The PROGRESS Prerogative – Chapter Three: Fifty Shades Of Pain

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Hey guys and gals! Welcome back to another edition of The PROGRESS Prerogative. I just want to thank everyone that sent me a message/DM to say how much they enjoyed it, and that includes some of the talent mentioned in the piece. Thanks folks, you’re words mean so much to me! Right in front of you is PROGRESS Wrestling’s Chapter Three: Fifty Shades Of Pain review, but before we start let’s fill you all in with some background information –

Another three months have passed since Chapter Two and again it features 18 wrestlers, with a few that never appeared again for the promotion. This was also the first time that a Progress Championship match never happened. It is also the last time that the BWC Scarlo Scholarship Championship would be held at a Progress show

Enough of the history lesson, here for your delectable pleasure is my review of PROGRESS Wrestling Chapter Three: Fifty Shades Of Pain…..

Chapter Three: Fifty Shades Of Pain
Sunday September 30 2012
The Garage, Islington, London

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Noam Dar vs Paul Robinson

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One of my most favorite wrestlers right now, Paul Robinson, making his PROGRESS debut here against the multi-talented (and super young) Noam Dar. Robbo was just a few months away from teaming with somebody called Will Ospreay and forming the Swords Of Essex, but you can see Will’s influence on his style right here, with the multiple kip up spot being front and center. Even though at this point he’s a nine-year veteran!

Dar again was the heel here due to his Scottish-ness (it really does make us down south sound a bit racist, but we’re not, I promise!), and due to his earlier showings in the last two chapters, made all the headway here. In charge from the first bell to the last, Dar was pretty much all over Robbo.

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While Paul was using his extensive kickboxing background, Noam was using his head and superior wrestling ability to stay on top, targeting his legs in readiness for his finisher, the Champagne Super Knee Bar. Robbo did have his moments though, including a great Blue Thunder Bomb that drew a near fall.

But in the end, it was all for naught, as Dar slapped on his knee bar finisher and made Paul tap out.

Winner – Noam Dar

BWC Scarlo Scholarship Championship
Mark Andrews (c) vs Xander Cooper

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As I mentioned above, this would be the last time that this championship would be defended at a PROGRESS event and ties up with a neat little bow the story of Andrews and Cooper over the last six months when Xander lost the belt to Mark at a non-PROGRESS show.An old fashioned slow technical start to the match, with both men showing just how proficient they are. Then all of a sudden Andrews took a hard knee to the face while performing a sunset flip. Looked nasty! The pace then changed into high gear as each big risky move was followed by another big risky move.

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But it was Andrews that picked up the decisive victory with a beautiful shooting star press from the top turnbuckle. Even back then you could see just how good Mark Andrews would become.

Winner – And STILLLLL BWC Scarlo Scholarship Champion, Mark Andrews

Jimmy Havoc vs Jon Ryan

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Teacher versus student in this matchup as Jimmy took on his mentor Jon Ryan. The tagline to this match was “strictly no blood, no hardcore” which played up to Jimmy’s deathmatch wrestling background. You can kinda see what’s going to happen next….

A few takeovers, some fists, a tope suicido to the outside from Havoc….and a frying pan shot to the head from Ryan to cause the DQ finish! He then throws more objects into the ring as a bloody Havoc begs for a no DQ match between the two. It’s promptly given and it’s on like Donkey Kong!

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It’s very difficult to write about a Havoc deathmatch as if you can think it, he did it. And with Jon Ryan just as sadistic….you can see where I’m going with this.

Singapore canes, baking trays, cheese graters, ironing boards…..BARBED WIRE BOARDS!!! Seriously this match was completely mental, and if it were any other men I would have given this match a dud. But the fact that both of these men have been around each other for so many years at this point, makes the story so much more poignant.

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Seeing Ryan throw Havoc through the barbed wire board to pick up the win was perfect booking. It made Jimmy everyone’s favorite underdog going forward, and made his eventual turn to the dark side so much better.

Winner – Jon Ryan

RJ Singh vs Rob Cage

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I have to begin this by asking possibly the biggest question of the day…..WHAT IN THE BLUE HELL IS RJ WEARING?!?! Is he a Honky Tonk tribute act? Does he have a deep rooted affection for Elvis?

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With that out the way (sorry RJ, I couldn’t resist!) I’ll get on with the match itself. And in all honesty, it wasn’t a bad little match. Singh looking for his Ethnic Submission while Cage was doing his level best to soften RJ up with his physical style.

A great counter of Singh’s submission into an electric chair drop looked crisp and different, while a lungblower from Cage onto RJ looked very painful and set up his future attacks on Singh’s midsection. But with his entourage in tow, this match was always RJ’s to win.

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A Shining Wizard by Cage lead to a pinfall attempt, which was broken up by the entourage (how wasn’t this a DQ??) and he was then slapped into the Ethnic Submission for the tainted win.

Winner – RJ Singh

El Ligero & Nathan Cruz vs Dave Mastiff & Greg Burridge
Special Guest Referee – Marty Scurll

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Today’s main event has the PROGRESS champion and the number one contender teaming up to take on the debuting Dave Mastiff and Greg Burridge. It’s very strange to see the three founding members of the Origin here way back when.

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Inserting Marty as special referee keeps him in the main event scene while pushing Mastiff straight to the top. Good booking there Jim, Jon, and Glen.

The tension between Cruz and Ligero is there to see from the get-go. With Ligs tagging out immediately as Burridge entered the ring. The size advantage definitely went to Mastiff and Burridge, they’re easily the bigger and stronger team of the two. Which is why Champ & Challenger grounded the larger pair to the canvas.

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Burridge looked every bit a future star here, and it’s a shame that he never featured again for PROGRESS after this show. He really did look great here, but he soon went on to become a stunt person and the head trainer of the London School Of Lucha Libre. It wasn’t all downhill afterward.

Marty played the scorned former contender to a tee, especially when he took his time to count any pinfall attempt from Cruz and Ligero. Playing a “heel” referee, or any other character of authority, while clearly not a heel is a talent.

True to recent form, Ligero left Cruz high and dry at the finish of the match. Cruz was looking to tag in Ligs, but he jumped down from the apron and walked to the back. Which left him at the hands of Burridge and Mastiff, which wasn’t the best thing for Nathan really. A huge running cannonball in the corner from Mastiff gave him a dream start in PROGRESS and gave Greg a great sendoff.

Winners – Dave Mastiff & Greg Burridge

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Again a much-improved PROGRESS show, even without a PROGRESS title match on the card. Luckily it would only be two months until PROGRESS would be back at The Garage for Chapter Four. And as always, you lucky lot only have to wait until next Monday to read all about it!

As always you can hit me up on social media if you want to talk all things wrestling. I can be found via the links below. So until next week…..ADIOS!

Mark Blake Facebook – MarkBlakeSmart
Mark Blake Twitter – @Smart_Mark_B