Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Tournament of Death XI (2012)

I'm reviewing an old CZW Tournament of Death because why the fuck not? Linkin Park provides the theme for this show so it's off to a bad start. The audio is also really poorly mixed and the music for interstitials is loud as fuck. You can barely hear the commentary over the crowd noise. The video says it's almost five hours long, but that's because every match has a shit ton of replays afterward.

Danny Havoc vs. Devon Moore vs. Lucky tHURTeen (Drunken Scaffolding Match)

When people talk about garbage death match wrestling this is the textbook example of it. There is no selling and they just move from spot to spot and it just looks dumb. The first move in the match is Lucky getting backbody dropped out of the ring through a barbed wire board. The worst part is Lucky hitting a top rope Canadian Destroyer and Moore straight up kicks out at two. Or maybe the worst was Havoc getting kicked off the side of the scaffolding through a barbed wire board and getting right up so he can powerslam Moore through another board because Moore hit the apron instead of a board. There are some cool looking spots, but it's not much of a match. Plus I'm pretty sure that is actual legit alcohol they are drinking in the match because they are dumb as fuck.

Drake Younger vs. Rory Mondo (Ladders and Lighttube match)

The crowd hates Rory Mondo because he uses Nick Mondo's name, but is no Nick Mondo. This match starts off with a ladder in every corner covered in random shit. They use the first minute to tease ladder spots and then they stop giving a shit and hit every fucking spot on every fucking thing. Younger starts with an overhead belly to belly suplex onto a ladder and then spends a couple of minutes beating the fuck out of Mondo. Mondo fights back with a ladder to the side of Younger's head and busts him wide open. This is like five minutes in and just keeps escalating. Mondo hits a one winged angel onto a lighttube ladder that only gets two then Younger hits a tiger driver onto a lighttube ladder for two. To finish the match they put two ladders across the ropes in the corner then Younger hits a vertabreaker on them which looks gnarly. They bounce off and Younger hits another vertabreaker for good measure.

MASADA vs. Scot Summers (Panes of Glass match)

The crowd gets grumpy at this match because it starts slowly like an actual wrestling match and it's my favorite of the first round. They trade some holds early then they trade forearms and then they trade some more holds. They tease the glass well before making use of it and every spot through the glass matter and not just something that looks cool. They break the two in the corners and Summers gets his back fucked up. MASADA hits a nice suicide dive then goes to get another pane of glass and Summers launches himself over the ropes and into him and the glass. They go back to brawling in the ring before MASADA hits a huge jacknife powerbomb then pulls out two cinder blocks and sets them next to each other and piledrives Summers on it. Summers hits the blocks hard because his head is busted wide open. He kicks out of the piledriver so MASADA hits a DVD on the blocks for the three count. A good back and forth match that uses actual wrestling and treats the weapon spots like big moments.

Abdullah Kobayashi vs. Matt Tremont (Lighttube bundles and Ultraviolent Bats match)

They have all kinds of bats covered in sharp stuff and a bunch of lighttubes and they don't waste time before putting them to use. Also both men bite a lighttube in half to start the match because they are fucking insane. They build pretty quickly to a superplex through a bundle of lighttubes and then just keep hitting each other with bats, lighttubes, or jabbing broken lighttubes in each others foreheads. DJ Hyde runs out to the ring and smashes a lighttube bundle over Tremont's back then Kobayashi goes off and starts hitting Tremont with everything he can get his hands on before climbing to the top rope and hitting an elbow drop with a lightube for the three count. Probably the second best match of the first round as it felt like a fairly back and forth match before Hyde's interference.

I skipped forward through some stuff, but it looks like somebody might have proposed at tournament of death so I'm sure that's a good relationship.

Joe Gacy vs. Ryan Slater

Gacy is a fucking sloppy wrestler and it is brutal. Especially since Slater takes every real bump in this match. It starts off bad when Gacy tries to chokeslam him onto a microwave and then only part of Slater that hits it is the back of his head. Later Gacy sets up four chairs vaguely next to each other to create a landing spot. They tease DVD's both ways on the apron before Gacy clotheslines Slater over the ropes into the ring. Gacy grabs Slater for a two handed choke slam then kind of throws him over his head, but really lifts him up and Slater falls out of the ring hits the front two chairs and smacks the back of his head on the ring frame. Gacy no sells any of the offense Slater gets in then powerbombs him through a coffee table with lighttubes and thumbtacks on it. This was bad and was basically an extended squash.

