Where to start. I've been a fan of ICW since probably about April 2016 and I was immediately hooked. It was like watching the WWF Attitude Era mixed with some ECW Originals. I had to go see a show. I heard about a huge event happening in Glasgow, Scotland and I decided I'm going.
The Venue is the SSE Hydro, in Glasgow (Scotland, UK), and it is a beautiful structure. The acoustics in the seating areas were astonishing because I could hear the crowd in front and behind, the standing crowd, the action in the ring and the music and yet hold a conversation with my friend next to me without having to raise my voice.
The card was:
For 100% Control of ICW - Team Dallas (Chris Renfrew & Grado & Sha Samuels & DCT) Vs Team Black Label (Jack Jester & Kid Fite & Drew Galloway & Bram)
Kurt Angle Vs Joe Coffey
ICW Tag Team Championship Match: Polo Promotions Vs Team 3D
ICW Women's Championship Match - Carmel (c) Vs Kay Lee Ray Vs Viper
ICW Zero G Championship Stairway To Heaven Match - Lionheart Vs Zack Gibson Vs Andy Wild Vs Liam Thomson Vs Iestyn Reeves Vs Aaron Echo Vs Kenny Williams
Ricochet Vs Lewis Girvan
Casket Match - BT Gunn Vs Stevie Boy
Commissioner Mick Foley will be appear via satellite
WWE Superstar Finn Balor will return to ICW in person as Mick Foley's special guest enforcer
We also had Joe Hendry take on Davey Blaze.
Fear & Loathing IX was a live event by Insane Championship Wrestling which took place at The SSE Hydro on 20 November 2016 in Glasgow, Scotland, UK. It is the company's biggest show of the year and this event marks the company's debut show at The SSE Hydro. It is the third year in a row that the company has broken its all-time attendance record at Fear and Loathing.
We start the show with Wrestling Legend/WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley introducing Finn Balor (who is now in WWE but has had stints in ICW and is a former ICW Champion) who gives a promo saying he said he'd be back and is excited for the event tonight. ICDub chants fill the arena.
Joe Hendry defeated Davey Blaze
This was a fairly quick match and a nice build up, lots of back and forth from Hendry getting at Wee Man, in the end Hendry picked up the clean win and then attacked Wee Man for screwing him over in the tag team match to determine the team that faces Team 3D at the Hydro (Which Polo Promotions won).
Kay Lee Ray defeated Viper and Carmel for the ICW Women's Championship in a Triple Threat match.
This match had a lot of (what seems like) legitimate animosity between Kay Lee Ray and Viper. Kay Lee Ray is a young woman who has a huge career in front of her. Mark my words she'll go far. She already wrestles in Japan and Britain, I'd love for her to be on more shows if she wishes to. Kay Lee Ray can make a German Suplex look like Brock Lesnar just F-5'd the shit out of you. She's THAT good. Viper looked great in this match regardless of just coming back from an injury, as the same with Carmel, she too was injured. Sadly after the match, and after Carmel putting over Kay Lee Ray, Carmel retired from pro wrestling after 12 years in the business.
Stevie Boy defeated BT Gunn in a casket (coffin) match.
The crowd were firmly sided with Gunn for this bout. Lots of back and forth between both men, this rivalry needed to be buried (excuse the pun). Gunn and Stevie took turns to throw the other in the casket and try to close it. In the end it took New ICW Women's Champion, Kay Lee Ray, to interfere by hitting Gunn with a chair and this led to helping fellow Filthy Generation member Stevie to pick up the victory. Kay Lee Ray took a few bumps in this match as a result.
Polo Promotions defeated Team 3D to retain the ICW Undisputed Tag Team Championship.
