From My Perspective: Stroke Ain’t No Joke

By Patrick Brandmeyer

Now, as promised, a special comment about Saturday’s Dynamo Pro Wrestling show at The Sports Academy in Glen Carbon, Illinois, aka “Stroke Ain’t No Joke”.

“TNT” Keny G (previously the promoter of High Voltage Wrestling) suffered a stroke not too long ago and wanted to put on a benefit event to raise stroke awareness. Several local media outlets did interviews with Dynamo representatives to promote the event. As a result, attendance was definitely better than your average Glen Carbon card.

Not much was announced ahead of time other than Santana “Brittany” Garrett vs. Jordynne Grace and Ricky Cruz vs. Pablo Marquez (one of his old trainers). As it turned out, Marquez had to cancel due to a family emergency so the match was changed to a Cruz-Jake Dirden rematch.

Your ring announcers were Luke Roberts & Chris Roedel, your referees were Patrick Hook, Keith Smith Jr., and Michael Crase.

Executive Director Mark Bland introduced the event and brought out Keny G to speak on his recent experiences…I’ve seen several friends and relatives go through health issues in recent times so I know how important it is to be aware of these things.

Rocket Mapache vs. Danny Adams vs. “Elegant Assassin” Pierre Abernathy vs. Paco Gonzalez vs. Ballistic Brent Myers vs. Jackal: Adams and Gonzalez are trainees of new Ring of Honor Champion Michael Elgin; they made their debuts in the pre-show match at the recent ROH event in Collinsville. Myers has appeared a few times for SICW and this was his Dynamo debut. Pierre was one of a few representatives from St. Louis Anarchy on the card; he prefers to handle behind-the-scenes matters at SLA but occasionally wrestles for other groups. There were a few style clashes in this one to say the least, it had its fun moments (including some early comedy between Mapache and Pierre). Jackal pinned Myers after the Killswitch #2 in 7:00; Myers was up a bit quickly after the finisher, thinking that he’d won…no dice.

The Bumrush Brothers (“The Don Mega” Shorty Biggs & Outtkast) vs. The Viking War Party (“The American Viking” Alexandre Rudolph & “The Littlest Viking” Jake Parnell): This was presumably to establish the next challengers for The Black Hand Warriors’ Tag Team Titles. That would be pending another appearance by our esteemed champions…Michael Magnuson & David DeLorean have been tough to flag down for title defenses since WLW (where they ALSO hold tag team gold) has been a lot busier as of late. Oddly, I haven’t seen Rudolph and Parnell team up THAT often in this area (though they’ve held tag team gold in other Illinois promotions)…Parnell’s “Littlest Viking” styling seems to fit better when he’s hanging out with Rudolph. The BRBs were crowd favorites. Parnell got the pin on Outtkast in 12:00 after a combo move where Rudolph did a powerbomb as Parnell jumped off the top rope with a flying backcracker…ouchie.

“Showtime” Bradley Charles vs. “The Alternative” Brandon Gallagher: Gallagher’s a more established rule-breaker in Dynamo so SBC was the crowd favorite by process of elimination. Solid matchup. SBC won with a TKO cutter in 7:10.

Santana “Brittany” Garrett vs. Jordynne Grace: Karl Lauer from the Cauliflower Alley Club introduced Brittany, who recently received the “Future Legend” award from the CAC. Previous recipients of that award include: Trevor Murdoch, Takeshi Morishima, Frankie Kazarian, Cheerleader Melissa, “Superstar” Steve Fender, Chris Benoit, and Kurt Angle. Grace has been making a name for herself in IWA Mid-South in recent months, including a bout with LuFisto at their Queen of The Deathmatches event. Santana/Brittany had her first few matches in the St. Louis area with her father Keny’s High Voltage Wrestling…she eventually moved to Florida and has been competing in that area. Her resume includes appearances for the SHIMMER and SHINE promotions; she made a handful of appearances with TNA a few years ago alongside Orlando Jordan, then wrestled on last year’s Knockouts Knockdown PPV. Of course, she has become a regular member of the TNA roster under the name “Brittany” and is currently feuding with Madison Rayne. Despite her recent crowd receptions on Impact, she was the fan favorite in this match against Jordynne. I thought they matched pretty well together; Santana/Brittany won with the Shining Star Press in 6:42.

