It’s 2017, a brand new year, and the fine folks at Dragon Pro Wrestling recently held their first show of the year.
I watched the show from the crowd with a bunch of people I worked with on a wrestling-themed film and they were easily the rowdiest people there. This show was at Rodney Parade again, but this time it was inside the actual building rather that the marquee for fear of it being as cold as it was at the last show in December.
The show opened with the main ring announcer, Ben, bringing out the new General Manager of Dragon Pro, Wild Boar, who spoke (Yes, Boar actually speaks… shocked me too) the praises of everyone at the Dragon Pro Academy who were helping out tonight and those competing tonight who have made bigger names for themselves in the British independent scene. Dragon Pro Wrestling truly is the future, and this event proved why.
Celtic Crown Women’s Championship
Jetta retained against Sierra Loxton
This opening match between these two women was a very nice way to start the show. The crowd overall seemed to favour The Freaky Princess over the champion. The champion had the experience edge over the still fairly fresh up and comer, holding her down with many different holds. But the enchanted one fought back all of Jetta’s attempt with hard hitting offence, nearly getting the win a few times. Jetta also had the victory close in her sights after her signature Backstabber, but Sierra was able to kick out of it.
In the end however, Jetta was able to retain her championship after Jetta showed everyone she would do anything to retain the title, including holding the ropes with her feet while the ref didn’t notice, to the crowd’s dismay. Still, a very fine match and I doubt this will be the last time Sierra goes after the Celtic Crown Championship.
Number 1 Contendership for the All Wales Championship – 6 Man Elimination Battle Royal
Matt Horgan defeats Owen Wall, Edwin Ricci, Karambre Jr, Cal Adams and Beano
First to enter was Owen Wall alongside Pure Breed’s mouthpiece, Merlin Obadiah Cambridge, who got on the mic to talk, or rather, he tried to, but the crowd would constantly boo him whenever he tried to talk. What I made out from what he said was that either Owen or Matt Horgan would walk away as the new number one contender. Edwin got a nice reaction, and even a bit of a different look, having a blonde streak through his hair and a little more facial hair. The Rookie of the Year 2016 Karambre Jr didn’t get a warm reception. Cal seemed to be a bit more chipper from his attitude change from last week as the people were happy to see him. Matt got a bad reception as well, except from Merlin, Owen and Karambre, who were all applauding the man. But the biggest reaction, at least from the film crew were for the Man Like Beano. Karambre saw them and just shook his head in disapproval. The masked marvel truly has a way with words.
The match itself was quite hectic, it took awhile to really get a grasp of what was happening, but the villainous Pure Breed and Karambre Jr teamed up several times to get the advantage over the fan favourites with dirty tactics and big strikes and other manoeuvres. Ed and Cal were more high risk in their offence, Cal was more of the striker, while Ed had more flash that worked in his favour several times. Beano had the crowd’s support with him as well as his buddy Sparky. There were a few few crazy moments, one of which involved a 4 man Suplex where Edwin, Cal, Beano and even Sparky suplexxed Horgan, Owen, Karambre, and even Merlin. Yes, Merlin actually got suplexed, and Newport rejoiced.
As the match went on, we started to see some eliminations happening, the first of which Cal as when he tried for a Double stomp from the top rope, Merlin got involved, and then The Pure Breed hit a Roundhouse Kick (Horgan) / Suplex (Owen) combo for the pinfall.
Cal Adams was eliminated
Owen was next to be eliminated after Beano rolled him up for the quick pin, which shocked the Pure Breed enough for both of them to beat down on the Badman after.
Owen Wall was eliminated
Karambre was eliminated next by Ricci after he hit him with a top rope Frog Splash.
Karambre Jr was eliminated
Ed would try to another Frog Splash later on, but he missed it, giving Matt the chance to hit a type of Kneeling Back Piledriver manouvre to get the pinfall.
Edwin Ricci was eliminated
It came down to Horgan and Beano at this point, and the people were determined to see Beano come out on top. Horgan did hit the same finish from earlier that eliminated Edwin, but Beano kicked out at 1, shocked many people. Beano soon after hit his ‘Wa You Sayin’ finisher, which is a Rope-Assisted STO type of move that’s the best way for me to describe that (I REALLY need to do more research into wrestling manoeuvres when I get spare time), but Merlin pulled the ref out of the ring before he count make the three count. Sparky was not letting this happen and started attacking The Pure Breed’s mouthpiece out of rage for his mucka Beano. But Owen Wall would appear again while the ref was down and attack Sparky. He also helped Horgan hit a Superkick/Suplex combo similar to earlier, and then Horgan hit a front version of his earlier finish for the pinfall victory.
