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G. Badger

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About G. Badger

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    Viceroy of Catlandia

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    In my chair, digging Yukon Eric vs Hans Schmidt in Chicago circa '58

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  1. G. Badger

    [1985-05-19-AJPW] British Bulldogs vs Tiger Mask II & Masa Fuchi

    This was joined in progress. I'm guessing not too much was cut out as they did about 9 minutes of full speed ahead wrestling. My gripe is that no one really sold too much BUT as a TV show episode this wasn't totally necessary. They made an impression and it was a darn good one. A side note: Misawa and Davey Boy did not really wrestle each other for more than a few moments. I would have to think this was a communication issue. Fuchi, I'm sure, knew English from his Memphis time to work with Davey. Misawa not so much...it's a guess but, seems logical. Glad that I watched this!!
  2. G. Badger

    [1991-12-29-WCW-Starrcade] Battlebowl

    If you're watching the full match, once the introductions are done, fast forward to when Ricky (Richard to you) Morton and Liger are in ring #2. You can tell that they agreed to say 'Fuck it' and put on a junior fireworks display for 30 seconds before eliminating themselves. Then, we get everyone else making their way over to ring #2. Luger vs Vader remained in ring #1 and this was getting good. The process of getting to the second ring was good in theory but, in reality it was clumsy as a college kid at a kegger. Many of the wrestlers just willfully eliminated themselves to the second ring to spare themselves and fans from the awkwardness. Business really started when it was Steamboat and Sting vs Austin and Rude (with Luger in waiting). This part was very good but, as a whole I can't say the same. It was fun but, there was too much going on that looked crappy like most Battle Royals. Perhaps they could've gone down to 14 guys instead of 20...
  3. G. Badger

    [1996-12-29-WCW-Starrcade '96] Hulk Hogan vs Roddy Piper

    I'm with Tim on this match. It's good action, the guys told the story really well, and despite the finish being muddled by the crazed fan, it ended on a high note! It felt like an early 80's big non title grudge match. It wasn't the cleanest work but, damn, it was intense, they kept the fans into it and felt like a meaningful victory for Piper and WCW. Good match and glad I saw it!
  4. G. Badger