After intermission, Mark Bland announced Pablo Marquez’s absence and said he was looking for someone to “deal with” Ricky Cruz. That brought out manager Travis Cook for his only appearance of the night (none of his regular proteges were in the house)…Cook said that he had taken up a collection with his compatriots to pay the fine for Ricky’s actions at the last Stratford Inn event. Their line of thinking: It was a no-DQ match, so how can you punish someone for “breaking rules” in a match with no rules? However, the conversation gave Bland the idea to book a rematch between Cruz and Dirden for the main event…that’ll do.

“Walking Reality” Dan Walsh vs. Davey Vega vs. Steven Kennedy vs. Mike Outlaw for the HVW Livewire Title: For reference: Walsh won the belt in question at a Dynamo card on October 16, 2010. HVW’s last show was on April 30, 2011 and Walsh didn’t defend the title (he was in a battle royal)…so this was technically his first title defense! I had been thinking that Dynamo has enough people on the roster for a secondary singles title, whether it be a Light Heavyweight Title or something else…I imagine the Livewire Title was brought out of the mothballs just for this event since it was Keny G’s event. Thankfully the title is under the 1,370-day rule so he just barely avoided being stripped of the championship. Outlaw accounted himself well with three more experienced competitors…he’s done well in his first few outings. Vega hadn’t competed for Dynamo since holding the NWA Missouri Title. Walsh won with a new finisher (some kind of shoulder-breaker) in 8:16, continuing his near-five-year reign as HVW Livewire Champion (bwahahaha).

The Kansas City Killers (“The Rebel” Jeremy Wyatt & “The Fittest Wrestler On Earth” Mark Sterling) vs. “The Yoga Monster” Mike Sydal & Brandon Aarons for the Pro Wrestling Phoenix Tag Team Titles: PWP is an Iowa promotion; the KC crew regularly travels to Iowa to compete for 3XW and other groups. Sydal & Aarons are no strangers to each other…in fact, they held the LWA Tag Team Titles in 2010 after upsetting The Hooligans. The crowd seemed a bit down for this one…I keep trying to figure out the crowd energy at the Glen Carbon shows and have yet to come up with a good explanation.  More open space in the venue than usual? I’m sure individual onlookers have their own opinions. Fine matchup, at any rate; Sterling speared Sydal, Wyatt dropped an elbow from the top rope, and Sterling got the pin in 10:55.

Billy McNeil vs. Gary Jay: Gary wore his “Gerald James” ring attire despite going by his regular ring name here. While these two have competed for the same promotions in the past, I honestly don’t think they’d ever faced each other one-on-one. This match dragged the fans kicking and screaming back in, so good for them. McNeil’s Spiral Tap variant hit raised knees and Gary finished with the Michinoku Driver in 13:18.

Battle Royal: You can go to the results page for the full list of battle royal participants. Several people had double duty with a few extra names, including new Dynamo trainee Sir Isaac. I didn’t know anything about the larger gentleman named Jonah Turk…from what I gather, he’s from Springfield, Missouri. The battle royal also featured a rare appearance by the elusive Armchair Luchador (last seen by yours truly at a Rampage Championship Wrestling card in May of 2009). For some reason, referee Patrick Hook entered the battle royal…and for some OTHER reason, he was thrown out of the ring by fellow official Keith Smith Jr.! I didn’t take down the exact order of eliminations…Turk was out first, but battles royal are tough to follow in general. It came down to a confrontation between recent rivals Walsh and Gallagher…Gallagher managed to eliminate Walsh, but he forgot about Steven Kennedy who dropkicked him out of the ring from behind to get the victory (no time announced).

“Dirdey” Jake Dirden & The Bumrush Brothers vs. Heavyweight Champion “The King of Chaos” Ricky Cruz & The Kansas City Killers: The scheduled Cruz-Dirden match never even got started as the two brawled around the ringside area for several minutes…then when they nearly made it into the ring, Wyatt & Sterling attacked Dirden to create a three-on-one situation. Shorty & Outtkast ran out to help and Mark Bland ordered a six-man tag match…okay then. Things remained unsettled between Cruz and Dirden…we already had a no-DQ match between them and that wasn’t enough to resolve the feud, so what’s next? At any rate, an Outtkast Samoan Drop/Shorty flying boot combo led to Shorty pinning Sterling for the win in 13:33.  So there you have it.

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