Memphis Gets Ready For The Grind City Rumble

Championship Wrestling from Memphis Review—May 9th

This week on Championship Wrestling from Memphis, Austin and Nikki Lane will finally get their hands on Derrick King and Queen Katelynn in a big intergender main event. Plus, the path to the Grind City Rumble will lay its final steps as we are only one week away from the big match. What developments will occur on the show that might impact on the Rumble?

Let’s get to the ring and find out!

Brett Michaels vs. Kyle Roberts

It took four moves for Brett Michaels to beat Kyle Roberts; a shoulder block, a press slam, a spine buster and a Gunshow Lariat. 1-2-3. Quick and to the point, this was just a showcase for Brett Michaels, who you have to believe is in with a big shot of winning the Grind City Rumble next week.

Brett Michaels press slams Kyle Roberts
Credit: Dreadhead Kev

“We Are Memphis Wrestling”

Alan Steel appeared in a pre-taped promo filmed from Dustin and Maria Starr’s house. Apart from criticising the stupidity of letting someone like Steel in their house, Alan explained that all the violence that he and Johnny Dotson have brought to CWFM is simply them responding to the first stone that was thrown—not inviting Steel and Dotson to take part in the Cobra Cup tournament.

For Steel, not inviting the veterans to take part in something that was intended to represent the heritage and history of Memphis wrestling was just plain disrespectful. So now they’re going to take part in the Grind City Rumble and because it’s an open invitation, no one can stop them from winning and taking the Memphis Heritage title—because they are “Memphis wrestling”.

It was a nice promo. I like heels who believe they’re doing right, and in this case, Steel and Dotson are the disrespected veterans making a point of showing why they still deserve respect.

Whether either man will win the Grind City Rumble is another matter…

The Skimahorns vs. The Yung Goats

Aaron Roberts kicked things off, throwing both Skimahorn brothers around as if they were as light as feathers, showing incredible strength in the process. A slingshot into the corner on Briar was met with a kick to the head from Zay, he quickly used his high-speed arsenal to overwhelm the brothers. A trip too many to the top though saw Briar push Zay to the mat, where the brothers quickly began double-teaming and working Zay’s legs to cut off Washington’s big strength—his aerial skills.

Still, Zay was able to send the Skimahorns into each other and made the hot tag back to Roberts. Aaron Roberts stormed the ring throwing big clotheslines, before a combination top rope clothesline/back suplex and a big sit-down powerbomb were enough to get the Goats the pinfall victory. Another quick match but this was fun and surprisingly decisive, with no interference from The Posse. Good stuff.

You’ve Got To Be In It To Win It!

This week saw more entries into the Grind City Rumble be drawn, with DJ Brown, Action Jackson, Ryan Rembrandt, Mike Anthony and even Danny B. Good picking numbers.

It served to make the Grind City Rumble seem important, which it should do; the Memphis Heritage title will be up for grabs for the winner of the encounter. And it sold the match well by everyone drawing numbers and wanting to be part of the action. Simple stuff but effective.

Chris Lexx vs. Brandon Espinoza

Brandon Espinoza was making his CWFM debut here, and he certainly made an impression! Starting things off with a solid forearm to the face of Chris Lexx, Espinoza backed Lexx up into the corner and stomped a mudhole through him before taking Lexx over to the other corner and grinding Lexx’s head into the top turnbuckle using his knee.

Trash talk from Espinoza seemed to fire Lexx up and he threw a barrage of clotheslines at Espinoza, who only stemmed the tide with a back elbow before landing a crossbody, choosing not to cover Lexx, instead draping him across the ropes and smashing him in the back of the head with a running leg. A leg scissors choke followed but Lexx bridged up, putting Espinoza’s shoulder’s down for a two count. Lexx managed a few strikes as he tried to build up steam again, but Espinoza took him right back down to the mat, mocking ‘The King of Pow’ with his own ‘Pow!’ chants.

A brainbuster attempt was countered by Lexx into a clothesline that dropped both men to the mat, exhausted. A series of European uppercuts, including one from the second rope, battered Espinoza and a bulldog from Lexx seemed to end the match…or did it? The ref looked to have counted three but Espinoza genuinely got his shoulder up. Perhaps a touch of miscommunication? I don’t know but, ending aside, I really enjoyed that one. I thought Espinoza was impressive and he had good chemistry with Lexx. Definitely a signing they can work with.

Afterwards, Espinoza tried to get the drop on Lexx but ‘The King of Pow’ dropped him with a big brainbuster. That’s what you get for messing with Chris Lexx!

“Crowley’s Gonna Kill You”

Another eerie video from The Crowleys aired, with images of missing person posters on trees, an empty chair, shots of Walker Hayes, the missing wrestler’s, T-shirt and a creepy down-tuned voice saying something about “Championship Wrestling”. Whatever it was saying, it can’t be good.

