By Chris Vetter, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@chrisvetter73)
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Warrior Wrestling 21 on FITE TV
April 23, 2022 in South Bend, Indiana at Bendix Arena
Report by Dot Net reader Chris Vetter
Rich Bocchini and Val Capone were on commentary. This venue is a lecture hall or auditorium, with auditorium seating going around most of the ring. I have seen Warrior Wrestling use this venue before and it seems like a cool place to watch independent wrestling. Attendance is perhaps 800.
1. Sam Adonis defeated Aramis to retain the Warrior Wrestling Lucha Title at 12:59. Adonis, known as Rudo in NWA, is the younger brother of Corey Graves, and he’s much bigger than Aramis. Quick lucha reversals to open, and Aramis nailed a dive through the ropes at 4:00. Aramis hit some Yes Kicks to the chest and a mid-ring Spanish Fly. Adonis hit a flip dive to the floor at 7:00.
Aramis hit a second-rope huracanrana and several superkicks, then a frogsplash for a nearfall. Adonis hit the Eat Defeat, then a sitdown powerbomb for a nearfall, and they were both down at 10:00. Aramis hit a top-rope huracanrana, then another from the ring apron to the floor. He hit another one off the top-rope to the middle of the ring for a nearfall. The crowd was hot for this opener. Adonis hit a German Suplex, two clotheslines, then a standing powerbomb, leaning over him for leverage, and scored the pin. Very good opener. These guys have great chemistry.
2. Karl Fredericks defeated Clark Connors at 14:11. These two are New Japan dojo graduates. Bocchini explained there will be a series of matches among LA Dojo graduates on upcoming shows. Mat reversals to open; these guys obviously know each other very well. They started trading hard chops at 4:00. Connors sat down, taunting Fredericks to hit some kicks to the back. Karl hit some kicks then a spinebuster for a nearfall. Connors hit a Pounce at 6:00.
Karl hit an enzuigiri and they were both down. Karl hit a basement dropkick into the corner. Connnors applied a Full Nelson, and he had Karl down on the mat, but Karl powered out. Clark nailed a spear for a nearfall, and the crowd chanted “this is awesome!” Karl hit a second-rope superplex, and they were both down at 10:30. Karl hit a top-rope double stomp as Clark was draped over the top rope, getting a nearfall. Clark nailed a powerslam for a believable nearfall, and they were both down at 13:00. They traded blows, and Connors hit a German Suplex and a spear. Clark went for a move, but Karl got a rollup for the pin. Fantastic showcase for these two; they’ve fought so many times now but this was superb.
The commentary team announced that the winner of Will Ospreay vs. Blake Christian will face Davey Richards at the next show in St. Louis.
*Frank the Clown had a press conference. They set up the podium in the ring. He talked and bored the hot crowd. What a colossal waste of time. This dragged and dragged. He brought out Storm Grayson and Shazza McKenzie.
3. Storm Grayson (w/Frank the Clown) defeated Alex Zayne at 12:16. Grayson has competed in AAW and was in a match at the Warrior show last month. Grayson stalled. When Zayne got in some moves, Grayson rolled to the floor to stall some more, so Zayne hit a plancha at 4:00. In the ring, Zayne hit a corkscrew senton for a nearfall. Frank interfered so Alex chased him. Storm hit a suplex onto the ring apron. Grayson was in charge in the ring, hitting a dropkick at 8:00 for a nearfall.
Zayne hit a flip kick to the back of the neck, then his flipping huracanrana out of the corner for a nearfall at 10:30. Grayson hit a Blue Thunder Bomb, then a powerbomb, for a nearfall. Zayne hit a German suplex and a kick to the face for a nearfall. Zayne missed a top-rope (Pac) Red Arrow splash; Grayson got a rollup and Frank held down Zayne’s feet, allowing Grayson to score the pin. Very “WWE style” of a match.
*Calvin Tankman (who had a pre-show match) attacked Zayne and joined Frank the Clown’s faction.
4. Swerve Strickland defeated Adam Brooks at 14:36. Brooks is Australian. He hit a flip dive to the floor. The crowd chanted “Who’s House? Swerve’s house!’ Swerve worked over the left arm. This is a face-face matchup – good action early but no major moves. Brooks nailed a Lungblower at 9:00. Swerve nailed a running knee to the jaw. Swerve hit a German Suplex but Brooks landed on his feet.
Swerve hit another German Suplex, this time dumping him on his head. Brooks went for a suplex and turned it into a neckbreaker over his knee for a nearfall. Swerve applied a Divorce Court armbreaker at 12:00. Brooks hit a second-rope flying double knees to the head for a nearfall. He went for a Swanton but Swerve got his knees up. Swerve hit his running kick to the head for a believable nearfall. Swerve hit his top-rope double stomp to the upper chest for the pin. Another really good match.
5. Dante Martin and Dante Leon defeated Brian Cage and KC Navarro at 16:23. Leon is replacing the injured Darius Martin; Leon wrestled a night earlier at the Game Changer Wrestling show. At the Warrior show in February, Navarro accidentally hit Cage, and the announcers speculated if they are on the same page. Navarro and Martin opened and traded quick offense. The Dantes hit basement dropkicks on Navarro’s head. Cage entered and hit a German Suplex on Leon. Cage and KC worked over Leon. Cage hit his series of legdrops at 7:00.
In a fun spot, Cage and Martin each had an opponent on their shoulders, and they jawed at each other, then took turns tossing their opponent. Martin hit a plancha. Navarro hit a flip dive. Martin hit a flip dive. Yes, those three moves were back-to-back-to back. In the ring, Leon hit his flipping stunner on Cage for a nearfall at 10:00. Cage hit his modified F5 on Leon for a nearfall. KC hit a tornado DDT for a believable nearfall. Martin got in and hit a Samoan Drop into a pin attempt for a nearfall.
