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GCW: Homecoming - July 24, 2021

by Samoa Rowe


Live from the Carousel Room At Showboat Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The room is packed with fans. I got this show for free with my built up credits on FiteTV, so I'm feeling pretty pleased with myself. Our hosts are Dave Prazak and Kevin Gill.

Marko Stunt vs. Starboy Charlie

Both guys look like they're 12, this will be fun. The fans have fun chanting stuff while they lock up. They have some fun pretending to be heavyweights before letting loose into a running leap frog sequence. Stunt builds steam and sends Charlie to ringside with a rana and then dishes out a tope suicida! Charlie shakes it off (no-sells) and hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Charlie goes on offense and uses Snake Eyes to set up a nasty German suplex. Stunt's comeback is cut short when Charlie sweeps him on the ring frame. Charlie puts Stunt through a chair with a running DVD! Springboard Phoenix Splash by Charlie gets 2. They both take a bump into the buckles and the fans give them the “This is awesome!” treatment. Stunt is up first and hits a gutwrench suplex and running dropkick. Flying elbow by Stunt and decapitation lariat! Stunt's Sliced Bread #2 gets a 2.9999 count! Charlie comes back with a shotgun dropkick into the buckles, Stunt kicks out! Stunt kicks out of a Falcon Arrow and puts Charlie away with a Sunset Bomb at 14:48! Decent opener that greatly benefited from a crowd looking to have a good time, **¾.
Winner: Marko Stunt

Tony Deppen vs. Ninja Mack

Fans give them a dueling chant at the bell. Mack uses his athleticism to get under Deppen's skin. They exchange shoulder blocks, Deppen loses his temper and unloads forearm smashes. Deppen hits a mid-air dropkick and then a well aimed missile dropkick to the gut. Mack hits a running uppercut and then a pair of standing flying attacks. Deppen is spooked and takes a time out. He lures Mack into a trap at ringside and takes control with arrogant offense. Mack comes back and makes a point of hitting many unnecessary backflips on his way to a moonsault to ringside. Deppen answers with an STF, but Mack gets the ropes. Mack lands on his feet in a moonsault attempt and makes a half hearted attempt to sell his knee before hitting a German Suplex and poison rana. Another rana by Mack gets 2. Deppen politely repositions himself to take Mack's 630 splash. Deppen traps Mack on the buckles for a V-Trigger through his legs. Mack kips up to counter a flying Deppen with a Code Breaker! Mack misses the Phoenix 630 and eats Deppen's Shing Wizard and pinned at 11:39. I really wanted to like this match more than I did, but Mack didn't reach my generously low threshold for selling and psychology, and they overly telegraphed numerous spots, **¼.
Winner: Tony Deppen

Nolan Edward vs. AJ Gray

Edward is sporting a spooky new mask, he could probably use a more intimidating ring name than “Nolan.” Gray controls the action early, but Nolan gets a break. Nolan hits a dive to ringside and then a frog splash into the ring. Gray rights the ship with some knife edge chops and forearms to the face. Edward fires back, Gray chops him off his feet, Edward rips off his mask and they both unleash a frenzy of shots. Gray hits a punishing powerbomb into a half crab. Decapitation lariat by Gray gets 2, Edward pops up for a series of stiff shots, but Gray hits another lariat. Gray's Jackhammer slam ends it at 7:30. Good little brawl with a few little psychology hiccups, they left it all in the ring, **¾.
Winner: AJ Gray

Grimm Reefer vs. 2 Cold Scorpio

They feel each other out, and Reefer takes a time out to enjoy a blunt. He offers to share with Scorpio, but then cheap shots with a shot to the midsection. Scorpio butterflies the arms and takes the blunt by force to enjoy a puff. Ah, wrestling never fails to surprise and amuse me. Reefer counters with a crossface, and resumes smoking. Come on, guys, we're still in a pandemic, and you're swapping germs. Reefer plays possum to lure Scorpio into another crossface. Scorpio escapes and hits a running boot at ringside. Reefer tries a springboard somersault leg drop, Scorpio kind of blocks, but they both go down. Scorpio might be a little too high and slips while climbing the ropes, and Reefer capitalizes with a leaping DDT. Glancing Swanton Bomb by Reefer gets 2. Pele Kick by Scorpio, and then a moonsault leg drop to win at 10:21! The fans are utterly delighted by that finish, and I guess I am too. Scorpio and Reefer celebrate together with the blunt, **½.
Winner: 2 Cold Scorpio

