Reviews US Indies

IWC Super Indy 15 Review: Chasing Championships

Photo credit: Rachel Beals Photography

International Wrestling Cartel Super Indy 15

Watch: smvod.com

June 11, 2016

Court Time Sports Center – Elizabeth, PA


Being from the Pittsburgh area, IWC is pretty much my local promotion. I was really psyched looking forward to Super Indy this year but conflicts with vacation made it a no-go for me. Fortunately, the show has gone up on Smart Mark and I can shine a little light on some Western Pennsylvanian independent wrestling.

As usual for Super Indy there’s a hype video to start the show. This looks like your typical indie wrestling hype video. This year’s lineup is a pretty solid one though.

Super Indy 15 First Round Match: Darin Dinero vs. Gory

Originally, Zachary Wentz was supposed to wrestle Dinero in the first round but he had to pull from the tournament due to an injury. IWC owner Justin Plummer made a few calls to some former Super Indy champions and found a last minute replacement in the veteran Gory. I’m pretty alright with this. Gory is a staple for indie wrestling in this area.

Both of these guys have charisma and in two completely different ways. Dinero is great at playing a cocky heel or a cocky babyface even, he knows he has a great look and he’s solid in the ring too. He still has room for improvement but he has a lot of potential. Gory is a dark and unorthodox kind of guy. He crawled around the ring, bit Dinero a whole bunch, and found other ways to innovate arm drags and dives. Dinero wrestles more of a strong style kind of match, with big boots, lariats, forearms and suplexes. This was Gory’s 7th Super Indy, more than anyone else, so he was over as hell, as was Dinero. This was a pretty good 10+ minute match, I enjoyed this quite a bit. Dinero won with Greetings From Elizabeth, a fireman’s carry into a knee to the face (No, you go to sleep.)

Super Indy 15 First Round Match: Dezmond Xavier vs. Josh Alexander

This was my first time watching Dezmond Xavier wrestle although I’ve heard a little bit about him. What an athlete this guy is. He wrestled a high octane, flippy shit, fast-paced kind of style, and I’m usually down with that. I like how that mixed with Alexander’s physical, intense style of his own. This was another good first round match, in fact I’d go as far to say that it was very good. There was great action here, Xavier wowed me with standing corkscrew SSP, back handspring-pele kick, and more. He bumped great for Alexander too, who looked like a force. Xavier looked good in defeat too. In an awesome finishing sequence, Xavier flipped himself into a spinning tombstone piledriver from Alexander for the win. Really good stuff.

Super Indy 15 First Round Match: Sugar Dunkerton vs. Jonathan Gresham

Good ol’ Suge D, gotta love him. Elizabeth, PA sure does. He was over as hell and got “Welcome Back” chants from the IWC faithful. He was in Super Indy last year and had fun first round match with Cedric Alexander and this year was even better with Jon Gresham. This was much different from the first two first round matches. It was more grounded and mat-based, and Suge D even hung with “The Best Technical Wrestler in the World” Gresham. At one point practically mocking his style, by turning it into a slow dance routine. Then you have to blink twice to make sure you’re not watching a Korakuen Hall Show on the brand new RealHero archive, when Gresham and Suge are puffing their chests out at each other, taking chops from the other. Later on they returned to this spot, after Gresham had worked over Suge’s arm/hand and snapped his fingers, and Suge couldn’t chop him. Great storytelling. At times Suge is a little gassed and slow and there’s one sloppy spot but nothing takes away from the match in a major way. Gresham wins by submission with an Octopus Stretch. Yet another good first round match that adds to the consistency of the show thus far.

Super Indy 15 First Round Match: Chris LeRusso vs. Andrew Palace

Unless I’m mistaken, these two guys are currently in a feud over Palace’s Super Indy championship so this had some heat behind it. Palace rushed into the ring and wasted no time trying to kick LeRusso’s ass. This was a straight out fight at first, spreading to the outside area, and Palace took a nasty side slam onto a steel chair. Once the match got back into the ring LeRusso slowed down the pace and the match ended up feeling more like a WWE-paced match. The big moves felt big and there were some great near falls. LeRusso was great at heeling it up, spitting water in Palace’s face and letting Benjamin C. Steele get involved at ringside to take advantage. I really thought LeRusso had Palace here several times but Palace came away victorious after two second Hernia Drivers. At first I couldn’t really get into LeRusso but the more matches I watch him in the more I warm up to him. I like Andrew Palace a good bit but I’m not as crazy as some of the other local fans are about him. All in all though, this really was a very good match. First round of Super Indy overdelivered.

Super Indy 15 Second Round Match: Darin Dinero vs. Josh Alexander

This was what I expected a match between these two to be, physical and hard hitting. Alexander walked away looking like a million bucks here. He dominated a good portion of the match early on and it almost looked as if it was gonna be a squash for him. He’s really coming into his own as a bully type of wrestler. Dinero got some stuff in early but then spent a while on defense. When he mounted his comeback is was pretty alright but he needs a little more “oomph” in some of his strikes. Especially those running boots into the corner. This evolved from an Alexander squash into a pretty good back and forth contest. Dinero kicked out of a SUNSET DRIVER FROM THE SECOND ROPE and these two traded blows on there knees. So there was some good drama here. One thing I’d knock this match for is its finish. Alexander won with a roll-up, it just felt pretty anticlimactic. The two shook hands after the match and showed respect.

