MLW starts 2020 in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, deep in the heart of Texas. Their first event of the year is Zero Hour. The partnership with AAA is beginning to bear fruit, as several luchadors will appear representing them at the event. There are also several grudge matches, such as that between Ross Von Erich and Tom Lawlor. Both the National Openweight Championship and the World Heavyweight Championship are going to be defended as well. This is also an MLW Fusion television taping, so if you are unable to see the show live, the matches will be appearing on the show in the near future.
Gino Medina vs. Septimo Dragon w/Konnan
“El Intocable” Gino Medina is currently undefeated in MLW. However, he’s made an enemy out of Konnan. Konnan has taken up the mantle of a mentor in the last era of his career, and he had tried to do that with Gino. The second-generation Medina would rebuff him though and shrug off Konnan’s sage advice. Now he will face Septimo Dragon from AAA, who will have Konnan at his side. Dragon has appeared for MLW twice in the past but has yet to score a victory. At Zero Hour, he would like to not only teach Gino Medina a lesson but get a win as well.
Dominic Garrini vs. Zenshi
In an epic clash of styles, the Crippler of Canton, Ohio, and practitioner of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will take on the lucha libre superhero Zenshi. Despite his heavy combat experience and undefeated streak in BJJ fights, Garrini hasn’t seen a lot of victories in MLW. His only singles win to date happened in his debut back in September. Zenshi also has been on a losing spell, having won his last match in the league in July. Dominic has proven skilled in tag team competition; he is known as one half of Violence is Forever/Sadkampf with Kevin Ku. He’s also found success teaming with Douglas James in MLW. Both of these men take their crafts very seriously, despite the vast differences between them. Who will finally get some momentum going at the first event of 2020?
Erick Stevens vs. Douglas James
MLW management had problems trying to secure an opponent for Erick Stevens at Zero Hour. Stevens, a 17-year veteran, is making his MLW debut following a return to the sport after a 9-year absence. Before his hiatus, Stevens was a regular for Ring of Honor where he was part of the Embassy. He’s also appeared for wXw, FIP, and Pro Wrestling RIOT in his native Florida. The man to step up the plate to take on the dangerous newcomer is Iron Heart Douglas James. James himself still fairly new in MLW has yet to capture a singles victory. Despite this, he’s impressed both league officials and his opponents, including Timothy Thatcher. This will certainly be a very intense clash between two striking specialists. Both have a background in martial arts and kickboxing.
Richard Holliday vs. Savio Vega
Savio Vega is out for revenge with Richard Holliday of The Dynasty in his sights. Vega’s history with The Dynasty goes back to his MLW debut in July 2019. He took on the National Openweight Champion, Alex Hammerstone in a losing effort. During this match, Vega would be seriously injured and he narrowly missed having to retire from these injuries. He returned to competition in MLW three months later, and now he finally gets his hands on a member of The Dynasty. As usual, Holliday is not worried nor intimidated by the Puerto Rican legend. With the overarching confidence, youth and speed on his side, Holliday is sure of his victory. However, he’s never tangled with an opponent this experienced or powerful before. This could prove to be a very difficult challenge for the Air Pod God at Zero Hour.
Marshall Von Erich vs. MJF
Speaking of The Dynasty, MJF will also be in action at Zero Hour. He will be taking on Marshall Von Erich, one half of the current MLW World Tag Team Champions. Marshall and his brother, Ross, captured these titles at MLW Saturday Night Superfight from MJF and Richard Holliday. Since that loss, MJF and company have been wallowing. He also claims that the iron claw Marshall applied to his face disfigured him to the point of needing cosmetic surgery. So now MJF will have the chance to put up or finally shut up. Should MJF defeat Marshall, The Dynasty will receive a World Tag Team Championship match. However, if Marshall wins, then MJF can not challenge The Von Erichs again for the tag titles. Also against Marshall is the fact that potentially Holliday and Hammerstone will be afoot, as well as Tom Lawlor.
Ross Von Erich vs. “Filthy” Tom Lawlor
Tom Lawlor will be going one-on-one with Marshall’s brother, Ross Von Erich. Lawlor called out any member of the Von Erich family previously. In episode 91 of MLW Fusion, he handily defeated Rip Von Erich in a parody. Rip was portrayed by CZW regular Kit Osbourne. Now in Von Erich Country, Lawlor will face a real member of the legendary family. The cocky former World Champion boasts that he will show Texas the true colors of the Von Erichs. Ross will have one goal in mind and that’s revenge. Lawlor took the Von Erichs under his wing when they arrived in MLW. Then as soon as he had no further use of their presence, he betrayed them on Thanksgiving night. Lawlor is a tough competitor with his MMA and mat wrestling background. However, there is no better motivator than revenge for your family.
