‘Mania week yet. Absolutely fantastic work from these two. I knew they’d kill it. I hope it spills over in the future, whether it be future Style Battle and/or FIP. Jason Cade is one of the MVPs of WrestleMania week.
Teddy Stigma wasted no time in jumping Henry post-match with his barbed wire bat. Establishing Dominance, alright.
FIP ESTABLISH DOMINANCE ON APRIL 2, 2017
Decent - 6.5/10
FIP Establishing Dominance 2017 was a great way to cap off WWN's week. At around the length of a featured film, the card provided immense variety with short match times across the board. A couple things popped me hard: Saturday Night's Main Event card placement, MSL getting a lot better on commentary, the warm cement/ring bumps, Priscilla Kelly wilding out in a lovable way, and the tremendous main event between Henry and Cade. Give it a watch if you've got an hour to kill, now that the strenuously busy week of 'Mania is over.