    [1998-12-27-WCW-Starrcade '98] Goldberg vs Kevin Nash

    I was a big fan of both Goldie and Big Sexay at the time so, I was hoping this was going to be a great match...at least in clip form on Nitro I was so bummed to see that the streak was over and Nash had to cheat to do it. BUT I was ok since Hall had to tazer/cattle prod Goldberg. Tazers were a relatively new thing and had an air of danger to them so, if the Wolfpac had to essentially electrocute Goldberg to beat him, then damn Goldberg really is a beast. Again, I didn't see the whole match let alone the PPV so, it worked. Seeing this in full 20+ years later...yeah it was good. Neither is a fantastic worker but, they played their part and did some good moves. It actually was a substantial match (which was rare to see from either coming from a WCW tv -only watcher) so, I'm happy
  5. Its rather amazing to see four true superstars go at it in the ring. Honestly this is a dream match you'd have on a video game because you'd never see the footage. Match-wise- It was fun! Andre was the real focus as the unpinnable monster. Good moves for the time, solid action, nothing to hate here plus, the star power makes it that much more exciting!
  6. Let's take the way back machine to 2014! Ring of Honor in Cincinnati (07/18/14) reDRagon vs Rocky Romero & Tomasso Ciampa: Koslov is injured so Nigel says Rocky has a replacement in the Sicilian Psychopath - nice! DRagon is pissed and rightfully so as the slap dash team takes the early advantage. Fish and O'Reilly eventually get control and unleash the 2 Man Smash Machine ™. Nevertheless, they can quite seem to get a handle on Ciampa and neither can Romero! This was a very good opener. It went a smidge longer than I like a first match to go but, I think they wanted to wow the crowd since there was a lineup change. Mission accomplished! Romantic Touch vs Jay Lethal: I gotta give this match some words because Jay Lethal was one of my MVPs of 2018. This started off fun but, was way too long. Nigel mentioned that Matt Bennett was out due to illness so, I think these early matches had to buy some time while they reorganized. BJ Whitmer, Jimmy Jacobs and Adam Page vs Cedric Alexander, Caprice Coleman and ACH: Very good, all action 6 man match. Coleman and Page were my faves. Kevin Steen vs Silas Young - No DQ: The penultimate Steen in ROH ma was a hardcore battle! Both guys are tough as leather and beat the brains outta each other. Kill Steen Kill is my favorite iteration of the French Canadian. Very good match with tons of chairs, trash cans etc. Ethan Gabriel Owens (Ethan Page) vs RD Evans vs Moose vs Matt Taven: Veda Scott is there and she's a total babe. Matt Taven is a guy who really impressed me with the matches I watched in 2018 but, those two things were not enough to keep me interested. Skipped this one. War Machine (Hanson & Rowe) vs The Briscoes: A very good physical match as the brothers are a little out-matched. We don't have a clear resolution as Cole & Lethal come out to spoil it...but then, Kaz & Daniels are out... Jay Lethal & Adam Cole vs Kazarian & Christopher Daniels: This was a fast paced jr. tag style match that had some storyline consequences...and we do get a pinfall. A very good match! Then, the original two teams come back out and damn, this was a great segment (starting with the War Machine vs Briscoes). It reminded me of how ECW would book tag matches. They were more organic fights between groups rather than just two teams squaring off for the belts. Main event time! Michael Elgin vs Roderick Strong: This one is for the World title. This was everything you could hope for! Roddy was hitting Big Mike as hard as he could and Elgin responded in kind! I was so glad to see he was in battle mode rather than, fan pleasing test of strength mode. He reminded me if late 90's Kobashi. Strong gets straight vicious and the champ is doing all he can to survive. Not only was this a hard hitting affair but, there were surprises and twists too. The Cincy crowd gets a ROH World title classic. I loved it! This was a great show and so glad I picked the DVD up. If you can, I'd highly recommend getting this show...at the least check out the title fight. Thanks for reading!
  7. It is June and by gawd it's the half way point of the year!?? Really? It was snowflakes and salt stains just yesterday! That being said, I want to do my Best Match Watched and other assorted superlatives for the first part of 2019. It helps you but, more importantly, it helps me! Best Match Watched: -Daniel Bryan vs CM Punk - Money In the Bank (2012): This not a classic match but, one of the handful of WWE matches that I've watched this year that I thought was great. -Michael Elgin vs Roderick Strong - ROH Summer Heat Tour (Cincinnati 2014): The full show review is coming up here soon (I watched it over Winter - sue me!) but, this was a classic ROH title fight. -Zack Sabre Jr. vs Tomohiro Ishii - Wrestle Kingdom 13 (2019): Inoki Strong Style lives! Loved it! Great match at least but, a near classic to me. -Jeff Cobb vs Ricochet - PWG Battle of Los Angeles (2016): Not a classic but, a great match! 12-14 minute barn burner and a match lost in an ill fated winter watching project. Ricochet vs a big dude is always gold. He can let loose with his strikes, can bump like a super ball, and his crazy death-defying moves really, truly look like Hail Mary spots. -AKIRA vs Kenny Omega - NJPW Best of the Super Jrs. (2010): Another 'not a classic but great match.' AKIRA decided to go all limb work psychologist here and it was friggin' brilliant. -Prince Devitt vs Gedo - NJPW Best of the Super Jrs. (2010): Simple match layout but, the swearing/intensity of this match was lights out awesome. -Finlay vs TAJIRI - Smash - Final Show (2012): A near classic emotional and physically punishing bout. Fans of either guys need to watch this! -Wahoo McDaniel vs Greg Valentine - JCP (1977): Near classic hard hitting bout and angle. -Rick Martel vs Nick Bockwinkel - AWA (1984): The in-ring work, the story, this is a classic. **Frankly, everything from the Wahoo, Martel and more blog post could be on here but, those are the top two to me!** -Hans Schmidt vs Yukon Eric - Chicago Wrestling (circa 1958): Simple, brutal wrestling - the ropes break, part of the ring breaks. Classic shit. Best Wrestler: Wahoo or Martel at this point. Different opponents and different situations and both brought intensity and passion to every encounter. Biggest Surprise: Right now it's that I'm watching US wrestling more than Japanese wrestling That's not to say the drama and intensity is that much different than puro but, it's probably been a decade since my US wrestling has outweighed my Japanese wrestling. Biggest Disappointment: Ha! Probably the fact that I can't get big projects started and can't seem to finish up ones that are 85% done. But damn, I'm amped that I've gotten the good wrestling in that I have! Thanks for reading! More good stuff to come!
  8. G. Badger