Beano was eliminated. Matt Horgan wins.
Many weren’t too happy that Horgan won the match, whether it was the Pure Breed getting the victory, or Beano losing the match, they weren’t pleased.
Bishop defeats Josh Holly
Next up we had Bishop in a match against a fresh face for Dragon Pro. Josh Holly came out with lots of enthusiasm that the people returned to him, but Bishop, he seemed different from usual. And by that I mean he seemed to have this more Mob Boss type of entrance. He came to the ring in a blazer and shirt, like he wanted people to know he was more important than them. He took quite a while getting ready, as if he was taunting the newcomer in a sense that he was more powerful than him in ever way possible. Sadly in this case, that’s exactly what happened. Josh did have a few moments where he was able to fight off the intimidating Bishop, but sadly this wasn’t nearly enough to stop the onslaught that Bish was giving. He ended up getting the pinfall victory after hitting a Death Valley Driver.
Dragon Pro Tag Team Championship
The Brotherhood (Elijah Dahl & Joe Mezinger) defeats Brendan White & Oliver Satchwell w/ Liv Turner – NEW CHAMPIONS!
This was the second of three championship matches of the night, and it was a pretty action packed one. Before the match officially started, The Brotherhood ambushed the champions as they were hyping the crowd during their entrance. These tactics carried on throughout their offence in the match with the two using dirty double teaming and viscous displays of moves and strikes. Oliver was getting beat down on the most, though he would come back with his strong willpower and determination. Brendan was the muscle of the team as he would execute many powerful manoeuvres with great speed. He was close to getting the match won with his Side Slam on Joe, but it didn’t seal the deal. The ending came when Dahl went after the lovable Liv on the outside, distracting Brendan enough for Joe to hit a Corkscrew Suplex for the shocking pinfall victory.
The Brotherhood were ecstatic over their victory, and everyone else was not too pleased, one of these people worth mentioning, is Bronco Brendan White. After the match, his partner Oli tried to reassure him, but Brendan was not happy in the slightest. He pushed Satchwell away as Liv tried to calm him down, only to end up completely turning on their friendship by pushing Liv to the ground and attacking Oliver! Dragon Pro’s GM, Wild Boar appeared from the back to try and tried to calm him down as well, but Brendan hit a few big manoeuvres, leaving Satchwell beaten down, Liv completely at a loss, and Boar quite cross, especially after Brendan pushed him aside when Boar was in his way. Losing championship can sometimes bring out the bad side of people, and that looks like the case with Brendan White.
Next was a short intermission, during the end of which we were told that Oliver Satchwell was doing well and he would be able to greet fans after the show for the fans meet and greet that most of the fan favourites tend to stick around for.
Dean Winter defeats Gideon – Special Guest Referee: Mike Bird
The first match back from the intermission was a big one as it featured two goliaths in the despised Dean Winter, and the more favourable ‘Red Emperor’, Gideon. Mike Bird was also the special guess referee of this match, having a bit of a laugh with referee Huw by stripping him of his own top and wearing said top. Oh that Birdie, finding subtle ways to humiliate others for the case of his own amusement, and the amusement of others.
But still, he kept this match as down the line as the other officials did tonight, despite constant attempts from Dean who was getting in his face many times as well as yelling at the crowd whenever he felt the need. Gideon seemed much more respectful of he people though, and was looking to put Mr. Winter in his place. Both men displayed great feats of power and aggression that could have gone either way. Dean did hit a huge second rope Cross Body which seemed to have the match won, but he only pulled up Gideon before the three count was made. Not long after this the film crew by me started chanting ‘Bin Bag!’ at Dean due to the attire he was wearing. And after this came the line of the night from the man himself. ‘The only thing that belongs in the trash is your chants!’, and his facial expression was priceless. Oh Dean Winter, you are hard to like, but you are harder to hate. The end came after this when Dean got on the turnbuckle again and hit his ‘Winter Fall’ Diving Splash, getting the pinfall victory.
After the match, when you think Dean had his sick levels of fun, belittling the fans and Gideon, he got in Mike Bird’s face again, which just about sent Ginger Jesus over the edge. Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on who you ask, his buddy, Dragon Pro’s GM, Wild Boar came out again to hold him back as he yelled at Dean to head to the back. But he didn’t want to leave it there as he announced for the next Dragon Pro show, Dean Winter would go one on one with Mike Bird!
