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The Nomination Thread

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Matt Hardy

 

(First two reviews are mine, third is from Wrestling KO, but it's from Dylan so I figured that was good enough to count.)

 

1) World Wrestling Federation: No Mercy '99 (10-17-1999) Edge & Christian vs. New Brood (Jeff & Matt Hardy)

 

This is the finals of the Terri Invitational Tournament and a ladder match.

A spotfest if ever there was one, but an example of how to execute a great spotfest. Don’t get me wrong, there are a few spots where the set-up is too contrived, or I should say too obviously choreographed. There are also a few spots that are off, not blown, but just off. Still, those are the only real complaints I have with what is otherwise a wonderfully put together bit of spot wrestling.

I used to be one of those guys who would rail against spotfests. I’m still not the biggest fan of spotfests, but I’ve long moved away from the idea that a wrestling match must strictly be of a certain manner. This tag match is nothing but spots, although I would contend they are spots with meaning and import. This is a match where two young teams are willing to kill themselves for a sack of money (and the implication that they get to have sex with Terri). But more than that they are willing to destroy their bodies to break into the spotlight. This is their chance to show that they belong, and boy do Edge, Christian, and the New Brood show that they belong in the WWF.

The spots used by all four are inventive, if not ground breaking. That may sound like I’m contradicting myself, but when Jeff & Matt Hardy are hitting double teams they are being inventive while not trying to turn wrestling on its head. There’s an element of working within the natural confines of a wrestling match that I appreciate about this match. This isn’t a match where one team decides that executing a 450 Splash Spike Piledriver is super cool despite looking freaking ridiculous. Rather, this is a match where Christian and Jeff realize that a simple Hip Toss from near the top of the ladder will make for a brutal looking spot. Simple, effective, and inventive within the natural boundaries of a pro wrestling match; that’s what these two teams are able to bring forth on this night.

There were a couple of spots where I stopped and said, “Well, that doesn’t make much sense,” but for the most part I was too involved in the breakneck pace of the spots and the storytelling to care much about a few overly contrived spots. And that’s right, I did say storytelling because I do believe there is a story being told in this match. I touched on it earlier, but this tag match is the culmination of two young teams becoming stars. That is the story of the match; how willing four men are to punish themselves to entertain the crowd. What can I say, I was entertained by this match fifteen years ago and I was just as entertained watching it tonight.

2) Organization of Modern Extreme Grappling Arts: Chaos in Cameron (04-26-2014) Briscoe Brothers (Jay & Mark) vs. Hardy Boyz (Jeff & Matt)

The best thing that came out of Matt Hardy leaving World Wrestling Entertainment is that he’s been able to team with his brother again in their home promotion of OMEGA. All reports have indicated that their shows have been really hot and full of good stuff. When I heard that they had announced a main event for Chaos in Cameron of the Briscoe Brothers versus the Hardy Boyz I knew I needed to track down that match at the first opportunity. That opportunity has arisen, and the results were well worth the effort.

It’s important, I think at least, to note the chemistry that both teams have. This is tag team wrestling, and it shows in the match layout and in the story the match is telling. Matt & Jeff Hardy have been a team for years and the same is true for Jay & Mark Briscoe. All four men have had great singles careers as well, but there is something special about the abilities they possess as tag team units. There’s an extended section in the match where Matt is all on his own, but that segment exists to show how important teamwork is and how much better the Hardy Boyz are when working together.

The standout in this match was easily Jay Briscoe, and that’s in no way diminishing the fantastic work being done by all other involved parties. But Jay, my gosh, Jay is an absolute killer in this match. He brings forth a harsh brand of violence that is a joy to watch. There’s one particular moment where he just about kills Matt dead with a Lariat, and all I could do was stare in wide eyed admiration at the screen. When he starts working with his brother, well jeez, they seem to make it their mission to not just beat the Hardys, but to bury them.

There is a lot of extracurricular happenings in this match, but surprisingly they work. The injury to Jeff could have been cheesy, but it ends up doing wonders for the match because of how great Matt is during his extended face in peril segment. Jeff’s injury also works because of when he makes an appearance as Willow. He runs in, complete with umbrella, but his run-in doesn’t lead to a win. All it leads to is another beatdown segment on Matt. Willow can’t win the match, Matt alone can’t win the match, only the Hardys or Briscoes as a unit will win the match.