    [1960-05-14-Akron, OH] Fritz Von Erich vs Yukon Eric

    A pretty darn good match with Fritz over powered by Yukon. Of course, cheating isn't beneath the "German" so, its a pretty even and heated contest. Yukon gets color which the announcer kinda pinpoints inadvertently by remarking 'Yukon's looking under the ring for something.' I suppose that would explain what he was doing BUT its B&W and far away so, we really can't tell he's under there to begin with! Nothing in this clip would indicate that the match actually took place in Akron which was a little disappointing. There's not much old footage of wrestling from northeast Ohio so, I was hoping the announcer would say what the venue was or mention something relevant. The YT poster gives no reference why this is wrestling from Akron, OH either. Another youtuber has the same match with lesser quality. Research shows they have pretty good knowledge of older wrestling via a link to their blog. They do put this as most likely Pedro Martinez ' Buffalo territory which included Akron as well as Cleveland where they did TV tapings per an interview with Martinez' son. http://www.kayfabememories.com/Regions/pittsbuffclev/pitts12.htm No confirmation but, very likely Northeast Ohio
  9. G. Badger

    Zine Review!? - Wrestle Void

    I need some kind of format or guide to help me talk about this 'zine 'Wrestle Void.' A blog is in the same vein as a 'zine, right? Its me talking about things I find interesting. What interests me with Wrestle Void? So, I suppose that's my hook with this little publication, right?! Let us begin... This is a really fun rag to read -Straight and simple! The letters from the editors/co-founders at the start of each issue are a reminder that we as fans are real people. Gravy's letters especially drive this point home. Wrestling fandom is something we participate in to escape life sometimes but, it is something we use to deal with life as well. In other words, we use pro wrestling as a diversion but, use it as a tool to cope and combat hardships. The performances in and outside the ring are fun but, provide many of us an example of how to deal with loss, how to persevere, how to recognize and overcome our weaknesses, etc. If this wasn't true, the stories of matches and angles would not resonate with us. In additional to these letters or prefaces to the zine are other testimonials by contributors on what wrestling means to them. Many of these deal with the authors coming to terms with their love of wrestling as the enter the adulthood. I find it refreshing to read how others are dealing with this. I really enjoyed Marj's take on how she thought she'd "grow out of it." I'm sure most of us had thought that at one point or another, right? Then, there is usually a local Cleveland scene piece. This is AIW (which I'm pissed that I haven't been to) and has featured Magnum CK Parsons and PB Smooth. I've never heard of either guy until reading but, damn I feel like I'm missing out. I think this local focus is something special and hope they keep this as a featured part of their publication. Next, there is a what I'll call general wrestling talk. Meat and potato opinions/review stuff that we know and love: top 25 wrestlers of 2018, BJW show review and a take on the All-In event. Co-Editor/Creator El Jordano Diablo handles this duty quite well with help from contributors. Issue #3 features more humorous stuff like 'The Struggle of a Fat Fan" by Rev. Jess Smith and Hobo Chef's (Gravy's) Wrestlemania watch party menu - "served with a side of Adam Coleslaw - Baybay!":D The humorous bits in issue #3 are really something I hope they continue! Finally, near and dear to my heart, there is the art! Awesome drawings and collages are there to keep the eye moving from one article to the next but, also to remind you that this pamphlet is a work of love. For instance, Issue #2's centerfold of Marj's "Fight Like a Girl" piece features a simple slightly anime inspired 'poster' of the WWE's modern era of great women wrestlers. I was psyched see Bull Nakano on there! Hells yeah I think graphic art is the one thing that sets an actual publication apart from online content. This is from someone who had a zine all through college and is doing this blog (duh). As an artist, I would love to be able to put all of my wacky ass wrestling drawings up here but, the medium doesn't allow for it in a palpable way. So, kudos to them for doing it right! All that being said, I cannot say that I have the same views, opinions, and taste in wrestling. Wrestle Void does NOT match my viewing habits nor opinion of contemporary pro-wrestling. Nevertheless, I endorse and support their growth! This is a substantive small press publication that promotes the love of pro wrestling. These men and women want to get folks excited about wrestling. Not only that, they want to turn folks on to the awesomeness that is non WWE wrestling (sports entertainment?) whether it be independent or international. I gotta support that shit! I hope you do too! Note: I reviewed issues # 2-4. Looks like 50 copies total per printing/issue. Nice color stock paper cover with art, B&W interior. Costs a few bucks but, how much do you spend on coffee or beer a week? All of the folks contact and social media stuff is in the mag but, I'll say for FB and Twitter look 'em up with @wrestlevoid Thanks for reading!
  10. G. Badger

