Ring Rats Anonymous: UCW TV TAPING (12th Anniversary Show) @ UCW Arena 03.22

Posted March 27, 2014 in
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Illustration: Dylan Chadwick

Twelve years ago, Stevie Slick started this company in his basement. It now sports an ultra loyal fanbase and ranks as THE pre-eminent promotion for quality pro-wrestling in Utah. Normally, I’m loaded with snark on these things, but I really can’t think of much to be sarcastic about. I’m from the Louisville, Ky. metro. Jim Cornette’s home base and the seat of the Ohio Valley “territory,” a feeder system to the big promotions and region with an established wrasslin’ culture. Moving to Utah was a culture shock on all fronts. I’m not talking about Mormonism, snowboarding and the super-dry climate … I didn’t know where to find the wrestling! Don’t worry though. All that changed once I found UCW-Zero. Long live it! Long live independent wrestling! 

Rocky Ocean v. Dark Angel
We started off with two newer wrestlers in the UCW camp, but ones we’ve already come to dig. Dark Angel’s “jazz hands” are becoming a quick fan-favorite chant, and Rocky Ocean plays it best as a mean, ol’ heel. Amid cacophonous chants of “Rocky Sucks!” Ocean threw Angel into a painful-looking (is that a … ?) camel clutch to win by submission. I’m very excited to see what they do with both of these characters.
 
Durango Kid v. Brandon Austin
This one began with Dante Acosta coming to the ring in street clothes, talking about “personal demons” or some other such nonsense. Then he publicly made amends with Durango Kid (his former tag partner whom he’d acrimoniously split with weeks prior). Everyone seems to be solidifying a good gimmick here, and Brandon Austin just works as a heel. I can see a totally (non-lame) Goldberg-esque persona where he doesn’t talk and just whoops ass. Anyway, after a great match (Austin’s moveset is pretty impressive), Durango Kid managed to keep the title, and he made sure to gloat about it. Unfortunately for him, though, the win forged an alliance between Acosta and Austin, and though he may hold the title, they’re both gunning for him now.
 
Tag  Team
“The Reign of Insane” (Kade + Bronson) v. 801 District (Junior X + Los Mochis Paco)
With a card this stacked, I’m split between which one was my “favorite,” but this could be it. Kade (he’s dropped the “Kid”) and Bronson have a great tag team as “The Reign of Insane” and frankly, Kade is infinitely more interesting as a heel (You know it’s true). Furthermore, Bronson’s gimmick has become so solid that I’d rank it as one of the best in the company, strictly based on his ability to lend gravitas and comedy to the appropriate scenarios. Now, it goes without saying that the 801 District is plenty over with the fans, but it was the drama and scorn initiated by Kade (love those facial expressions) that kept me hooked for the entire thing. I shan’t detail every single spot (and there were some doozies!) but I here’s a link for proof. 801 District won it, but this feud (assuming it continues) is burning white hot.
 
Tommy Purr + Lacey Ryan
v. Sierra Rose + Jayson Bravo
Mystery partner time! The announcement of Tommy Purr got the crowd hot, and why wouldn’t it? The dude’s a firebrand and always a treat to watch. What I wasn’t prepared for was just how good his dynamic was with Lacey Ryan. To me, Lacey tends to shine as a singles wrestler, but having been screwed out of more than a few wins recently, I’m glad she’s mixing up the formula. Same great technicality on her end, but the show stealer was Purr (as a face), bumming out Jayson Bravo and Sierra Rose with a ribald brand of comedy and sexual innuendo (the “neuter knee” to the crotch is one o’ my all time favs). There was some great crowd heat, the highlight being the smacker (my bad, this is wrestling commentary, I should specify that in this case, a “smacker” is a kiss) that Purr laid right on Bravo’s bubblin’ lips. It was still a dirty win for Bravo and Rose, but there was excellent match chemistry and a great crowd response. I wish Tommy Purr could be at every taping.