Danny Havoc vs. Drake Younger

So this match is full of crazy fucking hardcore spots and doesn't feature too much excessive finisher spamming and kicking out so I'd say it's pretty darn good. Plus there is fire. Drake controls much of the first match after being exploder suplexed through a spider trap. Drake hits a nice piledriver on the apron through some lighttubes. Both men steal each others finishers through some lighttubes for nearfalls, but can't finish it. The back of Drake's head is gushing after the Kudo driver. The craziest spot happens when they set up a thumbtack strip trap across the apron and guardrail then Drake hits a DVD off the top rope to the outside through it and both men somehow survive. Drake gets a set of lighttubes and lights them on fire, blows a fireball, then hits Havoc with it, then goes for a la majistral, but only gets two. Drake swings another set of lighttubes and Havoc ducks it and counters with a dragon suplex through a table of lighttubes and Drake is once again gushing blood from his head. Havoc sets up some lighttubes across two chairs and lights them on fire and goes for a DVD, but Drake counters with a Drake's Landing for the three count. They hit a lot of big moves through crazy shit, but it felt like everything built up to the end instead of them hitting big shit at the beginning and no selling it so I'd say it's pretty damn good for a deathmatch. I forgot to note that in the middle of all the crazy shit. Drake hits a northern lights suplex and does a perfect bridge, which is always nice to be reminded that Drake actually knows how to wrestle.

MASADA vs. Abdullah Kobayashi

I hate pretty much everything about this match. They spend a lot of time shoving wood skewers into each others foreheads and they stick into Kobayashi's head better since he's more scar tissue than skin. They also shove some metal razor things in each others heads which is tough to watch. So just where you know where I draw the line on deathmatches this is where I find it hard to watch. There's also a bead of nails where they pretty much miss it with the first three bumps they go for which has to make it worse as they don't land evenly. Eventually MASADA gets Kobayashi down and sets the bed of nails on him and slams two bricks onto it then climbs to the top and moonsaults onto it for the three count. MASADA also cuts his arm badly doing a forearm through a pain of glass on Kobayashi and we see CZW medical staff at their best as they duct tape a towel around the cut. This technically follows my rules of building up the crazy stuff to the end, but fuck man, I don't like the weapons they are using.

Before the match starts DJ Hyde comes out and says that it's not safe for MASADA to wrestle, but of course it ends up happening anyway.

MASADA vs. Drake Younger (No Rope Barbed Wire Match)

This match is pretty slowly paced and Drake goes after the taped up arm of MASADA for the entire match breaking many lighttubes on it. MASADA goes after Drake's head because he's bald and it bleeds real good. First big moment of the match is Drake sending MASADA onto a barbed wire piece of cage draped from the ring to the guardrail. They go back and forth before MASADA hits a crossbody block onto Drake that sends them both onto the barbedwire cage and they both lay there until people help pull them out. Eventually they pull a lighttube cabin into the ring and MASADA hits a Regalplex through it, but Drake grabs him as he goes for the pin and turns it into a cross armbreaker. MASADA escapes and ducks a kick and turns it into an STF and grabs a chair to pull Drake's head back and get the submission. A pretty low key affair here. There's lots of lighttubes and Drake bleeding, with quite a bit of barbed wire, but the bumps aren't very big and there's not a lot of excitement. Even the crowd there is disappointed. They chant for fire for large portions of the match and when DJ Hyde comes out to present the trophy he says they gave the fans what they wanted and you can hear a fan yell “Not really.” It's not a horrible match, and probably is one of the smarter worked matches of the tournament, but as the crowning moment of the tournament it's just really subdued and lacks big oh my god moments that I was looking forward to.


This was about what I expected from a CZW Tournament of Death so it was pretty fun to watch except for MASADA vs. Kobayashi. Something I've got to be in the right kind of mood to watch and obviously it's not great wrestling. There's also a bonus match on the show I didn't feel like watching. The sound mixing is terrible and the endless replays after every match are kind of a bummer when you're just trying to watch through the show. I know because I've started and stopped watching it so many times before this review for that very reason. I can't really say I'd recommend this, but it's not something I regret buying either. Also I'm pretty sure I got the download of this on sale one time so that made it seem like a better purchase as well. Here's the link to the download for sale on highspots if this review has made you interested http://www.highspots.com/p/VD_czw_todIX.html

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