Sunday, March 20, 2022

GCW: Astronaut Review - March 12th, 2022

GCW Astronaut 
March 12th, 2022
Atlanta, Georgia - Center Stage 

I attended this last weekend and normally I’m too worn out to review shows I attend live, but I’m feeling like giving this a shot. 

1) AR Fox vs. Nick Wayne 

Getting to see AR Fox live has been one of my favorite things about going to so many GCW shows in the past year. He was one of my favorites when I first started watching the Indies like ten years ago, so it’s a nostalgic hit for me. Nick Wayne is basically a prodigy. A young man who signed a contract with AEW at 17 years old.. just insane. Much like this match. This was truly everything you’d expect in your head when seeing it on paper. They don’t go crazy with nearfalls and stuff, clearly saving some stuff considering they’re first on the card. I respect that though and this was a perfect opener because of how they worked it. Just a blast and a good showcase for both guys. Fox wins with the 450.

Match rating - ***

2) Gringo Loco vs. Ninja Mack 

Both of these guys are two of the hottest prospects on the scene right now, so you knew this would rule. They just do crazy shit and flip around and WE LOVE IT. The final spot with Gringo hitting the spinning sit out powerbomb thing off the top turnbuckle through a door in the ring was the best way to cap off this wild ass match. I could watch these two any day of the week. Gringo wins as we head further toward THE WRLD ON LUCHA. 

Match rating - ***1/4

3) Matt Cardona vs. Mike Jackson 

Cardona comes out with his NWA & Impact Titles. He cuts his usual awesome heel promo and continues to get a ton of heat from the GCW crowd. Jackson is the perfect opponent for Cardona here and they work a classic shitty heel vs. older veteran match with Cardona being a real dick to Jackson. Action Mike has a couple flurries that get the crowd going, though including a dive to the floor. Fun little 6 minute thingy. 

Match rating - **1/2 

After the match, Chris Dickinson shows up and tries to get Cardona to fight him now instead of waiting til Spring Break. Cardona retreats and Action Mike stops him in the entrance way and sends him back out to Dickinson. Dickinson cut a sick fiery promo here to hype the match for Spring Break. 

4) ACH vs. Tony Deppen 

Man.. Tony Deppen is growing on me, I think. Maybe it’s his entrance music.. I don’t know. But he’s a blast live. I wish ACH would have gotten a better reaction here, though. It kind of threw me off from my full interest in the match, as bad as that sounds. They work a solid match regardless cause I mean.. these guys are great. Crowd just wanted flips which was ANNOYING. But a good back and forth throughout none the less. Deppen gets a cheap victory and is booed out of the building.. sorta. 

Match rating - **3/4

5) Alex Colon vs. Jordan Oliver vs. Jimmy Lloyd vs. 1 Called Manders vs. Cole Radrick vs. Zenshi - Scramble Match 

This was a blast AS ALWAYS. Oliver hits an awesome moonsault off the railing on the stage to the floor. Colon was a maniac from bell to bell. Cole Radrick got a surprisingly huge pop, I guess I’m not the only person that he’s growing on.. especially after that death match he did a few weeks ago. Colon gets the victory and cuts a promo on John Wayne Murdoch heading toward their huge grudge match coming up at Spring Break. God I can’t wait for that shit. The main highlight for me here, though, was Zenshi who absolutely killed it. 

Match rating - **3/4 

6) Ash Bennett & Rico Gonzalez vs. Bobby Flaco & Kavron Kanyon 

This was just here to set up a Joey Janela run in where he destroys everyone and hypes his match with X-Pac further. These guys did get around 4 minutes to do their thing, though, before that. In Janela’s promo, he says if he hadn’t gotten thrown off the roof by Zandig years ago, there would be no AEW and no WWE Saudi Arabia deal LMAO. He shouts out Ted Turner & Cody Rhodes. Joey wants his flowers at spring break when he beats X-Pac.

7) Allie Katch vs. Jordynne Grace 

This was such a cool match to have on this card. I’ve never seen Jordynne Grace live so having it be at GCW against Allie Katch is pretty much the best possible scenario that I could think up. They have a great match here that lives up to the hype I had for it going in. Allie takes the win around the ten minute mark. 

Match rating - ***

8) AJ Gray (c) vs. Effy - GCW Extreme Title Match 

These are two my favorites! Seeing Effy live is always a heartwarming experience. This goes around 10 minutes and is largely tossing each other around very dangerously and hitting each other with an assortment of weapons. Nothing too crazy, but enough to send the crowd home happy that they got to see these two kings compete. AJ wins to retain his title.

Match rating - ***

9) Jonathan Gresham vs. Blake Christian

I can openly admit that I underestimated Blake Christian’s return to the Indies. Between this match and the match against Mike Bailey, a few weeks prior, he’s won me over. Here, he works more toward Gresham’s style, but he hangs right with him and is able to show off his abilities as well. The promo Christian cuts after the match topped it all off. It was almost more of a speech than a promo as Christian talked about the personal meaning behind  his catchphrase “All Heart”. The match itself was your current day standard Jon Gresham banger with holds & stalemates to start and flashy exchanges down the stretch. It was crisp, intense and honestly just lovely to watch. Pure wrestling at its finest, exactly what the ROH World Champion is known for and as a result, he comes out of this one on top. Match of the night.

Match rating - **** 

10) H8 Club (Nick Gage & Matt Tremont) vs. Second Gear Crew (Matthew Justice & Mance Warner)

This was Mancer’s first match back and man.. what a banger to come back in on. I wondered how rowdy this would get considered it’s one of the smaller GCW shows that I’ve been to, but these guys did not disappoint and honestly, I should’ve never doubted them. Seeing Nick Gage live is always a hell of an experience. Myself and my Up & Over Pod co-host Mike actually got the chance to meet Nick before the show at a meet & greet, which ruled. Pics of that can be found on the Twitter. I’m not enough of a mark to add that picture into this review. But yeah, these four went to absolute war here with Justice diving off the balcony at one point and Nick & Mance having a light tube showdown in the center of the ring. Tremont got a fork jabbed into his forehead by Warner in one of the grossest spots of the match and got nailed with a tube immediately after, to boot. Just.. wow. Insane shit here that ends in a no contest after one man from each team was pinned at the same time. 

Match rating - ***3/4

After the match, it’s announced that due to the result of this match, there will be a re-match at Spring Break in Dallas with The Briscoes also involved. AH SHIT. Can’t fucking wait for that one. I’ll be in Dallas all weekend so I’m very stoked to get to see the fallout from this unfold in person as well. 

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