At SHIMMER last month, we saw Evie and Kimber Lee earn their roster spots and Jessicka Havok take her spot, whether we liked it or not. We saw Serena Deeb and Madison Eagles make their first trip back to Berwyn after long absences due to injury, and they did not miss a beat. We saw Allysin Kay TwitPic mid-match. We saw Mercedes Martinez and Ayako Hamada try their absolute best to destroy each other. We saw one of the most wild, goofy, amazing spectacles of a four-way match that wrestling has seen. We saw Nicole Matthews and Portia Perez cheat and cheat and cheat and cheat and cheat and be dicks. We saw Cheerleader Melissa take a very dark turn as she began her second reign as champion. We saw that the Global Green Gangsters, Kellie Skater and Tomoka Nakagawa, truly “Got this.” We saw the end of an era as Allison Danger, one of the founders of the company and a pioneer in the world of “American joshi” wrestling, compete in the final match of her career.
This is the first of our four part gallery for the SHIMMER weekend, enjoy.
Here’s our final gallery from the most recent SHIMMER tapings. This was the one where Allysin Kay, as she long ago prophesized, got in the ring with The World Famous Kana (although rumor has it she’s still looking forward to a one-on-one confrontation). Also, Athena continued making her case that she is the best by taking on the best in Ayako Hamada. All this, and lots of ninjas. Enjoy!
SHIMMER Volume 50 saw the cross-generational Joshi dream match of Kana versus Ayako Hamada come to American soil, in what is now largely considered, “the best fucking match ever.” There was also the welcome return of SHIMMER original Lexie Fyfe, who looked fantastic in the main event elimination match. Please enjoy our photos, volume 51 and 52 are coming soon!
Greg, boss that he is, attended yet another three day international wrestling summit with the AAW/SHIMMER Weekend. Here’s his wonderful photos from the first of the four SHIMMER shows. This was the one where Athena found herself in the main event, Courtney Rush lost herself in the past, and, delivering on months of trash talk, Portia Perez actually, finally, for real beat Kana. Enjoy!
If the incredibly talented roster, amazing matches and awesome fans aren’t reasons enough to love Cleveland’s greatest wrestling promotion, Absolute Intense Wrestling, the fact that they regularly put on a women’s centric wrestling show should just about do it. In its Girls Night Out series, AIW brings the very best female wrestlers to compete in Cleveland, ranging from up-and-coming talents like Miss Heidi, K.C. and Latasha all the way to established ring veterans like the incomparable Sara Del Rey.
Fany promotions, in spite of a wealth of popular, skilled talent available don’t even book a single woman’s match at any given show, much less bank an entire show around women wrestling. AIW is the company that does this. And they have done this five times.
Let’s take a look at what kind of awesomeness they had prepared (and believe you me, awesomeness was brought).
Note: If you don’t want to be spoiled, you can download and watch the DVD of this show right now here in MP4 format at Smart Mark Video (or order the DVD). Then come back and check out Wayne Palmer’s awesome pictures.
AIW: Girls’ Night Out 5
January 29th, 2012
a. The Chad defeated The Duke with The Mercy Kill – The night started with three pre-show matches, all dude wrestlers (known as “Guys Night Out”). In the first, The Chad, with Chest Flexor Industries (including Dave Potato in a laugh-inducing neck brace, clearly showing the ill effects a pissed-off Johnny Gargano had on his health) met The Duke in a Hell On Earth rematch.
It was a solid matchup, comprised mostly of holds and grappling and the occasional chop for good measure. Duke held most of the control throughout, right up until Dave the Mashed Potato got all in the ref’s business so Chad could get in a sick Mercy Kill on Duke for the win.
b. Louis Lyndon defeated Façade – FI stayed ringside and waited for Lyndon, who the crowd greeted with a “You sold out” chant.
Façade and Lyndon were all over this ring with some really solid back and forth, perhaps led slightly by Façade with some huge kicks and an excellent springboard moonsault. Lyndon had some nice kicks for himself, and then there was Flexxor’s crew interfering at every other opportunity, trying to distract Façade or the ref.