GCW Ultraviolent Championship/BJW World Championship (Death Match): Alex Colon vs. Drew Parker

The ring is full of light tubes, glass doors, and other fun props that would make Domino's uncomfortable. Yeah, I'm writing this after Nick Gage's instantly infamous appearance on Dynamite, so hot takes about death match wrestling is all the rage right now. If you read my reviews, you know that I typically rate them on the lower side, but I can begrudgingly be inclined to enjoy them when I think there's a deeper story or meaning to them. The GCW audience clearly loves them, and it's hard to crap on them when they are going nuts, so I try to keep an open mind. This particular crowd is totally jazzed to see this. They spend about 15 seconds chain wrestling before Parker smashes a light tube over Colon's head. Colon answers with a light tube assisted tope suicida. Parker hits a modified (well, botched) Sliced Bread off of the ring post. Parker throws F'n lawn darts into Colon's back, I might vomit. I hope I never have to explain to my children why I watch this sh!t. Colon doesn't like it either and breaks more light tubes over Parker's head, neck, eyes, and forehead. Parker answers with a cutter onto a pile of broken glass. Parker hits a Van Terminator through numerous light tubes, and then a proper dive to ringside. Parker then hits a brutal avalanche DDT through a log cabin of light tubes for only 2. They slug their way back to their feet and Colon hits a sleeper suplex. Parker no sells and hits a running DVD into a glass door that doesn't break! Colon returns the favor and the door shatters to pieces. Colon puts tubes in Parker's arms and hits a running dropkick. In case you're wondering, the live crowd LOVES this. Colon brings in a “giant glass thing” and sets it on some chairs. Colon leaves it to hit a DVD on the ring frame and then a diving DDT. Parker counters with a superplex through the glass contraption! Swanton Bomb by Parker, but Colon pops up at 1! They duke it out to wild crowd appreciation. Colon locks on a Camel Clutch, Parker elbows out. Colon sets a barbed wire panel of glass onto some chairs, looks for a Spanish Fly, but Parker counters into a Burning Hammer through the plunder! Colon kicks out! Parker hits one more Swanton through a bundle of tubes, but Colon kicks out again! Parker finishes with a chinlock at 18:42! Brutal match that managed to provide some genuinely exciting moments in the late stretch. Having said that, I NEVER want to see lawn darts used in such a manner ever again. I'm giving it extra points for using the chinlock as a finisher, ***½.
Winner and new GCW Ultraviolent Champion: Drew Parker


Six Way Scramble:
Jordan Oliver vs. Brayden Lee vs. Dante Leon vs. Jack Cartwheel vs. Shane Mercer vs. Atticus Cogar

Mercer hates Ohio and suplexes Cogar. Everyone standing around and watching Mercer makes for an unintentionally funny scene. The ring clears out, Cartwheel and Lee show off their raw athleticism and hit stereo dives. Cogar picks his spot to hit a German suplex, draping somersault senton, and dive to ringside. Mercer finds an opening to run wild. Leon sunset bombs Oliver into a cutter, and lands a double missile dropkick. Lee sneaks in to suplex two men. The ring clears out for Leon's crazy twisting press onto everyone. Cartwheel hits a nifty back handspring dive. Cogar interrupts Cartwheel's dive and hits a standing moonsault. Mercer lifts Cogar, Oliver leaps off Cogar for a cutter! Oliver hits Mercer with a top rope cutter. Lee and Cartwheel go for double shooting stars (Lee totally whiffs). Leon hits a Swanton, and everyone takes a breather (the fans miss their cue to applaud). Mercer military press slam Leon off the top rope! He slams Cartwheel onto Leon. Cogar sticks skewers into Mercer's forehead, but Mercer no sells to hit a press slam anyway. Mercer defiantly hits Oliver with a top rope fallaway slam. Lee's sitout powerbomb gets 2 on Cartwheel. Oliver hits Lee with Cleopatra and a cloud cutter. Cogar low blows Oliver to steal the pin on Cartwheel at 11:51. That finish made me chuckle. This spotfest was a bit rough around the edges, and this audience wasn't buying what they were selling tonight, **½.
Winner: Atticus Cogar

GCW Tag Team Championship:
Jimmy Lloyd and G-Raver © vs. The Second Gear Crew (Matthew Justice and Mance Warner)

