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[2008-09-27-Ted Petty Invitational] Sami Callihan vs Eddie Kingston

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Just watched this match this afternoon and I must say I wasn't used to see Sami Callihan in his pre-NXT run so that definitely felt weird for me at first. They seemed to play the underdog card with Callihan, hyping how much he worked hard to get the invite for the Ted Petty Invitational this year and building him to be a hungry young up-and-comer looking to build his stock. Kingston is well-known for his striking abilities and early in the match, he connects solidly with a backfist after Callihan slaps him, sending Callihan tumbling outside. That was a nasty tumble outside and I legit thought Callihan had knocked himself out during that bump. I'm not familiar with Callihan's early work but he definitely was able to hang with Kingston all match long, which is pretty telling to me. As far as I can remember, Kingston was doing some of his best work around that time and I was stunned to see Callihan get the win with the Lariat but in hindsight, I thought that the story conveyed by the commentary team (I believe Chuck Taylor was one of them, just not 100% sure) helped build Callihan as much as the match itself with Eddie Kingston. Very enjoyable match for me and I'd go with a 7/10 grade for this one.

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