    Wahoo McDaniel, Rick Martel and more!

    Watched Hans Schmidt vs Yukon Eric (1958? per CFA site, Chicago) and holy crap! This was awesome. It's simple brutality along with Yukon Eric's barrel chest reminded me of BJW Strong Style. Slams where they are trying to throw their opponent through the mat, chest caving punches, the Chicago Film Association even says, "One of the more brutal matches with the ropes being torn down and much audience yelling and throwing of objects into the ring."..this was classic stuff. Edit: It appears that there are two different Schmidt vs Yukon Eric Chicago matches by the CFA. They have film identifiers and there seems to be a goof. The classic match from above carries the (YouTube) id# F.2008-04-0207 However, there is no record of this id# on the CFA site. BUT there is a record of another encounter on YouTube with the id# is F.2008-04-0111. A search for this on CFA provides details on my reviewed match. I can verify this because their provided match run down and finish corresponds with what I saw. So, we can assert that the circa date is accurate. This mystery match has a different finish (I skipped to the end for proof) and essentially has no details per the CFA. A search for Yukon Eric and Hans Schmidt show they have one encounter BUT clearly there are two. So, I think the CFA folks may have thought they were the same bout at some point and deleted the record. And perhaps swapped id# !? But thankfully the footage remains! You know that I gotta watch the other match now Update: The YouTube id#s are correct since they have a title screen that matches what is listed in the description. So the CFA website #s are wrong. Still, there's a mystery match between Eric and Hans. I watched that match and man, it was great. Not as brutal but, its still full of stiff shots and slams. The finish was quite emphatic. Hans unleashed a series of stiff drop kicks to put Yukon down. Awesome!
  11. Many of these matches I have commented on in the Everything Else match archives or the Yearbooks, if you will. I wanted to make a record of them all in one place here on my blog though. If you have similar wrestling tastes or just like to read what I have to say, I thought I would make one entry of my recent wrestling habits. It's pretty 1970's and 80's heavy but, we dip our toes into the 60's and 90's as you'll read shortly. Let's start with a doozy! Johnny Valentine vs Bull Curry (06/20/69 Houston Wrestling):This really is an awesome match and the first time I've seen a full Johnny Valentine bout. He and Bull Curry beat each other senseless here...and I loved it! It was really great, simple yet violent pro wrestling. The quality of the footage is excellent as well. So very glad I watched this! In writing this, I did not put a rating but, at the very least it is a great match. The same goes for Johnny Valentine vs Bill Frazier '62. Ric Flair vs Wahoo McDaniel (1976 Mid Altlantic): This is probably one of the few 70's Wahoo matches vs Flair on YouTube. Like Cornette mentions, his physique, stamina, and agility are much greater than in 1980's. He looks like an absolute beast here. There's no finish unfortunately but, the 8+ minutes are great. Wahoo McDaniel vs Greg Valentine (09/07/77 JCP): Just a fantastic match where Greg takes the place of his dad. And Wahoo is cool with that since he beats the crap outta him. Gregster is no bum as he can take a shot as good as he can dish it out. This is just hard hitting no nonsense wrestling and it's hard not to love it. This was a near classic match. Plus look for promo of Wahoo at home, in a cast, calling out Greg Valentine & Ric Flair. Harley Race vs Wahoo McDaniel (02/10/78 Houston Wrestling):This was great 2/3 falls match.I waited a while to watch this since I'm lukewarm on Harley but, this was a doozy. Wahoo just tees off on the champion and Race's bumps are fantastic. Of course his headbutts and knee drops look vicious as ever. Do watch for the fan wildin' out in the front row on the camera side of the ring. He's the guy the fuzz have to grab in fall #3. It's pretty awesome. If you like to people watch the crowd during matches then, you gotta watch this one. It is a bit of a distraction since it takes like 5 officers get escort the dude but, Wahoo and Race don't let it phase them. Loved the finish! The Chief almost had it!! So close! Great stuff Wahoo McDaniel vs Tully Blanchard - Indian Strap Match (05/14/82 Houston Wrestling): This wasn't a long drawn out match. It was simple and vicious. I especially loved the finish (no pins or submissions, one man must drag his opponent to all 4 corners of the ring and touch the turnbuckle). We really need more matches like this in contemporary wrestling. It emphasizes the rough and tumble violence that I think is lacking in wrestling nowadays. Sure there are street fight and other gimmick matches but, there's too much emphasis on spots and not enough on the intensity. The violence of these type of fights should be at the forefront. We certainly have that here. Very good stuff! Bruiser Brody vs Mongolian Stomper (06/04/82 Houston Wrestling): Pure pandemonium with both guys trying to clobber each other. Brody vs the Stomper truly delivered despite not being very long. This was very much in the same vein as the 1990 FMW stuff. Walloping the heck outta each other but, never backing down...Houston looked like Korakuen Hall. Rick Martel vs Nick Bockwinkel 09/20/84 AWA): I thought the match up