It looked like Façade had this one down, but somehow Lyndon managed to sneak in out of nowhere for a roll-up and pin Façade for three. He always seems to get those sneaky pins that you never realize until his music hits and you’re going “Wait… what? When did that happen?”
c. Eric Ryan defeated Rickey Shane Page via submission with the Koji Clutch – This match started out with such a loud and equally split chant for both guys that they had to stop and stare at the loudest region of the audience. When they finally did start the match, the action absolutely did not let up for one second.
Eric Ryan was everywhere, leaping off turnbuckles for moonsaults and a seriously excellent coast-to-coast towards the end. Of course, RSP is a boss and didn’t let that stop him, even going so far as to actually catch Ryan in midair during that moonsault and countering with slams left and right
Ryan’s more than just flashy leaps though, as he utilized numerous submission maneuvers throughout, and while RSP did his best to stand up out of Ryan’s holds, but was unable, giving him the win.
Spectacular match. Can’t go wrong with these two.
Afterwards, Eric Ryan took the mic and challenged Shiima Xion for the Absolute Title at Gauntlet for the Gold in March, so that should be awesome.
After a brief interlude, Girls’ Night Out proper started in full.
1. Marti Belle defeated Mia Yim with an Angel’s Wings – Chest Flexor Industries were out at ringside, yet again, looking out for Mia Yim. Not that she needed any help, as she spent a comfortable amount of time kicking Marti Belle all around the ring. Marti didn’t take that for very long, and back just as hard with some seriously huge kicks of her own, not to mention some awesome slams and a seriously gorgeous ‘rana, which helped her secure the win.
It was quite surprising to see a match involving CFI and no interference. I guess it was a test for Mia, one she failed. After the match Louis Lyndon and Flexor himself climbed into the ring to berate Mia for losing to Marti, eventually holding her as Allysin Kay, another CFI member and all-around badass lady (as will be evidenced later) yelled at her and then smacked her across the face. Mia was dragged backstage and the tone was set for the rest of the show.
Cherry Bomb’s career has been on a steady incline for the past few years. She’s firmly established herself as the Sovereign ruler of Ontario wrestling by holding titles in two companies and outright dominating a third. She also branched out across the globe, appearing in places like SHIMMER, WSU, and AIW. And, by the way, she toured Japan, facing the likes of Madison Eagles and Yoshiko Tamura. As 2012 begins, Cherry has her sights set on establishing herself as more than just an up-and-comer. She’s a match away from an AIW title shot, featured in highly touted major motion picture, and managing to stay one step ahead of her nemesis Courtney Rush. Hello world, here’s your Cherry Bomb.
Photos courtesy Tabercil Whom. See his amazing collection of photographs here.
What do you love about wrestling that’s made you spend the past seven years of your life doing it?
Wrestling holds a very special place in my heart. I lost my dad at a very young age and wrestling was something we used to watch together. I remember being a kid and going to watch live events with him, and they are some of my happiest memories. It wasn’t until I got older that I even considered becoming a wrestler, but the first time I stepped into a squared circle I felt a closeness to my dad. Wrestling is the glue that keeps us together.
You stay in incredible shape. What’s your training regimen like?
I bust my ass six days a week! Typically I lift weights, followed by 50 – 100 flights of stairs, and then I do between 100 – 300 free squats in a row. Never underestimate what regular squats can do for you, I challenge you to 100 – 200 everyday! Then I finish it all off with a cupcake; red velvet, obviously.
You’ve steadily been moving your way up the ranks of the wrestling scene. One of the matches where people really began to take notice of you was against Sara Del Rey and Femmes Fatales. Tell us what it was like taking on the woman many consider the best in North America.
To be honest, I felt honored. I had been wanting to wrestle her for a long time, and I feel like I walked away learning so much. She is such a talented wrestler, and constantly proves to everybody just how amazing she is. I would like the opportunity to face her again, as I feel I have come along way since September 2009.
This weekend is AIW’s Girl’s Night Out. You’ll be taking on Allysin Kay. What are your thoughts on her and this match? Are you worried she might bring a machete?
I have faced Allysin a few times in Canada, and first let me say this, what people say about her is true; she’s out of her fucking mind. Does that intimidate me? No. This match is for the number one contenders spot for the AIW Women’s Championship. I don’t care if she brings brass knucks, a machete, or a grenade launcher: I’m going to superkick her face off!