The finish was pretty sloppy in this match and no one knows why but the teams involved. A lot of disappointed fans as a result of this match. Personally speaking it was at the end of the match that the show sort of died down a little. Overall the show was fucking brilliant but there was always this holding in the back of our minds. This was no tables match but Team 3D came out with tables to customised music by, I believe, Psychodalek, the group that created something like 90% ICW's themes – I'm not certain on the exact number but I'm 100% sure they didn't do Madonna's Like A Prayer for Grado. The match started as a No DQ match. Team 3D looked good in the ring as they usually do, Brother Ray took out Jackie Polo with a Stick Horse toy. A nostalgic “wazzup” and a “Get The Tables” moment which was briefly interrupted by Polo Promotions. This was the beginning of the end of the match where the finish made no sense. Brother Ray hit Jackie polo with a chair and then Team 3D completed a reverse dual neck breaker on Mark Coffey. Devon decided to pin Coffey which Coffey kicked out of. Team 3D went in for a 3D, their tag team double finisher, but it appeared to be just Devon doing a flapjack onto Mark Coffey where the referee only counted to “1” before Devon released the pin. Brother Ray picks up Jackie Polo, backs up into the corner after saying something to Jackie to which he then gets hit by a chair. Jackie Polo then hits Devon with the chair, scoop slammed him onto the chair, and pinned him for a 3 count to retain the titles. Just watching it again confuses me a little as the camera angle didn't get what most of us saw that night. It looked a lot sloppier than it is on camera. Post-match the announcer was overshadowed with boo's from us hardcore wrestling fans.
Kenny Williams defeated Lionheart, Zack Gibson, Andy Wild, Liam Thomson, Iestyn Reeves and Aaron Echo in a Stairway to Heaven match.
This was a really exciting match. Before the match started, Mick Foley appeared on screen and announced one more man to the match, that man would be Kenny Williams – Lionheart's current rival. The match itself went quickly until all the wrestlers except Williams and Lionheart were left to battle it out. Kenny Williams and Lionheart battle outside the ring and up the entrance ramp. Zack Gibson debuted tonight at Fear and Loathing IX – he is a local wrestler to Liverpool, England. He is one of the most hated (Kayfabe) men in England – because he’s from Liverpool – it’s quite funny. Andy Wilde is a former 2 time Zero G Champion in ICW – I don’t know much about him to comment unfortunately. There was a nice high Suplex spot off the turnbuckle to the opponents on the outside from Lionheart to Kenny Williams in the beginning of this match. Iestyn Reeves is a quick agile big man and he could be quite the challenger to any champion in pro wrestling. The exact order of eliminations were: Zack Gibson was the first to be eliminated by Liam Thompson. Any Wilde eliminates Liam Thompson. Aaron Echo eliminated by Iestyn Reeves. Kenny Williams eliminates Iestyn Reeves. Lionheart eliminates Aaron Echo. It then turns into a ladder match. As Billy “Fucking” Kirkwood says “The Bad Mother Fucker vs The Bollocks” in a ladder match. In the beginning of the ladder match, Kenny Williams tries a springboard move and Lionheart makes him eat the ladder – this spot was a brilliant masterpiece because Williams was genuinely close to the ladder – it looked real. There was another moment when Lionheart hit his finisher (think Rock Bottom) onto the ladder. When both men were reaching for the title from their ladders, Lionheart hit his finisher from a good 11 feet in the air, the crowd loved it. Shortly after both men get up, Kenny Williams and Lionheart are climbing the ladder to the LEFT of the ring and not in the CENTRE where they should be to climb up and grab the title, Williams then hits the cutter on Lionheart, begins to climb the ladder and grabs the title to become the new and second time ICW Zero G Champion.
“The Best Young Wrestler” Lewis Girvan defeated Ricochet.
This was a huge shocker as Girvan tapped out Ricochet. If you’ve ever seen Lucha Underground, Evolve, NJPW or any major Indy event you’ve probably heard of Ricochet (Prince Puma in Lucha Underground) and he is a young wrestler not even in his prime yet. Ricochet is “Born to Fly” he does what Vader calls “Flippy shit” but obviously that is a sour old man’s views. Faced paced action from the get go. Early in the match, Ricochet flipped into the crowd and the crowd LOVED it. A mid match submission to Ricochet followed by a deadlift powerbomb from Ricochet to kick out. The night before, at the ICW Tapings, Ricochet won his debut ICW match. Ricochet is so good when he wrestling kicks you, it looks like he is genuinely trying to kick your teeth down your throat. Near the end of the match, Ricochet goes to the top turnbuckle and misses his 630 flip finisher, Girvan hits the scorpion DDT, Ricochet kicks out, but Girvan makes him tap to a modified crossface.