I’m really enjoying these little vignettes. What I like is that we don’t really know what The Crowleys are yet. There’s still a lot of the unknown around them, which is how supernatural characters should be treated, lest you become The Fiend and don’t know what the hell you’re meant to be anymore…

Precious vs. Mike Anthony

This one was set up by Precious trying to say sorry to Cassandra Golden, only for Cassandra to say he could make it up to her by wrestling the next person who appears to pull a Grind City Rumble number. Unluckily for Precious, it was the angry half of the SWE tag team champions who made the draw.

Precious had troubles taking off his vest, so it was never going to look optimistic for him, was it? The look on Mike Anthony’s face as Precious went for a handshake could have stripped paint off walls. Which is why Precious wiping his hand over Anthony’s face wasn’t the smartest move.

Precious went on the attack but Anthony quickly took him down with a clothesline. The modified jawbreaker followed for the quick and easy 1-2-3.

Better luck next time, Precious.

Austin & Nikki Lane vs. Derrick King & Queen Katelynn (w/Van Vicious)

This one has been building up for weeks, and now the Lanes would finally get their hands on Derrick King…once he got in the ring; he seemed quite content to pick an argument with a young fan in a karate outfit at ringside. There’s something about heels picking fights with kids that always makes me laugh.

Austin looked to start things off with Derrick but King had second thoughts and tagged out, meaning the ladies would start things off instead. It didn’t take long for Van Vicious to get involved, grabbing Nikki’s leg in the corner. Unfortunately for the Royal Family, the ref saw and sent Van packing from ringside and all the way to the back! That suited the Lane’s just fine, as Nikki leapt on Katelynn with a Thez Press and pounded away at her before driving her face into the mat from the second turnbuckle.

When we returned from a break, Austin Lane looked to square off with Derrick again, but King once more tagged out. As Lane turned around to tag in Nikki, Katelynn took out his knee from behind and tagged in Derrick to pounce on him. Working the leg, King left Austin Lane in agony as he used his cheap advantage to keep his rival down. Lane surprised King with a DDT and both men crawled to their corners to make the tag.

Nikki nailed Katelynn with a series of clotheslines as she fired into the ring, before stomping on Derrick on the mat. Derrick went to suplex Nikki but Austin cut him off with some big fists before taking him out with a big knee to the face. In the meantime, Nikki hooked Katelynn with a fisherman’s suplex for the pinfall victory.

Derrick King superkicks Nikki Lane
Credit: Dreadhead Kev

So: honour restored? Not quite. Derrick King laid out Austin at ringside with what appeared to be a shoe before sneaking back in the ring. As Nikki threw a couple of more kicks at Katelynn for good measure, King measured her up and nailed her with a nasty superkick. As Nikki lay unmoving on the mat, Austin crawled over to protect as Derrick took Katelynn away and laughed about what he did.

The absolute swines…

Norman Meklakov Over The Top Rope Challenge

Backstage, Norman explained he would give a preview of the Grind City Rumble and prove he could not be eliminated from that match. To prove it, he offered to accept a challenge from anyone in the back who believed they could throw him over the top rope.

Maxx Stone was the first to answer but he took a big spinebuster before being thrown over the top rope. Stone hung on and tried to head scissors Meklakov, but the big Russian just threw him like a piece of litter to the floor.

Carter Matthews was next, using flying forearms and dropkicks to try and knock Big Norm to the floor. He even tried to leap from the top, but Norman caught him and dropped him with the Full Nelson Slam before throwing him over the top. Next.

Jay Smooth took a pounding as soon as he entered the ring. He did manage a trio of dropkicks on Meklakov but it was useless—Meklakov just chucked him right over the top.

And then the music kicked in. SWOLE. SWOLE. SWOLE.

Justin Cole! We hadn’t seen him since he lost to Meklakov a couple of weeks back. Maybe Cole would be strong enough to eliminate the big Russian?

The pair exchanged fists before Cole charged, trying to knock Norman down. A spear finally did the job and when Meklakov finally got up, Cole did indeed send him straight to the outside. Meklakov was furious at ringside as the fans chanted for Cole to end the show…

Final Thoughts

This was a solid instalment of Championship Wrestling from Memphis that set up next week’s Grind City Rumble very, very well. Going into the match, we know there are going to be certain conflicts, with Brett Michaels and Alan Steel feuding, and Cole making it clear to Meklakov there’s only room for one big bull in the Memphis ring. That’s going to make the match more interesting in itself; not only is the Memphis Heritage title up for grabs but how will these feuds play out within the match?

Not only that, but The Skimahorns had a fun encounter with The Yung Goats, and Chris Lexx and Brandon Espinoza had a great match, ending excepted, which proved to be a great debut for Mr Espinoza.

I’m pumped up for the Grind City Rumble now and I hope you are too. I’ll see you next week, grapple fans, for more from the fastest hour in pro wrestling!

Written by Chris Flackett

Wrestling obsessed since '91. Lived through the Monday Night Wars and is still here to tell the tale. Major fan of Strong Style, technical and Super Jr. Wrestling, as well as big versatile hosses smacking the hell out of each other. Lives in Manchester, England.

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