June 4th, 2022
Atlantic City, New Jersey
1) Hoodfoot vs. Rina Yamashita - First Round Match
Perfect way to kick off the weekend. It’s my first time seeing Yamashita and she exceeded expectations. Hoodfoot has become a favorite of mine this year and he looked awesome here. He & Yamashita started at 100 and never hit the brakes. Just a great deathmatch that never slowed down, but was competent enough to make sense and not feel like a clusterfuck. Hoodfoot is good at that and clearly I’ve been sleeping on Yamashita because got damn. This ruled. Yamashita wins to advance.
Match rating - ***3/4
2) SLADE vs. Matt Tremont - First Round Match
Matt Tremont’s poor forehead, man.. this was another good match. Not on the level of the opener for me, but still great. Tremont is over as fuck and after the hype package they put together and the ovation he got during his entrance, the momentum definitely feels on his side. Which sucks in a way because I’ve been loving Slade lately so seeing him lose here was a bummer, but by the end of it, I was happy to see Tremont moving forward.
Match rating - ***1/2
3) Shane Mercer vs. Toru Suguira - First Round Match
Suguira’s energy is the first thing that stood out here. What a feeling he brought to the carousel room as he made his entrance. Unfortunately, the match doesn’t quite match that energy. It seemed like there may have been some miscommunications between Mercer & Suguira down the stretch that made for some awkward moments. By the end of things, that was the last thing on my mind though as the two traded insane spanish fly/flip things from the top turnbuckle. Just fucking bonkers.
Match rating - **1/2
4) Drew Parker vs. Cole Radrick - First Round Match
This is the match I was hoping for in the finals, but we got it here so I’m not complaining. It’s undoubtedly the match of the tournament. Radrick is so sensational right now and Parker is the best deathmatch wrestler in the world, so there was no way around this being awesome. Radrick’s style meshes so well with the deathmatch style he’s been working. That also just goes to show how much creativity he possesses. I think everyone knew Parker was advancing here, but Cole makes you believe.. or want to believe. You’re invested any time he’s in the ring. I’m so stoked I’ve been along for this run he’s been on because it rules. Parker, as usual, is at the top of his genre of pro-wres and absolutely tortured Radrick, dragging his already bloody back through broken glass shards on the floor and launching darts into his back. This was a spectacle and a great deathmatch. Parker wins and goes onto the semi-finals.
Match rating - ****1/4
5) AJ Gray (c) vs. Jordan Oliver vs. Sawyer Wreck vs. Lindsay Snow
This was a title defense for AJ. I walked in from intermission just as this was starting. It’s fine, but everyone was sort of worn out and the scramble the next night completely blew this one out of the water. It was cool seeing Lindsay Snow and Sawyer Wreck involved and that was probably the highlight for me. Your standard scramble, though. AJ retains.
Match rating - **1/2
6) Matt Tremont vs. Toru Suguira
As the night goes on, Tremont’s entrances and performances become more and more compelling. This started slow, but turned into an absolute war. The crowd is so into Tremont that makes things feel super special and Suguira also continued to impress. Tremont still had blood caked on his head from the match with SLADE. It was nasty. Tremont advances after a battle.
Match rating - ***
7) Drew Parker vs. Rina Yamashita - Semi Final Round Match
This is a dream match and it definitely lives up to expectations. Yamashita goes after the injured leg of Parker which I was shocked didn’t come into play before. For the most part, though, this is just straight up destruction. Another great performance from Yamashita who made me a huge fan on this weekend of seeing her for the first time. Parker advances and overcomes the odds of his injury once again as he is headed to the finals.
Match rating - ***1/2
Before the finals, the inductees of the Deathmatch Hall of Fame were introduced. Mad Man Pondo (in honor of JC Bailey), Toby Klein (with Deranged), Nick Mondo, & Wifebeater all come to the ring. It’s a great time until John Wayne Murdoch comes out to ruin the party. Wifebeater hits JWM with a trailer park slam off an Alex Colon distraction which rules. Colon hypes he & JWM’s Cage of Survival match which happens the next night.
8) Drew Parker vs. Matt Tremont - Tournament of Survival 7 Final Round Match
This had a BIG match feel from the jump. The facial expressions of both men, never taking an eye off one another. The streamers that poured down as Tremont made his entrance. Colon and Nick Mondo in the ring for the introductions. This was a perfect final. As a match, it didn’t top Parker/Radrick, but it was undoubtedly the best choice for a final. Parker starts with Kawada kicks to the gashed up head of Tremont and it is GROSS. The spots these two proceed to pull off left me breathless. There’s a scaffold at ringside and Parker throws poor Matt Tremont off of it and that shit hurt ME. Fuck. I really thought Tremont was winning this, so the back and forth and eventual finish was thrilling. In the end, Parker wins to become the Tournament of Survival 7 champion. What an awesome tournament.
Match rating - ****