That night either Mickie Knuckles or Sara Del Rey will leave the building with the AIW Women’s Title. Which of those wrestlers would you rather face for the title and why?
I have my sights set on that title, so regardless of who walks away the champion on Sunday I will be ready to steal the gold.
Last year you had a historic opportunity in AIW to win the JWP Open-Weight title in its first defense outside of Japan. You faced Hailey Hatred, who was possibly the wrestler of the year in 2011. Not a lot of people gave you a chance going into that match, and most were shocked when ou refused to back down from her vicious strikes. Tell us what that match was like for you.
I knew going into this match that everyone was going to assume that I couldn’t hold my own against Hatred. I think I even took her by surprise when, no matter what she threw at me, I wouldn’t give up. I put my body through hell and kept asking for more. In the end I may not have walked away the champion, but I feel I earned the respect of Hailey, and the fans. I know that people underestimate me, and I love proving them all wrong.
You completed a stint in Japan in late 2010. Describe for us your experience on the tour. Would you consider following in Hailey’s footsteps and going back full time?
Wrestling in Japan was a goal of mine since I had started, so when I was asked I jumped on the opportunity. It was such an incredible experience. I had the opportunity to work for several different companies and train in the dojos. I learned SO much while I was over there, and have changed my style to incorporate a Joshi flare to it. The only thing that I really had to get used to was the food. I’m a vegetarian, so I pretty much lived off protein shakes and these little chocolate bears which I am now obsessed with. If given the opportunity I would definitely go back! I feel like I have grown since my last tour and have so much more to bring to the table.
Some huge news for you last year involved your role in the film Beat Down 1. First, tell us about the film and how you got involved.
The film is centered around a young girl named Fran, who wants to get involved in the wrestling business against her fathers wishes. I was contacted to audition for stunt work, but discovered that they were looking for someone to play the role of a rival wrestler. I had never acted before, but I figured it wouldn’t hurt to take a crack at it and I’m so thankful I did!
What about this particular film that made you want to try it?
I liked the fact that this was a film about wrestling, and more so that it was about women in wrestling. After meeting Deanne Foley, the director, and seeing how much research she had done, and how much respect she had for what we do, the film became very special to me.
You actually play “Cherry Bomb” in the film as well. Without giving too much away, are there going to be some differences between the real Cherry Bomb and the Big Screen version?
You may notice some small differences to say the least! Cherry in the film is very threatened by Fran. She is spiteful and nasty, and stops at nothing to make Fran’s life a living hell. She views Fran as an outsider who doesn’t deserve a spot, because she hasn’t earned it. There is one scene in particular where Fran shows up thinking she is going to wrestle a match, but instead is forced to sell t-shirts. Rather than accepting that that is part of paying her dues, she complains that it isn’t fair. Any wrestler will tell you the importance of paying your dues, it’s how this business operates, so I can see how that would rub Cherry the character the wrong way.
Another female wrestler who is in the film is someone you know very well, Courtney Rush. You guys have known each other for a while and were at one point friends. How did you come into contact with one another and what were your early matches with her like?
First of all, I wouldn’t say Courtney and I have ever been friends, acquaintances maybe, but I wouldn’t call her my friend. We had a few matches in 2009 and 2010, but to be honest we worked for different companies so I never paid too much attention to her until last year.
Of course these days Rush is waging a full on war against you. She’s become increasingly bitter, hostile, and aggressive. What exactly is her issue? Do you think some of Rush’s animosity comes from the fact that you were more heavily featured in the trailer that was released? Or the fact that she has trouble beating beat you fair and square with any of her 3,980 suplexes?
Courtney Rush is threatened by me, plain and simple. There can only be one person in the top spot in Ontario and I am standing there. It drives her insane that she has to go to such extreme measures to beat me. Everytime she loses she rattles off all of these excuses for why she lost, and how I did this and that; it’s pathetic really. Let’s be honest: Courtney Rush and her 3,980 suplexes don’t stand a chance against my BSE, and it’s eating her alive.
In spite of Rush’s efforts, you remain NSP’s Queen. You’re also TCW champion and CCW Champion. What can you tell fans about these companies, and what it means for you to be the top woman in each them?
