Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Straight Edge Friend Total Scumbag In Every Other Way Possible

CM Punk VS Jimmy Rave - ROH Steel Cage Match 5/14/2005

CJD: So as we allude to on here every now and then John, you and I have been getting together to hang out and watch pro wrestling for two decades and counting. And in the early days we played anything and everything, but circa 2004 we both started keeping books of matches to play for each other and our friends. Well this match comes from my big book which I just added the 782nd match to last week. This is match number 49 for all you stat geeks out there. And while I'll never get to play it for you and the gang in person, I'm more than happy to share it on PIF instead (and finally cross it off!).

I think this bookends last week nicely, going from a match that's all about building to a payoff, to a match that is as classic of a way to end a feud as you can get. I loved this Punk/Rave feud at the time even though I wasn't a huge fan of either guy. Rave grew into a great heel in the Embassy and say what you will about Punk, he's the type of personality you want to watch even if you don't like him. This match is a wild ride and didn't disappoint revisting it all these years later. And if you ever wanted a reminder of just how shitty Gabe was on commentary, well, here you go!

JJZ: This is fantastic Chris. I so remembering talking about this match with you and feel like I'm sitting in my old apartment at 2AM after a Wawa run. Loving that my match was a build to a cage match and your match actually is one. This crowd is lit to the tits. Jimmy Rave, at one time I hated him then came to love him. He does not suck and has talent no matter what people shout during his matches. I'm feeling the slow, taking his revenge build to start this match. The way the feud built to this match was done so well from what I remember. I know I was driven insane by Rave's chicken shit tactics during their matches and it continued in this one. Punk could of hid that cut job a little better. The Crown Jewel really brought his A game though, playing his role to perfection with Punk doing what Punk always does best in story telling. This match is seriously the anti-WWE cage match with all the blood and choking. Jade Chung bumping her ass off! This match is truly one of the best Punk matches I've ever seen and a lot of credit needs to go to Rave. You pulled an Ace outta your deck for this one CJD.

(title credit to The Hard Times)

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Dead Man's Party

Undertaker VS CM Punk - WWE 9/25/2009

JJZ: As a person I think CM Punk is a jerkoff. As a wrestler he always brings psychology and story telling to his matches. He is also probably the best talker of the most recent generation. I only ever remember seeing the Mania match between these two before this and I think they work really well together. Punk trying to chop Taker down and keep him down to eliminate the size and power difference is basic but done so well. Even though Punk still needs to learn how to throw a kick the strike exchanges in the match are solid and I love love love the battle on the top rope. The finish of the match put this over the top for me. Very nice story building television match.

CJD: I don't remember these two feuding so many years before their famous Wrestlemania match. This makes me want to watch the Hell In A Cell match that follows. I remember people saying in podcasts and such that Undertaker never had a problem selling for smaller guys as long as you stay on him, and Punk did that in this match. This was definitely one that was more about building to a payoff than it was about the match itself but that's pro wrestling 101. Also if we ever pick a match between two wrestlers you think are shitty people who are both wearing the same color tights I'm pretty sure your brain will implode!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Market Crash

Undertaker VS JBL - WWE No DQ Match 6/16/2005

CJD: One of the best feuds from JBL's awesome run on Smackdown from around this time was against the Undertaker. They worked each other quite a bit so I figured I could dig up a match I either missed or didn't remember that well. This fit the bill and is a great example of one of the things I loved so much about this feud, which was how huge of a threat JBL made the Undertaker feel like. No doubt Taker is one of the best big men ever but I think JBL is the real star of this hoss match. Although I did mark out for Taker taking a page from an old rival's playbook (I think you'll catch what I'm laying down).

JJZ: I know JBL is a big dude but seeing him next to Taker puts it into perspective. Five years ago I would have said Taker is really good but not all time. Since then I've come to realize his greatness. His effort to make every match the best that it can be needs to mirrored by every wrestler. The amount of Smackdown matches that have been played on PIF so far is unexpected but not surprising. Totally a hoss battle Chris, super physical and stiff by WWE standards. BUT I gotta disagree with you. Mean Mark needs to get top bill. JBL was a stud in this match but Taker did things and took things that made me say goddammit! I totally picked up what you were throwing by the way. A big man's knees are his biggest weakness and to take that bump popped me huge. Also fucking fantastic falsies. Beautiful match CJD.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

He's Sick Of All These People Talking Out Their Heads

Batista (c) VS JBL - WWE World Heavyweight Championship Bull Rope Match 9/9/2005

JJZ: JBL and bull rope matches seems like a no-brainer. Seeing Big Dave in '05 compared to now is crazy, he had so much more mass. As a person I feel like JBL is a piece of crap. From what I've read just a bad person. But as a wrestler he has my attention. Such a great heel. The back and forth is well done with great heat and energy. But to be honest these guys do very little in this match and are able to accomplish so much. And god damn I always forget how good JBL's lariat is. I liked the finish but what I liked more was Big Dave trying to work safe and it actually ending worse for JBL.

CJD: Ooof that shot! I don't know if the color was hardway or not based on where it hit him, but that made me cringe. You mentioned Mr H last week, and (not so) coincidentally I feel like from 2004-2005 he and I watched almost every episode of Smackdown together. That's a total exaggeration but this era is something I'll always hold dear to my heart. Particularly the Eddie/JBL and Eddie/Rey feuds. That said, I have absolutely no memory of this match! Maybe I just wasn't sold on Batista yet, and he was a bit clunky at times here. But overall this was a blast. If you want to break down the psychology pay close attention to how many times they attempt to touch the corners, what they accomplish each time they do, and how many times they repeat an attempt for the same purpose. This is the first pro wrestling match I've watched in over two weeks since getting back from my honeymoon and it did not disappoint.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Mason-Dixon Tri-state Outercontinental WWKD Champions #21-30

For nine straight Champions PIF had a pretty coherent, if increasingly more obscure, narrative to our completely made-up and inconsequential title. And then there was Sabu.

21. Daniel Bryan / Bryan Danielson
22. Kaval / Low Ki
What is there to say about these two. I remember when you had to defend whether or not they were believable pro wrestlers or if they were "playing wrestler." In their own unique way, I think both have proven since they are pro wrestlers through and through regardless of size and stature. These two men refuse to play by anyone else's rules, and while they couldn't be more different, they changed the face of pro wrestling together in VFW Halls and National Guard Armories.

23. Drew Galloway

24. Will Ospreay
25. Marty Scurll
I don't want to get ahead of ourselves here... but if you want to talk about two undersized indy pro wrestlers who could change the face of the industry, well let's just wait and see.

26. Flip Gordon
27. Martin Stone
28. Jon Davis
These are three names that I doubt John or myself could have predicted with a thousand guesses would have been among our first 50 Champs. Welcome to the wonderful world of indy wrestling my friends.

29. Arik Cannon
While I'm ecstatic svelte, real gear owning, PBR sponsored Arik Cannon is having lots of success in 2018... fuck do I miss pasty, pudgy, stuffed into pleather, Kool-Aid Man Arik Cannon.

30. Sabu
One of these things is not like the others.