async src="//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js"> The Wrestling Chronicle: Evolve 51 iPPV Review

Monday, January 4, 2016

Evolve 51 iPPV Review



I had a little bit of cash to spend so I figured I'd purchase Evolve 51 + 52 being that they were heavily talked about and give you, the fellow wrestling fan and reader, my thoughts!

Review by: Erik Vasquez

Evolve 51

November 6, 2015 - The Orpheum in Ybor City, Florida

The show kicks off with the announcement that there will be a tournament held to crown the inaugural Evolve Tag Team Champions. The first team to compete in the tournament will be Roppongi Vice.

Ethan Page vs. Peter Kaasa

"If Billy Jack Haynes had a kid with Jack Evans it would be Peter Kaasa." Rob Naylor

Very good opening match. Peter Kaasa is someone to definitely keep an eye on. Excellent physique and very agile, similar to WWE's Neville. He was also trained by one of my favorites "Raging Bull" Manny Fernandez. Different Ethan Page here. He's looking to turn a new leaf after being told he sucks by WWE Superstar Sami Zayn. Surprised by the winner of the match but loved the bout nonetheless.

Matthew Riddle vs. Drew Gulak

What I loved most about this match is when Riddle would lock on a submission Gulak knew where he was in the ring and for the most part got to the ropes fairly quickly. This was a nice mix of grappling, ground and pound, and striking. Closing sequence saw Riddle counter Gulak who was coming off the top into an armbar. Really good stuff.

After the match Gulak thanks Riddle for the match. He tells Riddle that he has all the talent to make it in the world of professional wrestling. Riddle dismisses Gulak's compliment and says he is just another stepping stone to Riddle getting to the Evolve Championship. Fellow Catchpoint member Tracy Williams lays Riddle out. Before Gulak exits he tells Riddle that today's least in professional wrestling is anything can happen.

Fred Yehi vs. Lio Rush

Fun match between two relatively unknown newcomers to the Indy Wrestling scene. Rush has been getting his name out there and capped off a great 2015 by winning the CZW Wired Championship. I'm just familiarizing myself with Yehi but the little I have seen I really enjoyed. Fast paced match filled with quick counters and heavy strikes.

Martin Stone vs. "Hot Sauce" Tracy Williams

Stone may look familiar to some as he has made sporadic appearances on NXT. Hailing from East London he has been making a name for himself in the Florida area. His fighting style is a hybrid of brawling with some technical expertise as well. 

"Hot Sauce" Tracy Williams comes to us by way of Brooklyn, New York. A protégé of fellow Catchpoint member Drew Gulak, he displays a vast knowledge of catch and submission style wrestling.

So far this is my favorite match on the show. Stone hangs in there matching Williams' technical offense with heavy blows and even some neat technical wrestling of his own. The ending stretch to this match was excellent stuff.

TJ Perkins vs. Anthony Nese

Another solid contest on the card. Perkins did a really good job working the arm to set up the closing sequence. Hard to believe someone so young (31 years old) has 16+ years of experience in the wrestling business.

Caleb Konley vs. Drew Galloway

The match starts out super hot with Konley interrupting Galloway's pre-match introduction. Both men brawl about the venue with most of the action taking place at the bar area. After Drew takes a swig of some Yuengling (in which he wastes by spitting in Konley's face) he begins to set up a row of chairs to inflict more damage. Before Drew can destroy Konley with his new furniture arrangement Andrea steps in and would not allow it to happen. Just before Galloway can neutralize Andrea he side steps Konley who lays in a shot on Andrea, by accident of course. The action finally finds it's way into the ring and the bell sounds after almost 10 minutes of brawling. Konley proved to be a pain of an opponent for Galloway as even an avalanche Air Raid Crash wasn't enough to put Konley away. Nice closing sequence. Good match to show off just how underrated Caleb Konley is.

Before the main event between Johnny Gargano and Timothy Thatcher for the Evolve Championship, Ethan Page comes out to once again try and convince Gargano that he is a changed man. Once again Gargano tells Page to get out of his ring.

Timothy Thatcher (c) vs. Johnny Gargano for the Evolve Championship 

Wow, what an incredible contest. This match is how you define professional wrestling as an art form.

Timothy Thatcher is the best technical wrestler on this planet hands down. Every move he makes is done with purpose and he makes sure to have control of at least one limb whether on offense or defense. Thatcher is minimalistic yet the simplicity is a mind game in my opinion to goat his opponent into taking him lightly. Once the bell rings you had better prepared yourself for the pain you're about to endure.

When WWE Superstar Sami Zayn appeared at an earlier Evolve show he stated that independent wrestling, something Zayn was once the gatekeeper of, is in great hands. He believes that Indy Wrestling is in a safe place in the hands of Johnny Gargano and who could argue that? His two reigns as Open the Freedom Gate Champion combine for 1005 days! There's no doubt in my mind that Gargano is primed and ready to show off his talents on a bigger stage. 

This match was a showcase of catch wrestling, submission style, with a touch of ground and pound. A beauty for any fan of pure wrestling. Both men showed expertise with Thatcher targeting Gargano's arm (which proved to be his downfall) and Gargano targeting Thatcher's leg which would not allow him to bridge when he had the Fujiwara Armbar applied later in the match. This contest is well worth the price of viewing alone. An excellent way to cap off a great show.

There you have it folks, the Evolve 51 iPPV reviewed for your reading pleasure. Hope this review piques your interests in learning more about the thriving independent wrestling scene. Let me know what you thought of the review and/or the show by leaving a comment below or reaching out to us via social media!:

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