The finishing run is, I’d wager, up there with the best tag team wrestling has had to offer in recent years. The story comes to a head as both teams employ plenty of double team moves and shenanigans, and at a breakneck pace to boot. The finishing run is interesting in that it moves very fast, but it lasts long enough so that the match feels like it has the time to languidly exhale. The spot where Jay holds down Matt, who is struggling mightily, for a brutal Mark Diving Elbow Drop is stellar. The nearfalls are great, and the actual finish completes the story and is mighty nifty as it requires resourcefulness from Matt and Jeff while they manage to work as a team despite being on opposite sides of the ring.

I’m a big Hardy Boyz fan, Matt more than Jeff, I’ve never denied that fact. My fandom isn’t creating falsities in the case of this match, I can assure my readers of that much. The Briscoe Brothers versus the Hardy Boyz is a really great match. It’s tag team wrestling that hearkens back to the tag team wrestling of the 1980s in the best way possible. All four men give great performances, don’t sleep on this match people.

3) The Briscoes vs. Mike Bennett & Matt Hardy - ROH 6/22

Yeah this was great for what it was. When I read the reviews of this I figured it would be great and actually was able to track it down earlier today (sorry Bucky, but hey at least you got motivated to watch it!). I like all of these guys, and figured it was going to be an insane car crash, and that's exactly what it was. Mark Briscoe was amazing in this. Jay is the guy who gets the singles pushes, and I get why, but Mark as this freak show, ball of energy, who takes lunatic bumps, and spot runs better than anyone in wrestling, is an absolutely perfect fit. I actually liked the whole restart angle to this, and for a spotfests they did a great job making all the big spots feel distinct. Bennett taking the Doomsday Devince on the floor was psychotic, the crash and burn table spot was well teased and well delivered, Mark's Cactus Elbow was great et. I also though Mark Bennett hitting Mark with a Side Effect on the floor was a pretty crazy spot, but in a match this nuts it is well down the depth chart of crazy shit. Finishing bump from Hardy was completely insane for a guy his age. Even the Nick Seary shit added to this. Really fucking fun match.

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Chris Hero

 

VS. AJ Styles 3/22/14

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/26098-chris-hero-vs-aj-styles-roh-032214/?hl=%2Bchris+%2Bhero

 

CZW vs. ROH Cage of Death

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/21790-samoa-joe-adam-pearce-bj-whitmer-ace-steel-homicide-vs-chris-hero-claudio-castagnoli-necro-butcher-nate-webb-eddie-kingston-roh-death-before-dishonor-iv-071506-cage-of-death/?hl=%2Bchris+%2Bhero

 

CM Punk vs Colt Cabana vs Chris Hero - Winter Wars 2001


Been a while since I saw this, but I remember loving it. Starts with a heel Punk saying Fuck You to the fans and "leaving". This leads to Colt and Hero going to the mat with each other and the doing the whole "good clean wrestling match" stuff with both men being respectful. Punk eventually returns when they both seem down, but it backfires and they end up double teaming him. What seems like standard triple threat formula is turned up a notch when steel chairs are introduced and both Hero and Colt ram Punk HEAD FIRST, unprotected, into chairs in the corner. They absolutely beat the fuck out of him before inevitably turning on each other before going into a finishing stretch with alot of close nearfalls and a hell of a finish. I havent seen a hell of a lot of IWA, but this would be my favourite match from what I've seen of them. After the match Punk owns some idiot fan with the infamous "I'm not holding a mic you stupid bitch" line.

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Didn't see him in the list of official nominees so I figured I'd be the one to go ahead and nominate the elephant in the room,

 

Chris Benoit

 

1) Chris Benoit vs Al Snow (ECW Double Tables 02/04/95)

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/14370-chris-benoit-vs-al-snow-ecw-double-tables-020495/

 

2) Wild Pegasus vs Great Sasuke (NJPW Super J Cup 04/16/94)

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/15634-wild-pegasus-vs-great-sasuke-njpw-super-j-cup-041694/

 

3) Chris Benoit vs Raven (WCW Souled Out 01/24/98)

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/26754-chris-benoit-vs-raven-wcw-souled-out-012498/

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I looked at the nominees list and didn't see the following, my apologies if I accidentally am mentioning someone already nominated.