Neo Spirit Pro Wrestling has been a top promotion in Ontario since 2001. The energy backstage at a NEO show is like no other company I have ever worked for. Every single person in the locker room is ready to give everything they have to make that show something special for the fans. “Showtime” Eric Young has even gone on record saying NEO is one of the best wrestling companies in the world! I am very proud to be a member of their roster.
I have been working for Classic Championship Wrestling since 2005, and was their first ever women’s champion. I love working for CCW because they put a serious emphasis on women’s wrestling. They usually have two women’s matches per card and they always have the women’s championship match as the semi-main event, which I think shows the importance of that title.
Tri-City Wrestling is a newer company out of Kitchener, Ontario. Much like CCW, this company focuses a lot on the women’s division. I have successfully defended my title against Allysin Kay and Courtney Rush who, by the way, didn’t take too kindly to that and attempted to beat me with a chair. What a surprise.
You’re often called a “rising star” and “one to watch” but at this point in your career are you anxious to start being considered a current top star, like a Portia Perez or LuFisto?
I already am a top star, the world just doesn’t know it yet.
You’re obviously a beautiful woman and committed to being a serious wrestler. Many people don’t think those two things go together. Do you ever have to deal with a conflict between embracing your femininity and being respected for your wrestling ability?
I am so sick and tired of people having this idea in their head that women wrestlers can’t look good and be good in the ring. I have worked incredibly hard to be where I am and I continue to work on my craft. Do I still enjoy getting my nails done, and going to the tanning salon? Yes! Do I love make up, shoes, and getting my hair done? Yes! This shouldn’t be a deciding factor on whether or not I am a good wrestler, and anybody that thinks that way is a close minded idiot.
What are some other future goals you have in wrestling? What promotions and places would you like to wrestle?
I would love to go back to SHIMMER and WSU, as both are great companies with women that I would love to compete with. One of my major goals is to obviously work for a company that allows me to do what I love for a living, but above all else, I would love for people to look at me one day and say “Cherry Bomb, she is a good wrestler.” Not a good “women’s wrestler,” a good wrestler, period.
What’s Cherry Bomb like away from the ring? What sort of music, movies, and games are you into?
I am a personal trainer Monday through Friday so I spend a lot of time in the gym. When I’m not working or on the road, I love spending time with my cock-a-poo, Hulk Hogan, or getting hooked on RPG games like Fable. I have a few shows that I am glued to: Dexter, Vampire Diaries, Boardwalk Empire, Modern Family, Happy Endings, The League, True Blood and I am obsessed with Friends and Big Bang Theory (BAZINGA!). In terms of music I listen to just about anything, but prefer rock/punk/alternative. Some of my favorite bands are The Misfits, Rise Against, Pennywise, Hawksley Workmen, among many others.
Who are some wrestlers you would you like to face in the future?
There are so many! Some that come to mind are Madison Eagles, Sara Del Rey, Serena Deeb, and Angelina Love. But if I could work anybody, it would be Trish Stratus. Trish is one of the reasons I started wrestling in the first place, she was my inspiration. To be able to wrestle a match with her would truly be a dream come true.
Is there anything else you’d like to say to your fans?
Thank you! Thank you for all of your support, if it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t be here! The best is yet to come, 2012 will be the Year of the Bomb!
To learn more about Cherry Bomb follow her on twitter. (@cherrrybomb) and like her Facebook Fan Page. Also visit Classic Championship Wrestling, Tri-City Wrestling, and Neo Spirit Pro Wrestling. She’ll be appearing at AIW Girl’s Night Out 5 this weekend in Cleveland, Ohio! Below, see her take on Courtney Rush in Neo Spirit Pro Wrestling last year:
WSU: Breaking Barriers II
November 19th, 2011
NYWC Sportatorium – Brooklyn, NY
- WSU Tag Team Championship Match The Boston Shore (c) vs. The International Home Wrecking Crew
- Loser Leaves WSU – Jennifer Cruz vs. Niya
- April Hunter vs. Jennifer Cruz
- NYWC Starlet Championship Match – Nikki Syx (c) vs. Violet vs. Gabby Gilbert vs. Jessie Brooks
- The Soul Sisters vs. The Belle Saints
- Becky Bayless vs. Rick Cataldo
- Melina vs. Lexus
- WAR GAMES MATCH – The Mid-West Militia vs. Team WSU
Wrestling Superstars Unleashed’s most recent iPPV left everyone who viewed it, whether in the crowd or at home, in absolute shock. The main event War Games match where Alicia, Brittney Savage and WSU Champion Mercedes Martinez took on the Mid-West Militia of Sassy Stephanie, Allysin Kay, and WSU Spirit Champion Jessicka Havok was mind-blowing from beginning to end. Before the match even started you could feel the air thicken with thoughts of blood and death as the Militia made their way to the ring, wearing skulls and screaming for flesh. Everyone knew something terrible and violent was going to happen. Both groups swore to “kill” each other multiple times prior to the show. Still, in spite of all the promises, warnings, and threats, everyone was left aghast at what actually transpired.