looked good but, no idea that there was such praise from the PWO community. I was just thinking "damn this is really good. They've got plans of attack, they're selling the specific damages as well as the overall fatigue. Still, its a heated fight with guys trading great blows and kicking out because the belt is on the line." I think for '84, you could call this a work-rate match but, its deeper than that. The in ring story is so solid and to have it almost spoiled at the end..oh man. Martel whipping the AWA strap around like a wild man at the end just capped off this beauty of a match. Classic stuff! Masa Saito vs Curt Hennig (03/28/85 AWA): What a simple but great match. Curt was very young here but, he and Saito had a little program going. It was pretty basic in that Saito roughed up Hennig and he made a energetic come back only to get shutdown. Maybe its just me but, I prefer 80's AWA Curt to Mr. Perfect. Anyhow, Curt does a fucking tope to the concrete instead of the leaping shoulder miss to ring post spot. That's to say he missed 85% of the ringpost and went thru the ropes to free fall and cement! Awesome!! The best was the finish were Saito and Hennig were just smashing each other with punches. More importantly, Masa Saito was punching Hennig...because there were some nice "punches" earlier but, Saito was like, " let's do this proper! " Yes, please, thank you! Rick Martel vs Mr Saito (04/24/85 AWA): Oh boy, this is a great match. Saito is an absolute beast and Rick Martel is just trying to survive. The part where he is clawing his way to the ropes to escape the Scorpion Deathlock is a new iconic wrestling moment for me. Just brilliant! I think this would be an awesome place to start if you only remember Martel as "The Model" from WWF. Rick Martel vs Terry Gordy (10/03/85 Pro Wrestling USA): Rick Martel is certainly a fighting champion and this fast paced challenge from Gordy is proof. This just checked all of the right boxes in the move and storytelling department for me. The other Freebirds are sent to the back and Terry is OK with that. He's going to beat the champion fair and square. Gordy is matching Martel all throughout but, then brings the power based offense to the table. It looks to be too much with the champ taking some hard slams. Don't count Martel out of the match yet! I just loved this 15 minute match. It truly felt like a title fight. Great stuff Ric Flair vs Ron Garvin (02/07/86-JCP-Superstars on the Superstation): Well, these two really beat each other from pillar to post! So many hard chops that it really is a wonder that their chests weren't red. Oh and the punches and slams...man, this was a heck of an intense TV televised match. 15 minutes of fighting, I loved it. People have said Garvin wasn't selling but, in his role, I think he should have been ferocious. He was taking the fight to Flair. A very good to great match in my eyes. Quite glad that I stumbled upon it. Rick Martel vs Riki Choshu (12/03/86 AJPW): This started out with a lightning pace. Then, they settled down into working over each others legs which was ferocious. I so wish they sold this after the fact since it appeared they were really going to town but, it was a 10 min. match. Evenly fought but a little to soon to finish for me. Very good, intense match. Totally worth watching! Just not the heavenly dream battle I hoped for. But the first few minutes had me believing it was real! Wahoo McDaniel vs Manny Fernandez (09/18/88 AWA):Just two big dudes punching and chopping the crap outta each other for 10 minutes. If you dig Tenryu - Choshu - Hashimoto type stuff check this out. It'd be right at home in '88 AJ or NJ. Wahoo McDaniel vs Manny Fernandez - Indian Strap Match (12/13/88 Superclash III): I think most folk remember the Kerry vs King match but, I think this bout deserves a bit of recognition. Stiff chops, punches and blood abound! The big surprise was that Tatsumi Fujinami was there! Fernandez was working in NJ in '88 I believe so, I think he was there to keep Manny in check or something. Well, he certainly DOES both at the start and finish...yes! Awesome little interview at the end from Wahoo where he says he wants to literally kill Fernandez. Larry Zbyszko vs Masa Saito (02/10/90 NJPW) I could tell that this was going to be a fantastic encounter from the very first collar-and-elbow! Oh man! Take note current wrestlers, THIS is how you tie up! The match was a fine example of how to create drama and excitement without running through moves. The holds were credible and meaningful towards the outcome of the fight. Their strikes were stiff yet, measured. Larry & Mr. Saito used their body language (and actual language in Lar's case) to convey athleticism, desperation, and that killer instinct. This was a great match. Nick Bockwinkel vs Masa Saito (12/26/90 NJPW): If you like headlock work then this is a match for you brother! I truly dug the simple focus on the headlock and leg locks becuase you felt the struggle was genuine. Man, two masters going at it for the NJ crowd. The finish came a little too quick but, dang this was a pretty good bout. QUICKIE BONUS: Rick Martel vs Naoki Sano (08/09/91 SWS): Roughly 5 minutes of pedal to the metal 80s technical junior offense. I loved it, it was short and to the point and put over the power of a technical pinning predicament. Thanks for reading!!! If I can get my act together, I should have a few posts ready to go in the next few days
  12. G. Badger