 

 

Sgt. Slaughter

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18542-hulk-hogan-vs-sgt-slaughter-wwf-msg-network-060391-desert-storm-match/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18385-hulk-hogan-vs-sgt-slaughter-wwf-wrestlemania-vii-032491/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18216-sgt-slaughter-vs-ultimate-warrior-wwf-royal-rumble-011991/

 

 

Eric Embry

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18856-eric-embry-vs-tom-pritchard-uswa-on-wmc-5-110991/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18626-jerry-lawler-vs-eric-embry-uswa-072291/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18516-bill-dundee-vs-eric-embry-uswa-dallas-sportatorium-052491-cage-match/

 

 

LA Park / Original La Parka

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/14691-el-hijo-del-santo-octagon-rey-misterio-jr-la-parka-vs-pentagon-jerry-estrada-psicosis-fuerza-guerrera-aaa-070895/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/13680-el-hijo-del-santo-octagon-perro-aguayo-vs-la-parka-blue-panther-fishman-aaa-061292/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/16093-jerry-estrada-cien-caras-mascara-ano-2000-vs-perro-aguayo-la-parka-octagon-aaa-120594/

 

 

Dr. Wagner Jr.

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/27111-koji-kanemoto-vs-dr-wagner-jr-njpw-best-of-the-super-juniors-060398/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/13489-silver-king-el-texano-gran-hamada-vs-negro-casas-dr-wagner-jr-rambo-uwa-022992/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/13418-lightning-kid-jerry-lynn-dr-wagner-jr-vs-dos-caras-silver-king-el-texano-hamadas-uwf-011992/

 

 

Ray Gonzalez

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/19176-puerto-rico-wrestling/

 

 

Dave “Fit” Finlay

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/16115-dave-finlay-vs-doink-the-clown-cwa-121794/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18754-dave-finlay-vs-dave-taylor-cwa-091591/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/11244-steven-regal-vs-fit-finlay-wcw-monday-nitro-042996-parking-lot-brawl/

 

 

The Rock

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/27351-hhh-vs-the-rock-wwf-summerslam-083098-ladder-match/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/27185-the-rock-vs-ken-shamrock-wwf-king-of-the-ring-062898/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/27410-the-rock-vs-ken-shamrock-vs-mankind-wwf-breakdown-092798-cage-match/

 

 

Ted DiBiase

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/18701-ted-dibiase-vs-virgil-wwf-summerslam-082691/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/17406-shawn-michaels-vs-ted-dibiase-wwf-hottest-matches-042490/

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/17927-ted-dibiase-vs-dustin-rhodes-wwf-superstars-110390/

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Might be way premature (although we have a long way to go) but I feel the best wrestler in the world deserves a look:

 

Timothy Thatcher:

 

(Reviews taken from WKO; all from this year)

 

vs Drew Gulak FIP 3/14

This is the MOTY. Long story short, after searching around a few particular websites I came to the conclusion that the only way I'd be able to see this match is if I pay the $10 for the VOD of the show. It was more than worth the money. Beautiful technique to begin with. Timothy Thatcher proved he's the best wrestler in the world by properly executing a headlock takeover. Vicious arm work done to Gulak's arm, and to Thatcher's leg, to which both guys sold wonderfully and it was played a big factor down the stretch. Everything was a struggle. Everything. When one of them gained some sort of positioning or slapped on a hold it felt like they earned it. Each transition felt organic and creative. As is the case with elite mat workers, tons of awesome little details were done to add to everything. Lots of stiff shots too. At one point Gulak had Thatcher in a leg lock and they were kicking each other in the head! All the near falls towards the end escalated the story of the match and I bought into every one. Some of the best mat work, selling, and overall work you'll see in North America. Maybe ever. Don't wait for this to pop up somewhere, because it probably won't. This is worth every penny. MOTY.

 

vs Drew Gulak EVOLVE 8/9

 

Well, they did it again. Starts off with the usual awesome mat struggles that only a handful of people in the world are doing right now which is pretty damn hilarious and sad at the same time. Thatcher gets ahold of Gulak's hand and tries to rip his fingers off. His base is incredible. He came from everywhere going after Gulak's hand/arm in devastating ways. Gulak was also doing some pretty awesome shit with leg submissions, like rolling into leg and ankle locks from outta nowhere like he was Volk Han. Thatcher became more of a snug, aggressive SOB as the match progressed, doing things like driving his elbow into Gulak's face to get out of an armbar. It's as awesome as it sounds. Sickest spot of the match was Thatcher getting ahold of Gulak's hand and doing his damnedest to dislocate his fingers. Gulak's selling was great. It really felt like 'grab the body part of your choosing and make that MFer tap' down the stretch. Must see stuff. These guys (along with Biff Busick) are blowing everybody right now, and this is another gem to add to the trios' resume. Timothy Thatcher is the best wrestler alive.

