Ohio Championship Wrestling: Thanksgiving Special (2016)

Ohio Championship Wrestling

Thanksgiving Special

OCW Arena

Akron, Ohio

November 26, 2016



1.) Ohio v. Michigan: “Bulletproof” Brandon Edwards (representing “The Dirty”) defeated Sherman Tank.

Huge pop for Tank as he made his way to the ring. It was smart to start the show with him because it set the tone for the audience for the remainder of the evening.

As an OSU alum, Tank taunted Edwards about the outcome of the OSU-Michigan game earlier in the day.

Tank was tripped by Edwards’ partner Austin Manix. Manix held Tank’s leg while Edwards secured the pin. It was a simple but effective match.

The ring announcer then drew the audience’s attention to the Alicie’s Action Figure Frenzy merch table. They were running some great deals on wrestling figures. (Personally, I bought a Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart figure at a very reasonable price. Check them out on Facebook here.)

2.) Chase Aaryons defeated Jaxon Argos.

I haven’t seen Aaryons in a couple years. He has noticeably improved in the ring. He is also much better at conveying personality. He now works a “nerd” gimmick and wears a button-up shirt and a bow tie.

Argos was interesting. A graduate of Lance Storm’s Storm Wrestling Academy, Argos came out waving a Canadian flag. He cut a short heel promo.

Argos: “I’m imported talent!”

Aaryons tagged Argos with a dropkick before registering the pinfall.

The students of OCW’s training school SpineBuster University were brought out and introduced by Matt Fantone of The Stansbury Show on Rock 106.9. The students were particularly nervous but it was a nice little plug for the school.

3.) Cory Saviors defeated Otis Cogar (representing the Cogar Brothers).

Saviors yelled “come on” a lot, which is one of my pet peeves. Otherwise, the match was serviceable.

Saviors rolled up Cogar for the pin. He was immediately jumped by Atticus Cogar.

For only being in the business around six months, the Cogars are a nice little act.

Intermission (48-minute mark)

4.) OCW Tag Team Championship Tournament Match: The Flying Starrs (“Flyin'” Ryan Burke & Robby Starr) defeated The Party Crashers (“No Shame” Jimmy Shane & “Agent Orange” Juice Jennings) to continue in the tournament.

Starr gave Jennings a Frankensteiner in Shane and followed with a moonsault on Shane to score the pin. Really cool finishing sequence.

Matt Fatone was back in the ring to conduct an interview with retired local wrestler, Green Hornet. (When I first began attending indy wrestling shows years ago, I most often attended Hornet shows because they were held close to where I lived.)

Hornet: “Keep your head down cuz when swings coming your are gonna get hurt.” Sage advice.

Hornet was interrupted by Ripper Blackheart who was dispatched in short order.

Fantone ended the segment by announcing Hornet as “the former United States Champion of the World,” which was awesome.

5.) Main Event: OCW Heavyweight Championship-“Darkstar” Matt Taylor (c) defeated “One Man Militia” Austin Manix (w/ Brandon Edwards and representing “The Dirty”) to retain the title. 

I like that spots like suicide dives were saved until late in the card so they felt different and special.

Manix brought a chair in the ring. As the ref took it from him, Taylor superkicked him for the pin.

Jennings and Shane hit the ring, followed immediately by Burke and Starr. A huge melee erupts. Tank comes out to even the odds. The babyfaces are the only ones left standing.

Taylor and Tank then suggest that, in true Thanksgiving tradition, the eight men square off in an unscheduled elimination tag team match. The heels accept the challenge.

6.)Main Event #2:  Matt Taylor/Sherman Tank/Robby Starr/Ryan Burke defeated Austin Manix/Brandon Edwards/Jimmy Shane/Juice Jennings in an 8-man elimination tag team match. 

Order of elimination:

  1. Burke submitted to Jennings.
  2. Jennings pinned by Starr.
  3. Shane pinned by Starr.
  4. Starr pinned by Manix.
  5. Edwards pinned by Tank.
  6. Manix pinned by Taylor.

Survivors: Matt Taylor & Sherman Tank.

The Verdict

This show took me back. Heels are heels. Babyfaces are babyfaces. 95% of the matches take place in the ring. There are no crazy highspots or unnecessary violence.

The company is smart and gears the show to families and children. They even run discount deals such as a $35 for a family of four ticket package. An audience full of children is never a bad thing. The energy level alone is great. There was never a point throughout the evening where the crowd was dead.

I also like that OCW a.) has fostered some outside sponsors to defray the cost of shows and b.) they draw attention to the sponsors in an attempt to ensure they get value out of their investment. This is just sound business that few–if any–local promotions manage to do.

Finally, the show was advertised to start at 7 PM and started at…drum roll…precisely 7 PM. This is another thing that so many promotions can’t seem to make happen. I will always applaud a company that keeps a tight schedule.

I was a little disappointed that The Dirty’s valet Nakita wasn’t at the show, as I’m a big fan of her. However, I read later that she has left the act.

I spoke to the Green Hornet at the gimmick table. He told me that he is planning on running an event in Barberton in April.

Click here for more information about Ohio Championship Wrestling.

Click here for more information about Alicie’s Action Figure Frenzy.

Click here to contact Matt Fantone.


Reviewer: Ted Zep

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