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MLW Kings of Colosseum
January 6, 2024

by Doc Allen

MLW style=

Live from the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There's a few hundred people in attendance. Joe Dombrowski and Matt Striker are on commentary.

Wasted Youth (Dyln McKay and Marcus Mathers) and Alec Price vs. Tony Deppen, TJ Crawford, and Griffin McCoy

Wasted Youth greet Deppen's crew with topes. Deppen directs his team to clear the ring in order to pick Mathers apart. Crawford wastes time swinging at Price, and Mathers hits a desperation back body drop. Hot tag to Price, who hits an overhead suplex on Deppen. Running knee lift by Price, then a leg lariat for 2. Mathers drapes Deppen in a backstabber for McKay's senton. The match breaks down, Deppens team botch a triple powerbomb but still get a nearfall. McKay gets swarmed by rapid finishers but inexplicably kicks out after a driver. McCoy stops McKay's comeback with a sick powerbomb. Mathers helps with a cutter, but then eats Crawford's DVD. They tease a Tower of Doom, instead Price hits double team electric chair bulldogs! Deppen and Crawford recover for stereo German suplexes. Price springboards off of Crawford's shoulders for a DDT on Deppen! Wasted Youth finish Crawford with Youth Gone Wild to win at about 12:00. Super fun opener, Price and Wasted Youth provided great highlight reel material, ***.
Winners: Wasted Youth and Alec Price

Zayda sneaks up to MLW Champion Alex Kane's dressing room for an impromptu interview. Kane is a Man of the People, so he'll give Zayda a scoop. He plans on squeezing Richard Holliday's head until it pops.

MLW Featherweight Championship:
Janai Kai ©p (with Salina de la Renta) Hyper Misao

Misao looks as though she could be The Hurricane's new sidekick. Jesus Rodriguez provides Kai's ring introduction. They trade head scissors for a stalemate. Kai kicks away a handshake, so Misao makes her pay with a flurry of offense, including a pendulum swing. Kai answers with a boot to the skull and takes control. Misao counters into a sorta DDT and wrenches Kai's arm over the top rope. Misao hits a crossbody from the apron. She rides her superhero bike around the ring for a novel clothesline. High crossbody by Misao gets 2, so he applies a crossface chicken wing. Salina prepares to interfere, but Misao shoots cold spray into her face. Kai was ready to strike and finishes with a Dragon Sleeper at 7:15. Misao has a charming character, but this was kind of rough. There were numerous timing issues that I couldn't quite capture in the PBP. Kai never seemed to be in any real danger either, **.
Winner and still MLW Featherweight Champions: Janai Kai

MLW Tag Team Championship:
The Second Gear Crew © (Matthew Justice and 1 Called Manders) vs. World Titan Federation (Josh Bishop and Tom Lawlor, with Zayda and Saint Laurent)

This is a grudge match, so they start with a ringside brawl. The SGC smash a table against Lawlor. Bishop saves his partner by smashing a plank over the SGC's skulls. Bishop and Manders trade chops while Justice menaces Saint Laurent with a toolbox. Bishop head butts Manders in the jaw, but Justice takes his place in the chopfest. Lawlor saves his partner from a 2 on 1 situation and gives Justice a superplex. Lawlor delivers machine gun chops to Manders. The fight continues in the ring under tornado tag rules. Lawlor sits Manders in a chair for a Busaiku Knee. Justice wakes up to spark the SGC comeback. They build a precarious bunk bed of chairs and planks, but try to finish Bishop with a spear. It will be a miracle if the structure stays together long enough for a stunt bump. Bishop sends Justice into the ring post, leaving Lawlor and Manders to slug it out. Manders hits a power slam and the bunk bed tumbles apart. Zayda attacks Manders eyes and he makes her pay with a lariat. Bishop throws a chair into Manders' face and hits a Razor's Edge over the ropes and through a table! WTF rebuild the bunk bed and double team Justice, who manages to shove Lawlor through a ringside table. Justice gives Bishop a DVD through the bunk bed (which falls like a Jenga tower) and wins at 15:37! Very entertaining brawl that was hindered by the uncooperative props at times, ***¼.
Winners and still MLW Tag Team Champions: The Second Gear Crew

WTF aren't finished and deliver a revenge post-match beatdown.

AKIRA interrupts the ring crew's clean up to call out Rickey Shane Page.

MLW National Openweight Championship (Taipei Death Match):
Rickey Shane Page © vs. AKIRA

They waste no time tearing into each other. RSP quickly Irish whips AKIRA through a wooden board and cuts him with a broken piece. AKIRA starts bleeding profusely while RSP continues targeting his forehead. RSP hits a scoop slam onto a broken plank. RSP injures his own hand while punching broken glass into AKIRA's skull. AKIRA refuses to let himself get taped to the rops and makes a brave comeback. German suplex by AKIRA gets 2, so he applies an ankle lock. RSP won't tap, so AKIRA hits a running kick for 2. RSP answers with a superplex onto glass shards. RSP hits the Hindenburg Disaster but AKIRA KICKS OUT! AKIRA hits the Meteora for only 2. A goon in a gas mask gives RSP a bucket full of broken glass to spill all over AKIRA. RSP places AKIRA under a glass bridge and delivers a BRUTAL back senton! Fans chant “holy sh!t!” AKIRA KICKS OUT! AKIRA dares RSP to hit him and then spits in his face on the way to a Saito suplex onto the glass! AKIRA prepares the Death Penalty, but Sami Callihan sneaks up behind him for a spike DDT. RSP gets the easy pin at 12:21! Boooooo! Top level hardcore match, it only needed a satisfying finish to be great, ***¾.
Winner and still MLW National Openweight Champion: Rickey Shane Page

Sami, RSP, and the gas mask goons continue their assault on AKIRA.