    [1986-09-20-WWC] Terry Funk vs Rick Martel

    This match was a lot of fun in a "playing to the crowd" type of way. A good portion of the bout was Funk acting tough only for Martel to foil him then, Funk running away. He'd then throw tantrums amongst the fans. He'd regroup and Rick would best him or outright embarrass Terry. Most of it was gaga as they say but, damn it worked for the crowd. It definitely was a bit too hammy for a US audience in '86. They over-acted (perhaps for the baseball stadium crowd or just because they were in Puerto Rico). So, it didn't really get good from an athletic or dramatic standpoint until the last few minutes.
  13. G. Badger

    [1985-04-24-AWA-Winnipeg, MB] Rick Martel vs Mr Saito

    Oh boy, this is a great match. Saito is an absolute beast and Rick Martel is just trying to survive. The part where he is clawing his way to the ropes to escape the Scorpion Deathlock is a new iconic wrestling moment for me. Just brilliant! Read Superstar's write-up above if you're on the fence about watching this. It really is that good.
  14. G. Badger

    [1985-10-03-Pro Wrestling USA] Rick Martel vs Terry Gordy

    Rick Martel is certainly a fighting champion and this fast paced challenge from Gordy is proof. This just checked all of the right boxes in the move and storytelling department for me. The other Freebirds are sent to the back and Terry is OK with that. He's going to beat the champion fair and square. Gordy is matching Martel all throughout but, then brings the power based offense to the table. It looks to be too much with the champ taking some hard slams. Don't count Martel out of the match yet! I just loved this 15 minute match. It truly felt like a title fight. Great stuff
  15. G. Badger

    Is TNA the worst wrestling promotion in history?

    Really enjoyed the Sting vs Angle match from Bound for Glory 2007. Most of that enjoyment came from the first 2/3rds. It was very good wrestling although it had a couple stumbles. Then Karen came out, then f-ing Nash, then the ref bumps, then the bat. Sting won so it made him look strong and made me OK with it all, I suppose. But, man there was no reason for all of that crap...I gotta think this was when Russo was on board. If they would have picked just one then, alright, I'm buying. But damn, they pulled out everything but the kitchen sink. Still, a fun match...but messy.