Oliver Sudden defeats #REG w/ The Reg-iment
The next match was one mostly for laughs, as it did involve ‘All Reg Everything’ and posy of pink clad lads, and Toon Town’s resident hero, Oliver Sudden. At the start of the match, Reg was kicked near in a body of the body that would make most men qwivver, but he seemed unfazed as he reveals to be wearing… protection. Don’t take that out of context, it was a codpiece, which his guys happy picked back up on the outside out of excitement… okay? I mean whatever floats their collective boats I suppose. They also did help out Reg a few times in the match when he was on the losing end, but OLIVER SUDDEN things didn’t look to good for him! (That was awful, I’m sorry) The comedic Sudden was able to fight back with his own unique brand of offence, he even ended up having Reg ride the ring ropes when he got himself stuck on them for a bit of comedy. The ending came when Sudden hit his ‘That’s All Folks’ Sitout Uranage finisher for the pinfall victory.
After this we got our raffle, which involved the regular prizes, one of which was the months free training with Dragon Pro Academy, and as of this show, the value of this was much higher than usual as they have made the move to a bigger location, but I’ll get to that later. One of the film crew actual won this, which made everyone near me going nuts for the guy. Lucky him. Then again I too won free training in the past so I won’t complain. I’m sure he’ll enjoy his free training whenever he decided to cash it in.
Main Event – All Wales Championship
Danny Jones retains against Big Grizzly
Big Grizzly came out to start the main event with the new Dragon Pro Tag Team Champions, The Brotherhood, and then the champion himself came out to his Attack! Pro theme and ‘Raving’ Danny Jones persona, showcasing some new merch in the process. (I see what you are doing there sir) And before the match started, it was announced that The Brotherhood for banned from ringside for the match. They were not too please, but Grizzly encouraged them to head to the back and he was confident he would reclaim his championship. They did comply after some coaxing, and we had our Main Event underway.
Much like their past encounters, lots happened here, maybe even too much to even record here without this article being any more long winded than it has been. But I can say there was a bit of outside brawling, some high risk moves by Dan, alongside his hybrid style, trying to balance against Grizz’ power and aggression. There were a few big moves Grizz missed and got hit with, such as missing a top rope Leg Drop, and being pushed off the top rope a second time and hit with a tornado DDT. Dan even managed to lift Grizz onto his shoulder and hit him with a GTS and then a running single knee, only to get a two count pin.
Slowly after this, the ref got bumped after Dan was pushed into him and Griz hit a Chokeslam on the champion. But as the ref was knocked down, he wasn’t able to start the pinfall count. The Brotherhood then reared their heads again, seemingly to attack the fan favourite Danny Jones, but they actually attacked their mentor, Big Grizzly! Dan saw this going on while the ref was down and attacked them, defending his opponent. Not long after Grizz made his way back up, along with the ref, Danny ended up getting the pinfall victory after a Small Package.
After the match, when people were thrilled at the result, Grizz got in his face, mentioning how Dan didn’t have to send off Dahl and Mezinger as he did, considering how he has acted for so long. Dan ended up offering a hand shake, but the film crew near me chanted for them to kiss, because you know, they are into that I guess (even if this is a kids show). To the surprise of everyone, Grizz ended up shaking his hand… HUGGED him, and he even, literally, LOCKED LIPS WITH THE MAN!! Who are you and what have you done with Big Grizzly?!?! And that’s how the show ended. What a genuinely strange way to start the year… ahhhh there it is, that reference… you know it would show up!
Now as I mentioned earlier, I did say something about the Dragon Pro Training Academy’s prices changing. This is mainly because the academy itself is moving/has moved (depending on if this reviews gets posted for the end of the week or not) from Newport to the Cathays Community Centre in Cardiff as of 26th February 2017. This news is truly one of the best things to happen for the Dragon Pro Wrestling Academy as a whole, as it shows the true hard work and dedication they have put in over the years. I will exclude myself from this seeing as I haven’t really been in nearly a year now due to studies, but with them moving much closer to my travel needs, as well as times of sessions being more suitable, this could give me the much needed kick up the backside to do more for myself again. Even if my fitness isn’t great right now, it’s better to go and get better, rather than to sit aside and ask myself ‘why?’. And the same applies to everyone who has ever wanted to get wrestling training from some of the best coaches in the Welsh wrestling scene, heck, the UK wrestling scene as a whole, and that’s not me pandering, it’s just true.
So I will end this review here with the contact social media information for all things Dragon Pro as well as their new training location and weekly timetable. So until the next review, keep safe and love wrestling!
Dragon Pro Wrestling Train Academy Info
Location: Cathays Community Centre
Sundays: 3pm-5pm beginners – 5pm-7pm advanced
Mondays: 8-10pm beginners
Tuesday: 8-10pm intermediate
Wednesday: 8-10pm women’s class
Thursday: 8-10pm advanced
Dragon Wrestling Pro Social Media
*Image credits go to Dragon Pro Wrestling/Turning Face Photography*