Preview: PWG Neon Knights (2/16/18)

Coming off of PWG Mystery Vortex last month there is a new Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG) champion after Chuck Taylor pinned Ricochet in a Guerilla Warfare match. It happened to be Ricochet’s final PWG match as he appeared at NXT Takeover: Philadelphia for WWE later in January. Now it’s a match between Best Friends for the top prize in the California company in the main event and a marvelous line-up to top off the evening at PWG Neon Knights this Friday, February 16. With only six matches, and missing regular talent like The Young Bucks, this is still a stacked event featuring the best from the United Kingdom, Australia and North America. Flip Gordon will be making his debut at Neon Knights and David Starr will compete in his second ever PWG match. Let’s take a look at the full announced card for this evening in Reseda, California.

Adam Brooks vs. Matt Sydal

Adam Brooks has made his was from Australia to the North American and United Kingdom independent wrestling scene in a big way, with matches against fellow Aussie Jonah Rock, Austin Aries, Mark Haskins and Will Ospreay. Brooks vs. Ospreay at PROGRESS Wrestling Chapter 61 last month was one of the most amazing bouts of both men’s careers so far and Brooks is looking to carry the momentum against a savvy veteran. Matt Sydal is currently in the mix in Impact Wrestling and was just the Impact Grand champion, but he has been a PWG mainstay for years now. Sydal made his debut at the 2014 Battle Of Los Angeles tournament and has competed in that tournament more than any other wrestler in the companies history. This match is guaranteed to be filled with breathtaking dives to the floor and high-risk moves like Brooks’ Canadian Destroyer on the apron. Sydal has the experience edge but Brooks is already one of the best heels today, using his arrogance to infuriate his opponent to the point where they keep their eye off the prize and Brooks takes advantage. If Adam Brooks is able to avoid the amazing Shooting Star Press of Matt Sydal, he can capitalize with a Swanton or even win by manipulating the referee and using a rollup like he has done lately.

“The Product” David Starr vs. “The Kiwi Buzzsaw” Travis Banks

This would make for a great PROGRESS World championship match since both compete there regularly and Travis Banks is their World champion. Starr made his PWG debut at Mystery Vortex last month against Fred Yehi and he has a busy schedule ahead of him. Along with Starr’s dates in wXw in Germany he will wrestle Zack Sabre Jr on March 3 for Over The Top Wrestling (OTT) and wrestle for the RevPro Cruiserweight championship on February 15. “The Product” is easily one of the most entertaining to watch with his unique offense and innovation like the Brainbuster over the knee. There should be lots of counters in this match because “The Kiwi Buzzsaw” wrestles at such a fast pace, there are springboards one second and a submission hold the next. Starr could become a main fixture in PWG with a gradual climb to the top, but so could Banks. David Starr could have a great match with a broomstick but he gets one of the best in the United Kingdom and Starr should get the victory. PWG would be wise to push forward with Starr in the main events because of his ability to make you love him with his endless catchphrases and theme song, or loathe him for his attitude and cheap ways out.

Flip Gordon vs. Zack Sabre Jr

Flip Gordon has only been wrestling since 2015 but that doesn’t change the fact that he could surprise Sabre by handing him a loss in Flip’s PWG debut. Ever since Ring Of Honor signed Flip Gordon last year, he has exponentially more eyes on him and has become a regular on Being The Elite, the YouTube show for Bullet Club’s Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks. There is sure to be a moment where Gordon goes for one too many flashy moves like his constant kip-up’s and Sabre will catch his arm violently in a submission hold. The fact is Zack Sabre Jr has so many ways to win a match that Flip Gordon is going to be on his best and think two steps ahead. This match hasn’t been booked anywhere else and this is a big chance for Flip Gordon to impress even more than he has against Marty Scurll and Punishment Martinez. Every scenario really spells doom for Flip Gordon even though his future is very bright. Anything off the top rope could be turned into further leverage for Sabre if it’s countered and lead to Gordon submitting in this one.

Dalton Castle vs. “The Bad Boy” Joey Janela

Even Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer has noted how much Joey Janela has brought his best to PWG and blown away expectations. Janela has earned his hardcore reputation in Combat Zone Wrestling (CZW) where he was famously thrown off a roof into a truck on fire with barbed wire by Dan Zandig and has wrestled there for years since. These are the lengths Janela goes to entertain and the PWG die-hards love to see a new face rise to the top. The flamboyant ROH World champion never fails to have the most spectacular entrance and provide some comedy with The Boys at his side. This should be a mixture of Castle’s brand of entertainment and “The Bad Boy” Janela’s brawling. This may be the unexpected the match of the night with lots of near-falls, action on the floor and still leaving the fans wanting more. Castle gets the Bangarang reversed and Janela wins with a reverse double stomp off the top rope in this prediction.

“The King Of Bros” Matt Riddle vs. “Limitless” Keith Lee

Matt Riddle and Keith Lee both compete for EVOLVE Wrestling as top stars and Keith Lee recently dethroned “The King Of Bros” for the WWN Live championship in a fantastic Last Man Standing Match. This match was originally booked last year but instead Matt Riddle and Jeff Cobb (The Chosen Bros) received PWG tag team championship matches and won the titles. Now the crowd will be split in the middle with favorite Matt Riddle trying to tap out and out wrestle rising heavyweight heavy-hitter Keith Lee. If this is anything like past bouts this will be a special match with high-impact moves on the apron and off the top rope. Keith Lee can perform a moonsault at 300 pounds but he could be grounded in the end. If Riddle can stay away from a chop-fest and lock in the Bro-Mission it could be game over but smart money says Keith Lee lifts Riddle up for Ground Zero and the three-count.

PWG World Championship Match: Chuck Taylor (C) vs. Trent?

“Chuckie T” has become a two-time PWG champion after defeating Ricochet on his way out of the company and Taylor has proven he will go to any lengths to be the champion. After enduring thumbtacks, tables and ten years of blood and sweat in PWG he is still the funniest man in pro wrestling with the edge and experience to win on any given night. The Best Friends starting teaming in 2013 when Trent Barreta left WWE and their friendship has taken them all the way to the 2017 New Japan Pro Wrestling World Tag League. Fans have witnessed the ascension from mid-carder to NJPW heavyweight hero. There will be teasing of ending the friendship with the gold on the line and Trent need to turn up the heat if he wants to end Taylor’s reign early. We should expect wild moments like an Awful Waffle or Dude-Buster off the top rope. Chuck Taylor retains in a match that will be remembered fondly by the end of the year in the final prediction.