Cage hit a standing powerbomb on Martin, but Leon broke up the pin at 12:30. Cage hit a flipping faceplant on Martin. Leon avoided a move and hit a Canadian Destroyer on Cage. Cage caught both Dantes and gave them Samoan Drops. He hit a sit-out powerbomb on Leon for a believable nearfall. Cage accidentally clotheslined Navarro! The Dantes shoved Cage to the floor, and Leon hit a top-rope corkscrew press on Navarro for the pin.
*Cage helped Navarro to his feet, but KC shoved him. Cage paused, then shoved him back, and KC fell to the mat. Cage left the ring, with Navarro lying in the corner, no further punches were thrown.
*Thunder Rosa headed to the ring to abdicate the Warrior Wrestling women’s title. It was announced last month she would relinquish the title. I don’t understand why she couldn’t just lose it on her way out. Rosa said this was going to be among her last indy appearances for a while. She left the title in the ring, and she joined the commentary team for the next match.
6. Athena (f/k/a Ember Moon) defeated Skye Blue and Shazza McKenzie (w/Frank the Clown) to win the vacant Warrior Women’s Title at 17:04. Skye is quite popular in the Chicago area. Skye hit a huracanrana on Shazza, and they all traded quick reversals. Frank climbed in the ring and hugged Shazza. Athena and Skye traded some good moves; Frank and Shazza yanked Skye to the floor, so Athena dove on all of them at 5:00. Shazza took control of Athena in the ring and tied her up on the mat.
Shazza then began working over Skye and hit a snap suplex for a nearfall at 8:00. Frank kicked Skye right in front of the ref, so I guess this is WWE-style no-DQ in a triple threat. Athena and Shazza traded blows on the ring apron at 10:30. Athena did a handspring-back-elbow in the corner. Athena applied a Dragon Sleeper on Shazza at 12:00. They did a tower spot out of the corner, with Skye on top, crashing hard to the mat, and everyone was down. Skye hit a spinning faceplant on Athena for a nearfall at 16:00. Athena hit her top-rope diving stunner on McKenzie for the pin. Athena then dragged Frank into the ring and gave him a DDT.
7. Will Ospreay pinned Blake Christian to retain the Warrior Title at 25:03. Ospreay wore his oversized robe and the Warrior title to the ring. Ospreay is thicker and slightly taller. Intense lockup to start. Ospreay hit a shoulder tackle but Blake popped right up. Blake hit a dropkick at 4:00. The crowd is hot! Ospreay chopped Blake in the corner, sending Christian tumbling to the floor. Ospreay hit a hard knee drop to the upper back as Blake was lying on the ring apron at 6:30.
Ospreay was now in control in the ring. Blake hit an enzuigiri to the shoulder and a clothesline at 9:30. Ospreay nailed the handspring-back-enzuigiri, and they were both down, and the crowd loudly chanted, “This is awesome!” Ospreay nailed a top-rope flying forearm to the base of the neck for a nearfall at 11:30. Blake hit a tilt-a-whirl faceplant and a hard kick that sent Ospreay rolling to the floor. Blake nailed a flip dive to the floor.
Blake hit a springboard DDT into the ring for a nearfall at 13:30. They avoided each other’s big moves. Ospreay hit a mid-ring Spanish Fly, and they were both down again. They got up and traded stiff forearm shots and chops. Ospreay hit a sudden German suplex at 18:30. Christian nailed a flipping double stomp to the chest for a believable nearfall. Ospreay nailed his sit-out powerbomb, then the Oz-cutter/springboard stunner for a believable nearfall at 20:00. The crowd went nuts for the kickout.
Blake avoided the Hidden Blade/running forearm. Ospreay hit a Poison Rana. Blake nailed the Hidden Blade, and they were both down! Blake went for his double-arm spinning DDT but Ospreay avoided it. They fought on the ropes in the corner, and Ospreay hit a top-rope powerbomb for a believable nearfall. Blake hit a huracanrana. Ospreay nailed the Hidden Blade for a believable nearfall. Ospreay then nailed the Stormbreaker, spinning Blake off his shoulders into a faceplant, for the clean pin. WOW WOW WOW. Bocchini said it was the greatest match he’s seen in two years, and I agree. The crowd chanted “both these guys!” then “All-heart!”
Ospreay grabbed the mic and said, “Blake Christian, you have my respect.” Ospreay said he will be watching him. He then talked about wanting his next opponent, Davey Richards, in the ring. KC Navarro, who has a number one contender medallion, ran in the ring, seemingly to attack Ospreay. However, Brian Cage cut him off and told Navarro his next match would be against him.
Final Thoughts: The show clocked in at nearly three-and-a-half hours. That main event was incredible, and everything I could have hoped for. I will echo Bocchini’s comment… I can’t think of a match I’ve seen in 2022 that was better. Those last five minutes had some incredible reversals, and perfect timing between both stars. It really doesn’t get much better than that.
Close second place but I’ll give Fredericks-Connors a slight edge over Swerve-Brooks, but totally understand if others put Strickland’s match second-best. On the flip side, I hated everything about Frank the Clown. I hated his interview, and I hated his involvement in two matches.
I don’t claim to understand the ins and outs of AEW contracts. Obviously, AEW contracted wrestlers Brian Cage, Swerve Scott and Dante Martin were on this show. Lance Archer has appeared on recent shows, too, among others. So, I don’t understand why Thunder Rosa has to relinquish the title, or, why she couldn’t have lost on her way out. It wouldn’t hurt her at all to take a loss.
I love Warrior Wrestling. The ring is well lit, they have great commentary and sound, and they have a LOT of free matches on Youtube.com you can check out.