Love is Blind(fold) Match:
Brett Ryan Gosselin vs. Love, Doug

Brett feels that Doug is stalking his girlfriend, B3cca, so obviously they must settle it in the never-terrible blindfold match. Doug enters dressed as a cupid, so this might just be campy enough to work. They start with some hil-air-ious stumbling around. The fans try to help Doug find Brett, and they both go down after double clotheslines. Brett sneakily unmasks and puts on brass knucks for a brutal KO blow. Luckily for Doug, he slips to ringside. Brett nearly punches out the ref by mistake and loses his focus. Doug stumbles back and hits an Asai DDT to win at 3:23! Well, this was mercifully short and sweet. The fans were willing to play along, this worked out okay, especially as a palate cleanser from the hardcore matches.
Winner: Love, Doug

MLW World Championship:
Alex Kane © (with Mr. Thomas) vs. Richard Holliday (with Saint Laurent)

The fans are behind Kane at the bell. They lock up, Holliday quickly flees to the ropes. Holliday reverses a waistlock into a side headlock. Shoulder block by Holliday, he gloats too long and Kane hits a belly to belly suplex. Holiday blocks a big splash, but Kane recovers with a German suplex. Holliday pokes the eyes in order to hit a powerslam on the floor. Kane absorbs a beating but makes a comeback with a pump handle suplex. Holliday answers with a cutter, but Kane pops up for a surprising spear. Ripchord Olympic Slam by Kane gets 2. Holliday reverses with an avalanche neckbreaker, but Kane slips to ringside. Kane applies his version of the sleeper, but Holliday reverses into rapid pin attempts. Tiger Driver by Holliday, but Kane kicks out! Holiday chops the throat, but Kane responds with a chokeslam for 2. Kane goes for Fade to Black, but the ref gets knocked out and can't see Holliday tapping out. Holliday administers a low blow, while his WTF running mates run in. Josh Bishop gives Kane a Razor's Edge through a table! The ref wakes up to count, but KANE KICKS OUT! Kane desperately tries an inside cradle, but settles for Fade to Black. Holliday passes out at 13:53! This was a very satisfying babyface-overcoming-the-odds match and a good example of sports entertainment done well, ***½
Winner and still MLW World Champion: Alex Kane

Joe Dombrowski announces that Satoshi Kojima will challenge for the World title at MLW Superfight. Kojima arrives and happily tosses bagels into the crowd. Sami Callihan interrupts to voice his outrage that Kojima is throwing bagels in such a legendary arena. Fans give Sami a “boring” chant. Sami doesn't care and spits water in Joe's face. He tells Kojima to go, um, make love to himself, sparking a pull apart brawl.

Meanwhile, Salina de la Renta and Rocky Romero complain about the news that Mistico is coming to MLW. Salina decides to throw Averno at Mistico for Superfight.

Matt Riddle vs. Jacob Fatu

The fans are ready for this and provide dueling chants. Fatu cheap shots the chest in an otherwise clean break. Riddle tries a hammerlock but Fatu throws him away. Riddle springboards into Fatu's head butt. They trade some stiff shots, but Fatu tosses Riddle for a tope suicida! Riddle recovers with a penalty kick and a springboard somersault senton to outside! Riddle flies into Fatu's sitout powerbomb! Fatu takes control with attacks to the spine and skull. Riddle answers with a surprising German suplex. Fatu absorbs numerous kicks and nails a wild Uranage. Back handspring moonsault by Fatu, but he seems to tweak his own knee. They exchange angry strikes, Riddle nails an exploder suplex and back senton for 2. Penalty kick by Riddle, and a twisting senton for another nearfall. They trade more furious strikes and both hit the canvas for a round of applause. They brawl back to their feet while yelling catchphrases, and Fatu nails a pop up Samoan Drop! Riddle reverses a moonsault into a triangle choke! Fatu reverses again with a powerbomb, but Riddle holds on for another triangle choke! Fatu escapes, Riddle tries a rear naked choke, but Fatu shakes him off with a backdrop. Riddle wrenches in a nasty chicken wing variation and Fatu immediately taps at 12:26! Nonstop action from bell to bell. Riddle looks like he's ready to take over the indies again. ****.
Winner: Matt Riddle

Riddle and Fatu hug it out, ending the show on a feelgood note.

Final Thoughts: This show was a pleasant way to spend a Saturday night. MLW has reloaded their roster with some of the best up and coming stars from the indie scene, giving them a real boost. I wouldn't say there's anything must-see here, but if you're looking for another wrestling alternative that blends shameless sports entertainment with big fight drama, you should probably give MLW a look.

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