#Preview: PROGRESS Chapter 96 – True Friends Stab You In The Front

On Sunday, October 13th PROGRESS is back in Manchester for Chapter 96 – True Friends Stab You In The Front. This is the first show since the landscape of PROGRESS was changed drastically at Alexandra Palace when four new champions were crowned. That has, naturally, shaped the card for Chapter 96, which we’ll take a look at now.

PROGRESS Unified Champion Eddie Dennis 

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The Pride of Wales captured his first singles gold in PROGRESS last month at Chapter 95. In order to do so, FSU partner Mark Andrews cracked David Starr with a steel chair. Dennis did not perform any moves in order to win, and the pair turned heel in the process. Although there hasn’t been an opponent named for Dennis’s Manchester appearance, you have to think that Starr and/or former champion Walter will be gunning for him.

I’ve got a funny feeling that Dennis won’t actually wrestle for a few shows yet. I’d expect Mandrews to be at the show too, causing trouble for anyone who tries to take a shot at the king.

Paul Robinson vs Travis Banks – Proteus Title Match

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Paul Robinson became the inaugural Proteus champion at Chapter 95 in an excellent Rumble match. The holder of the belt can choose the rules by which it is defended, and Robbo made his choice swiftly. Whilst he is the champion, the belt shall not be used as a weapon. And the only way to win a Proteus title match is by tap out or knock out. Oof!

Travis Banks is just the man to take on Robinson in his first defense; a man well versed in strong style and claiming PROGRESS championships. These two gents are sure to tear into one another, and I for one am really looking forward to it. You have to think that that beautiful new belt will be over Robbo’s shoulder for some time yet, however.

Prediction: Paul Robinson

Ilja Dragunov vs Cara Noir

True Friends Stab You In The Front
Photo / PROGRESS Wrestling

This my friends (whom I shall stab in the front), is a mouth-watering prospect. This year’s breakout star of the BritWres scene, Cara Noir, takes on last year’s breakout, Ilja Dragunov. This will be a beautiful, violent dance between two men who define strong style in 2019.

Strangely enough, part of the appeal of both men is that they tend to lose the majority of their matches after a valiant fight. See, Dragunov’s match against Cesaro at Takeover Cardiff, and Noir’s match with Pete Dunne at Chapter 95 for evidence. The only thing that’s certain with this one is that the match will be an absolute belter.

Prediction: Ilja Dragunov

Young Guns vs Pretty Deadly

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Two of the hottest young teams in the country make their main Chapter debuts in the next contest. Pretty Deadly take on Young Guns and the former in particular are very much ones to watch. Just last weekend, they made an appearance at the NXT UK tapings and they have appeared for many of the top companies in BritWres.

The Young Guns too come with a reputation as rising stars. Both lads have fantastic conditioning and should be well up to the task of making a great first impression here.

Prediction: Pretty Deadly

Roy Johnson vs TK Cooper

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This is an unexpected, but fascinating match up. ‘Big Wavy’ Roy Johnson takes on TK Cooper in a match that follows up on the Proteus Rumble from Chapter 95. The South Pacific Power Trip teamed to eliminate Johnson, before turning on leader Travis Banks. Johnson is out for revenge on TK, perhaps with a certain Kiwi Buzzsaw covering his back.

Cooper is a wrestler who has a lot more to offer PROGRESS than he has thus far. He’s had numerous match of the year candidates in RIPTIDE this year, for one. The same applies to Johnson, who has appeared incredibly sporadically for the company in recent years. It would be great to see both men use this contest to solidify their place as regulars.

Prediction: TK Cooper

Toni Storm vs Dani Luna

True Friends Stab You In The Front
Photo / PROGRESS Wrestling

I won’t lie; I’m disappointed that Meiko Satomura won’t be on hand for Chapter 96 True Friends Stab You In The Front. Whilst Toni Storm and Dani Luna have the potential to put on an excellent match, it’s far more enticing to see the Women’s title being defended.

That as may be, Storm and Luna should gel together well. Both aren’t averse to a good scrap, and they will presumably be fighting for a shot at the champ. Luna, through her dealings with Chris Brookes, has become an eccentric personality on the scene. Storm’s reputation precedes her, and it likes like she might be on a collision course with Satomura at Chapter 97.

Prediction: Toni Storm

Scotty Davis & Jordan Devlin vs Grizzled Young Veterans – Tag Title Match

True Friends Stab You In The Front
Photo / PROGRES Wrestling

Scotty Davis and Jordan Devlin shocked the Grizzled Young Veterans (and the PROGRESS Ultras) when they inserted themselves into the tag title match at Chapter 95. By virtue of Davis’s Natural Progression Series win, the Irishmen entered the match and claimed the tag titles from GYV.

Aussie Open’s Mark Davis is the man who tapped out, however, and so GYV have a genuine beef and claim for the belts. Davis is an absolutely tremendous professional wrestler, and we all know how good Devlin is by now. The match should be great, and Gibson is obviously a heat magnet, but I can only see one team winning.

Prediction: Jordan Devlin & Scotty Davis

Seems like we have a really good show lined up, then. I’ll be there live for this one, so feel free to buy me a pint if you see me at True Friends Stab You In The Front!