The match was, of course, a war. A long war of attrition filled with numerous momentum changes and memorable moments. From Allysin Kay getting wiped out by a running boot whilst hanging upside-down from the cage, to a Powerbomb/Diving neckbreaker combo from the ropes, to Alicia using her best-in-the-business running hip attack on both Stephie and Kay in the corner, to Mercedes uncharacteristically flipping off the Militia before wiping them all out with a dive, everyone poured their hearts out, and Havok her blood, in one of the best matches I’ve seen this year.
The match had no pinfalls and, as it progressed, it became harder and harder to imagine either team being willing to verbally submit to the other. That was until the machete. Echoing tactics used by Matthew Palmer in ACW earlier this year, the Mid-West Militia broke the barrier of what anyone would expect in a wrestling match and threatened to stab an unconscious Mercedes with a the massive, razor sharp blade. Alicia and Brittney were handcuffed to the ropes. Knowing they were helpless to stop it, save for screaming “I quit,” they grudgingly gave the Militia what the wanted and saved possibly saved Mercedes life.
A sick end to a sick match. Havok posed with the title as EMT’s were called to the venue to help Mercedes. Doomsday for Team WSU. Total victory for the Mid-West Militia.
It wasn’t all gloom at WSU though. The second most talked about match leading up to the show was the WSU debut of Melina. Before the match Serena Deeb, Melina’s originally scheduled opponent, came out and thanked everyone for their support during her injury and promised she would be back in the ring in a wonderful, emotional speech. WSU’s white jeans wearing workhorse, Lexus, did double duty and was substituted in as Melina’s opponent. A great choice as Lexus is constantly improving as a wrestler (while degenerating as a person), and deserved the recognition that this big match brought. Melina earned what may have been an upset over the woman who took Mercedes Martinez to the limit not long ago. Lexus and her Boston Shore partner Amber weren’t pleased with being beat by the newcomer, and attacked Melina post-match. Serena and Rain, who faced the Shore earlier in the night, ran them off. Unfortunately, Serena paid the price for doing the right thing and was assaulted backstage by Lexus, who is apparently aiming to take Portia’s crown as “Worst Person in the World” in 2012.
But you know who is a pretty awesome person? Melina. I met her the week before WSU at Wizard World Austin (more on that in our next ACW report), and she was definitely one of the nicest, coolest people I’ve met in the sport (and I’ve met a lot of great people). She told me beforehand that she was a bit nervous about her impending match and the high level of expectations. WSU is a completely different environment than where she wrestled at previously, and she had taken a bit of time off, but she adapted well, especially towards the end of the match. By all accounts everyone, save the Boston Shore I’m sure, had good things to say about her and I hope she continues to appear for WSU.
Before the top two matches Jennifer Cruz surprised many in her own way, as she sent the rising star Niya out of the promotion. Cruz didn’t have long to gloat, as she was immediately challenged by a revitalized April Hunter. April choked out Cruz and declared her intent to win the WSU title.
While the International Homewrecking Crew reunited, the Belle Saints broke up, due to a betrayal by Tina San Antonio that left poor Marti Belle in a sobbing heap. Nikki Syxx kept her NYWC crown while Rick Cataldo lost an eyelash or three to the returning Becky Bayless.
As always, WSU was eventful. While on the whole it didn’t match the magic that was the Uncensored Rumble iPPV, the main event is an absolutely must see. It’s already available on WSUwrestling.com. Below you can find some exclusive video we took of the Militia before the show, including the near riot they brought on. Enjoy it and more pictures below the cut. Peace!