 

vs Biff Busick Beyond 4/13

 

(bucky's review)

This blew me the hell away. God I can't believe Cordeiro put this up for free. He is a good man but he cost himself five bucks because I was just about to buy this show. You gotta wonder why a million Thatcher matches didn't pop up online during his time on the east coast. I can't remember the last time an American match had such legitimate work in it. Thatcher's counters are so beautiful, the way he fights out of holds instead of resorting to fancy dumb shit. He's got more of a Battlarts feel to him than World of Sport. This was a lot like the 4/27 Busick/Gulak match in the way Busick had to fight for every inch, and that's probably the role Busick is best at. The way he went to strikes thinking it would give him the upper hand, but Thatcher just levels him with uppercuts. Then he decides his only hope is the reverse necklock and looks to grab the hold at any opportunity. Excellent work. Also the fact that they actually build to the strikes makes everyone else look silly when they go out there and immediately work an elbow exchange in the first 2 minutes. I loved this so much. I might add a paragraph here once I've had the chance to rewatch but yeah this is easily a top 5 match of the year.

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Tracy Smothers. These come from the SMW folder not all the reviews are mine.

 

 

Tennessee Chain Match for SMW Heavyweight Title: "Dirty White Boy" Tony Anthony © vs. "Wild Eyed Southern Boy" Tracy Smothers (4/2/93) They did a great job here of building up the importance of this match saying this was the first Tennessee Chain match in 15 years. Smothers dominated early taking the battle to DWB in and outside the ring using the chain to choke DWB where he starts touching the turnbuckles and goes to three sides but stops to deliver more punishment. Smothers touches the buckles again but Ron Wright would break it up so Smothers went back to pounding on DWB choking him with the chain on the floor. Tracy then gets the mic and calls DWB a stinkin yankee and drops a leg right in his balls. Smothers again touches 3 corners choking DWB with the chain but again DWB fights back to stop him. Tracy would then go up top with DWB pulling the chain to crotch him on the turnbuckle and finally DWB will go on offense. DWB uses the chain himself and brings out the juice from Tracy then follows up nothing but shots with the chain as blood flows freely from Tracy's head. DWB then touches 3 corners but Tracy fights back like DWB did earlier although not enough as DWB kept attacking him. DWB then tied up Smothers' legs with the chain as he touched 3 corners again but Smothers was able to monkey flip him over to break the count. Smothers would keep fighting back but DWB is too fresh and again touches corners but Tracy would jump on his back before missing a splash in the corner. DWB again would choke Smothers with the chain before touching corners yet again with Tracy again jumping him after he touched 3. DWB answered back by throwing Tracy over the top rope where he hung with the chain but after coming back in the ring he would pull DWB off the top rope with the chain to start his comeback. Tracy starts teeing off on DWB who is now bleeding as the crowd goes nuts and he would use the chain to choke DWB as he goes around the ring to touch the corners but he changed his mind and carried him on his back to touch the 3rd corner but DWB's weight took him down. DWB then took the chain and dragged Tracy by the neck around the ring and both men touched the corners and after DWB would flip Smothers over his head he would touch the 4th corner to get the win. The crowd is apeshit as Tracy gets the belt and this was an awesome match. Slam dunk nomination.

 

Lsdder match vs. Candido 4/1/94

 

I thought this match was amazing and one of the top ten matches in SMW history.I can see people saying this is better than the Wrestlemania X ladder match. It was so awesome how the wrestlers worked a bout on a normal level and then worked the ladder into the match. Just so many great stuff and moments in the bout.

 

 

Southern Boys vs. MX

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/17634-midnight-express-vs-southern-boys-nwa-great-american-bash-070790/

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Tracy Smothers. These come from the SMW folder not all the reviews are mine.