The fans are totally behind the Second Gear Crew. Lloyd surprises with an immediate dive, and G-Raver follows up with one of his own. They exchange weapon shots at ringside and Warner is quickly busted open. Lloyd gets his mitts on a staple gun and staples Warner's face to a door. I'm going to throw up. They slam Justice onto the door, ripping Warner's mouth free in the process. The SGC come back to punch Lloyd into a delirium, so much so that he gives his own partner a cutter. G-Raver makes a one man comeback, and Lloyd helps him set up doors in opposite corners. Raver throws Justice through a door for only 2. Warner returns with belt shots, and drops down to make G-Raver think it was Lloyd who hit him. Justice spears Raver and Lloyd through a door to end their argument. The SGC bring in a barbed wired door. Raver loses his temper and leaves Lloyd to go it alone. The SGC destroy Lloyd with chair shots and Warner spears him through the wired door. Justice finishes with a frog splash at 11:41! Another gruesome outing, but this time anchored by a well told dissension story between the champs, **¾.
Winners and new GCW Tag Team Champions: The Second Gear Crew

G-Raver grabs a mic and lets us all know just how much he hated teaming with Lloyd. He challenges Lloyd to a grand finale when they return to Chicago.

Jah-C vs. Effy (with Allie Katch)

This is an impromptu match, and the fans are 100% behind Effy. He hits a Jah with a backbreaker and wipes his face on his stomach. Jah answers with a nasty back hand slap to the face. Effy delivers running attacks into the buckles and applies a draping stretch muffler. Jah back drops Effy into the ring and hits a TKO for 2. Jah swats away Effy's blockbuster attempt. Effy bites the chest, but Jah hits a DDT for 2. Jah fakes a flying move and instead pelvic thrusts Effy in the face. Effy responds with head butts and delivers a slick vertical suplex. Chokeslam by Effy gets 2. Effy delivers mounted pelvic thrusts in place of punches, and hits Under the Rainbow for 2. Effy's Dragon sleeper finishes at 5:51. Totally acceptable popcorn match that got the fans going, **.
Winner: Effy

GCW World Championship (Death Match):
Nick Gage © vs. Matt Cardona

Cardona needs security to escort him through the hostile crowd to get into the ring. By contrast, Gage moshes with the fans during his entrance. In fact, Gage's pre match celebration with the fans goes so long, even the Sandman would say “Hey, get to the ring already.” Gage assaults Cardona during introductions and stomps him into the buckles. Gage brings in a box of light tubes, but Cardona drop toe holds Gage face first through a tube. Cardona puts on purple gloves and delivers the Broski Boot. Gage pops up and breaks a tube over his own head. Cardona flees, but Gage launches him into some chairs. Gage misses a chair shot and hits Cardona's special action figure display. Cardona sees red and lands a dive onto Gage. Cardona grins while gingerly breaking a light tube over Gage's head. Cardona hits a body slam onto some glass for 2. Gage comes back with a senton, and the crowd roars as he brings in a glass sheet. Cardona stops Gage with a tube shot, and he seems to be enjoying himself, despite clearly not being comfortable handling the tubes. Gage spears Cardona through the glass sheet for a massive pop! Gage repeatedly smashes light tubes over Cardona's carcass. Gage fetches the dreaded pizza cutter and carves up Cardona's forehead. The fans LOVE this. Gage buries Cardona under a glass sheet and chairs, but Cardona cuts him off on the top rope. Cardona puts Gage through the glass with a superplex! Powerbomb by Cardona only gets 2. Gage hits a chokeslam backbreaker, but gets distracted by a masked man entering to “Judas.” . Gage hits the mystery man with a brainbuster. Cardona capitalizes with a Codebreaker for 2! Pair of piledrivers by Gage, and 44OH! run in for an attack. Gage tries to fight them off but ultimately falls to the greater numbers. Rickey Shane Page arrives late to call off his stablemates, and then fully turns on his friends to help Gage clear the ring. RSP then can't help but turn on Gage with a low blow. Cardona smashes light tubes over Gage and finishes with the Rough Ryder at 24:30! The fans shower Cardona with cans and beers while he hoists the GCW title in the air. This was an instant classic match and moment, Cardona is totally rewriting his story post-WWE, ****¼.
Winner and new GCW World Champion: Matt Cardona

Final Thoughts: Great show, if you can stomach it. The Cardona main event and title win is something worth seeing, but be warned that it's a brutal, bloody spectacle. Recommended.

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