Triple Threat Tag Team Match
Drago & Puma King vs. Injustice (Kotto Brazil & Jordan Oliver) vs. Hijo de LA Park & Taurus w/ Salina de la Renta
More stars of AAA will be in action at Zero Hour! Drago and Puma King will team up for triple threat tag team action. This will be Drago’s first appearance for MLW since 2018. These ferocious luchadors will take on Kotto Brazil and Jordan Oliver of Injustice, and Hijo de LA Park and Taurus of Promociones Dorado. We last saw Taurus at Intimidation Games in March 2019. Salina de la Renta recruited the hulking Taurus to team with the son of her destroyer, LA Park. Brazil and Oliver are adamant that they deserve a tag team title shot. Should the manage to put down two pairs of the world’s finest luchadors, they certainly will make a strong case for MLW management.
No Holds Barred Fight
Davey Boy Smith Jr. vs. Simon Gotch
Davey Boy Smith Jr. has had a bone to pick with CONTRA Unit ever since they attacked his cousin, Teddy Hart, back in November. Never having had an opportunity to seek revenge, Smith took the opportunity Zero Hour presented to challenge Simon Gotch. Smith, who is heavily involved in mixed martial arts training, selected a no holds barred fight. This no ropes, no rules encounter can only be won by knockout or submission. This is what predated what we know as the modern sport of MMA. Gotch is well-versed and a skilled technical grappler. Prior to joining up with CONTRA Unit, Simon Gotch would hold prizefight matches. He would put up money of his own to anyone who could defeat him. The crafty Gotch would go undefeated in this…until faced with the challenge of Ace Romero. Gotch is also a twisted individual, and other members of CONTRA are sure to be around for their brother.
No Ropes Barbed Wire Match
Jimmy Havoc vs. Mance Warner
The war between Jimmy Havoc and Mance Warner has raged throughout the League for months. During it, the level of violence needed to satiate their hatred of the other has risen to critical mass. They’ve done regular matches, they’ve done a Stairway to Hell match, they’ve had a falls count anywhere match. Nothing can seem to end this blood feud. One of the favored weapons of England’s Most Dangerous Man is barbed wire and he’s used it against Warner several times. So when the ropes come down in Dallas, barbed wire will go up in its place. For the first time in over 15 years, MLW will host a barbed wire match between these two. Traditionally it is a staple in Japanese deathmatch promotions, in which Havoc is well versed. Warner, of course, has that devil may care attitude and will do whatever to himself in order to finally shake off the specter of Jimmy Havoc.
National Openweight Championship Match
Alex Hammerstone (c) vs. Aerostar
Alex Hammerstone will defend his National Openweight Championship against the final representative of AAA, Aerostar. Aerostar, like Drago, is perhaps best known to American fans from Lucha Underground. This compact lucha astronaut has a much more far-reaching career than that though. For over 15 years he’s been soaring the skies and now he has a shot at gold in MLW. Hammerstone may not be big on the “flippy boy” style of wrestling, but he is agile and quick for his large frame. He’s also extremely powerful and this will provide a great contrast to Aerostar and his speed.
World Heavyweight Championship Match
Jacob Fatu (c) vs. Brian Pillman Jr.
Like Davey Boy Smith Jr., Brian Pillman Jr. has unfinished business with CONTRA Unit. The Hart Foundation members still are looking to get back at them for the attack on their former member Teddy Hart. Pillman also had an exceptional showing in the Opera Cup 2019 tournament, coming up just short against Smith. He continued to grow throughout 2019 after being named Rookie of the Year in 2018. Now the young Pillman will finally have the title shot he’s been asking for. While many would think he would probably fit better in challenging for the MLW Middleweight Championship; Pillman does not want to be defined in a single weight class. It was also one career milestone his father was unable to reach, world champion. Sadly for him, he’s got to take on the Samoan Destroyer of CONTRA, Jacob Fatu. Ever since dethroning Tom Lawlor, he’s been on an increased violent tear to defend his title. Fatu will also have Josef Samael at his side, which always proves to add even more challenges for anyone.
Also signed to appear for MLW Zero Hour is the MLW Middleweight Champion, Myron Reed, and The Professional Low-Ki. Alicia Atout will also be part of the action along with Rich Bocchini and AJ Kirsch. Very limited tickets do remain available for this event, check that out at MLWDallas.com. If you aren’t in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, these matches will all be part of upcoming episodes of MLW Fusion. This airs weekly on BeINSports, YouTube, and Fite.TV. You can also catch up on episodes with our weekly review of the program titled The Recall.
Originally written by Brandi Wagner