 

 

Tennessee Chain Match for SMW Heavyweight Title: "Dirty White Boy" Tony Anthony © vs. "Wild Eyed Southern Boy" Tracy Smothers (4/2/93) They did a great job here of building up the importance of this match saying this was the first Tennessee Chain match in 15 years. Smothers dominated early taking the battle to DWB in and outside the ring using the chain to choke DWB where he starts touching the turnbuckles and goes to three sides but stops to deliver more punishment. Smothers touches the buckles again but Ron Wright would break it up so Smothers went back to pounding on DWB choking him with the chain on the floor. Tracy then gets the mic and calls DWB a stinkin yankee and drops a leg right in his balls. Smothers again touches 3 corners choking DWB with the chain but again DWB fights back to stop him. Tracy would then go up top with DWB pulling the chain to crotch him on the turnbuckle and finally DWB will go on offense. DWB uses the chain himself and brings out the juice from Tracy then follows up nothing but shots with the chain as blood flows freely from Tracy's head. DWB then touches 3 corners but Tracy fights back like DWB did earlier although not enough as DWB kept attacking him. DWB then tied up Smothers' legs with the chain as he touched 3 corners again but Smothers was able to monkey flip him over to break the count. Smothers would keep fighting back but DWB is too fresh and again touches corners but Tracy would jump on his back before missing a splash in the corner. DWB again would choke Smothers with the chain before touching corners yet again with Tracy again jumping him after he touched 3. DWB answered back by throwing Tracy over the top rope where he hung with the chain but after coming back in the ring he would pull DWB off the top rope with the chain to start his comeback. Tracy starts teeing off on DWB who is now bleeding as the crowd goes nuts and he would use the chain to choke DWB as he goes around the ring to touch the corners but he changed his mind and carried him on his back to touch the 3rd corner but DWB's weight took him down. DWB then took the chain and dragged Tracy by the neck around the ring and both men touched the corners and after DWB would flip Smothers over his head he would touch the 4th corner to get the win. The crowd is apeshit as Tracy gets the belt and this was an awesome match. Slam dunk nomination.

 

Lsdder match vs. Candido 4/1/94

 

I thought this match was amazing and one of the top ten matches in SMW history.I can see people saying this is better than the Wrestlemania X ladder match. It was so awesome how the wrestlers worked a bout on a normal level and then worked the ladder into the match. Just so many great stuff and moments in the bout.

 

 

Southern Boys vs. MX

 

http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/17634-midnight-express-vs-southern-boys-nwa-great-american-bash-070790/

Just when you mention that, what are regarded as the best SMW matches? I've never seen a list put out, would like to give it a look through sometime....

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I just noticed that Duggan isn't on the list...he had some classics in Mid-South against all kinds of guys

Are we going to nominate anyone who ever had a half decent match?

 

 

Considering the scope and intent of the project, I think it's necessary for the project's credibility that any and all notable names are given their due process of consideration (even if it's a tough sell for them to make anyone's final list).

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I just noticed that Duggan isn't on the list...he had some classics in Mid-South against all kinds of guys

Are we going to nominate anyone who ever had a half decent match?

 

 

Considering the scope and intent of the project, I think it's necessary for the project's credibility that any and all notable names are given their due process of consideration (even if it's a tough sell for them to make anyone's final list).

 

Yeah, depending on how many people vote, it will be interesting to see how many names come up. Hopefully it would be 100 wrestlers all jumbled into various positions.....

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I just noticed that Duggan isn't on the list...he had some classics in Mid-South against all kinds of guys

Are we going to nominate anyone who ever had a half decent match?

 

Duggan made those DiBiase matches great don't hate him.

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Dump Matsumoto:

 

8/22/85 with Bull Nakano vs. The Jumping Bomb Angels

 

Crazy start to this match that's set for 2/3 falls before settling in to a nice tag match with the Angels selling big for Dump's offense.

 

8/28/85 Hair vs. Hair: vs. Chigusa Nagayo (Part 1 of 3, other parts linked within)

 

The match that got AJW kicked off Japanese TV for a little bit as Chig bleeds buckets and Dump looks like the devil incarnate in front of the schoolgirl crowd. One of the most heated matches I've ever seen.

 

11/7/86 Hair vs. Hair: vs. Chigusa Nagayo (Part 1 of 5, other parts linked within)

 

The rematch, which is either at the same level or maybe even better with Chigusa becoming the face of the company by this point. Dump is probably at the peak of her powers here.

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