Wolfgang (c) defeated Trent Seven in an ICW World Heavyweight Championship cage match.
Wolfgang came out with bikers and looked like a badass biker gang. Before the match officially began, both men fought outside the cage, tables were introduced early on. Lots of suplexes early in the cage match. Halfway through the match, Wolfgang introduces the brass knuckles, but misses and Trent goes on the attack on Wolfgang. Trent hit Wolfgang with the brass knuckles then hit with him with the piledriver but Wolfgang kicks out. Shortly after, the cage is used as a weapon, Wolfgang’s skull being thrown into the cage walls. Trent tries to escape the cage by climbing up and out of it, but Wolfgang suplexes him back into the ring and gets a 1 count with a pinfall. Wolfgang climbs the cage and Trent follows, they continue to punch each other until Wolfgang climbs out, Trent hits Wolfgang with the brass knuckles and Wolfgang falls through the tables, but his feet touch the floor. Wolfgang beats Trent Seven by Trent’s mishap.
Team Dallas defeats Black Label for 100% control of ICW.
Most ICW fans believe this should have been the main event. Personally I’m a supporter of heels so I was routing for Black Label. That’s right, I’m a Black Label guy. I feel like Team Dallas could have done better with the entrances. It would be amazing to hear Grado’s music with 6 thousand people singing “Like A Prayer”. Team Dallas storm the ring but Black Label “strategically” retreat. Sha Samuels is eliminated by Kid Fite. Kid Fite is eliminated by DCT. DCT eliminated by Bram. Bram eliminated by Grado. Grado eliminated by Jack Jester. Jack Jester eliminated by Chris Renfrew. It is now down to Chris Renfrew vs Drew Galloway. Mark Dallas gets Claymore Kicked by Galloway and proceeds to hammer on Dallas. Jester grabs Galloway but Galloway shoves him out of the way. Renfrew goes to hit his finisher but Galloway tombstones him instead. He gets a 2 count. Galloway puts him in a submission and Renfrew almost passes out. Dallas hits Galloway with a crutch but Galloway knocks him out. Galloway goes for the Future Shock DDT but Finn Balor comes to the ring to enforce the situation. Jester and Galloway partner up to corner Balor. JESTER FACE TURN!!!??? Jester passes the metal pipe thing to Balor, Balor hits Galloway, and Team Dallas are able to pick up the win!
Joe Coffey defeated Kurt Angle.
All in all this was meant to be a fight for the ages but it was a slow to begin with grappling match. There was a few suplexes here and there. The toll on Kurt Angle is obvious. It’s not his fault obviously, the bloke has been wrestling for over 20 years, and he is a future hall of famer. The match had a lot of high angle and high impact spots but it was a slow based grapple style wrestling match. Lots of German Suplexes were traded. Kurt Angle hit the Angle Slam but Coffey kicks out. Angle bleeds from his mouth. He’s human after all and not a machine. Angle is smart here. He gets Coffey in an Angle (ankle) Lock but Coffey gets out and Discuss Clothesline’s him. We are told this is the closing moments so there wasn’t much to this match, it felt rushed. Coffey is placed in another Ankle Lock but reverses into a Boston Crab, Angle taps out. The crowd are in shock and let it be heard. You have to really let this sink in. Joe Coffey, a UK Independent wrestler from Scotland, at the biggest European show in the past 30 plus years, made an American veteran like Kurt Angle (who is an Olympic gold medallist) tap out! Post-match: The Crowd chant “thank you Kurt!” and Kurt Angle tells Coffey he didn’t know who he was and never seen him wrestle but he is for real and was the better man. He says this won’t be the end of Coffey vs Angle.
We have to think now, what is next for Coffey? A title shot is down the road for him.
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