Super Indy 15 Second Round Match: Andrew Palace vs. Jonathan Gresham

Gresham targeted Palace’s arm throughout this whole match and that’s what the match was centered around. It’s the little things in wrestling that really get me, and Gresham was doing that here by holding down the worked over arm during pins, and using Palace’s kickouts with it to transition into arm submissions. These guys are both pretty athletic and that was on display. Gresham was quick as a cat, and Palace was pretty good here too. He hit Gresham with an incredible shotgun dropkick, making him go flying into the corner. This was probably the weakest match on the card at this point, but was still enjoyable. The flow of it felt a little off at times but we still got some cool offense from both competitors and an MMA-like finish that I loved. Gresham locked in the Octopus Stretch and just pounded into Palace’s face until the ref called the match.

IWC Tag Team Championship Match: The Fraternity (Channing Decker & Trent Gibson) (c) vs. Asylum & John McChessney

John McChessney cut a promo about how he’s never been IWC Tag Team Champion and he wants the IWC Triple Crown. He said his mystery partner is still on his way and the Fraternity come out to gloat. They jump McChessney and the match starts off as a handicap match. The in-ring stuff here is fine I guess, nothing that blew me away. Eventually Asylum, who has been out of action due to a torn bicep, made his return as McChessney’s partner. It wasn’t long before the Fraternity got themselves counted out intentionally and walked away with the belts. John McChessney’s chase for the IWC Triple Crown certainly isn’t over though. He challenged the Fraternity to find a partner to tag up against him, Asylum, and Britt Baker. Uhm, okay. Not sure why but that is a thing. This whole segment was pretty skippable and definitely beats Palace/Gresham for weakest match on the card.

IWC Heavyweight Championship Match: DJ Z (c) vs. Dylan Bostic

I like Dylan Bostic and Ray Lyn’s act. Being billed as “the Justin Bieber of Professional Wrestling” loses relevancy by the year but that doesn’t mean the whole shtick doesn’t work. I love to hate watching those two disgustingly swap spit, like I loved to hate Edge and Lita in ’06 and even Miz and Maryse today. DJ Z is an underrated guy so I expected this to be a hoot but that’s not the case, sadly. This isn’t an actively bad match or anything, it’s just a match. The in-ring stuff is okay but it felt like it could have been kicked up a notch or two. The crowd must have felt the same way about this too because they were dead for the most part. They finally woke up when DJ Z dove onto Bostic, Lyn and security. After that we got a testicular claw, which is always fun and worth noting. DJ Z retains after a roll through jumping DDT from the second rope. I had higher hopes for this, it just ended up being pretty average.

After the match, Bostic got on the mic and demanded that Justin Plummer give him a rematch. Plummer came out and told him that’s not how thinks worked in IWC and that he was going to have to earn his way back to the top. Jimmy Demarco took the mic and told Bostic it’s gonna be them one on one on July 23. If Bostic wins, he gets DJ Z. If DeMarco wins, he gets Ray Lyn. Oh boy. Wardlow and Justin LaBar rushed the ring and jumped DeMarco. Dylan Bostic has joined Team LaBar, holy shit. This rules. Bulk Nasty made the save for DeMarco.

Super Indy 15 Final: Josh Alexander vs. Jonathan Gresham

It’s only fitting that Alexander and Gresham meet in the finals of this tournament. Gresham has already won CZW’s Best of the Best this year and Alexander has already won AIW’S JLIT. Having already won two of the biggest independent wrestling tournaments in this region, they go to war for another. Early on, both wrestlers give us a taste of how they can take over this match. As you could probably guess, Alexander was with brute strenght and power and Gresham was with speed and mat skills. This thing spilled to the crowd early and the brawling was pretty solid. Gresham dove from the top rope, over the guard rail, and into the crowd. Then they exchanged chops on the bleachers, all that good stuff. One of my favorite spots in the whole tournament was when Alexander caught Gresham in a moonault on spinning tombstoned him on the floor. It really felt like these two scouted each other all night, because stuff they were using all night wasn’t working here. They used some pretty cool fake-out stuff to get around that. Stuff like that is really important in a tournament final, incorporating moves from earlier rounds into the story. After a hot finishing stretch, Alexander put Gresham away with a spinning tombstone to win Super Indy 15 and become new Super Indy champion. There was a big match feel to this and this was a great match. Totally delivered. I would recommend this match to anyone, it’s worth checking out.

Overall Thoughts:

This was a really good show, bottom line. This was the best show I’ve seen from IWC yet. All of the tournament matches delivered and are worth a watch. The tag titles match is totally skippable. The IWC title match is a little dull and kind of just there but it is worth checking out for the storyline stuff after the match. I’d say Bostic/DJ Z under-delivering is the only thing that puts this short of being a low-end SOTYC. Josh Alexander was just completely awesome on this card, and is just adding to his fantastic comeback run in 2016. I didn’t know who he was before his coming out of retirement, but now he’s one of my favorite wrestlers on the independents. I’m incredibly sad that IWC is running Josh Alexander vs. Raymond Rowe less than an hour from me at Wipeout on July 23rd and I can’t make it. The good news is it’s because I’ll be at AAW. So, you can expect a live experience review for that, and then a review of Wipeout whenever it drops on Smart Mark. Anyways, WATCH THIS SHOW. Great job with Super Indy this year, IWC. Until next time, folks.

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