AWE Night of the Legends: The Spiritual Sequel To Heroes Of Wrestling

AWE Night of the Legends
Date: October 15, 2011
Location: August Expoland, Fishersville, Virginia
Commentators: Chris Cruise, Dutch Mantell, Larry Zbyszko

This is a show that I’ve heard a lot of pretty bad things about for awhile now so you know I’m all over this one. It’s your typical “get some old guys together and have a show for a quick payday” deal with a main event of Ricky Morton vs. Kevin Nash. While that may seem random, they’ve had some legitimate heat between each other over some shoot interview comments. At least these guys are trying. Let’s get to it.

AWE stands for Awesome Wrestling Entertainment. You know we’re in for some good times tonight.

We open with a video talking about how tonight is the night the legends come home again. What legends live in Fishersville, Virginia?

The arena looks kind of like an old TNA arena but a bit darker. That’s not bad and WAY better than you get on some indy shows.

We’re told that AWE is AMERICAN. This is to prevent confusion with the Bolivian AWE.

The announcers talk about the show. Dutch Mantell is on commentary, just like at Heroes of Wrestling. I’m starting to have flashbacks.

Terry Funk vs. Tommy Dreamer

No DQ here because what else would it be? Dreamer is of course wearing an AWE shirt because if you want something advertised, call Tommy Dreamer. Funk immediately asks for a mic and says he always gets a physical before he gets in the ring. He yells at the fans but says he’s not supposed to be in a wrestler. Funk says he’s getting in the ring for the fans and Tommy Dreamer because Dreamer loves hardcore. Terry talks about getting older and meaner before blasting Dreamer in the face with the mic.

We head to the floor with Dreamer in trouble and getting a drink thrown into his face. Funk gets thrown into what looks like a school desk before Dreamer is thrown into a thick table. Terry starts throwing plastic chairs at Tommy and crotches him on the steel barricade. Back in and Funk fires off some headbutts including some on all fours. We head to the floor all over again with Dreamer being sent into the barricade again.

Tommy steals a drink and spits it in Terry’s face before heading back inside with a pair of chairs. They chop it out a bit and Dreamer is taken down onto a chair via a drop toehold. Funk goes after Tommy’s knee with a chair and puts on the Spinning Toe Hold. Dreamer hits him in the head with a chair, hits him in the ribs again, and rolls him up with a small package for the pin out of nowhere.

Rating: D. I do not like matches like this one. Terry Funk may think that he’s ready to be in the ring but he was 67 years old here and did not need to be out there in a wrestling ring. On top of that, the match itself was over out of nowhere (not that I’m complaining from one standpoint) as that small package hit in a flash. I’m guessing there was an injury in there, or perhaps they realized that a 67 year old man doesn’t need to be taking chair shots.

Funk takes out the referee because that’s what he does.

We get highlights of the match because twelve minutes of this isn’t enough yet.

Jamin Olivencia of OVW says that he’s ready to beat Sonjay Dutt again. When was the first match? In about forty seconds, he says Jamin Olivencia about 10 times. The Rock he is not.

Bill Apter, a famous publisher of the top wrestling magazines of the 80s, asks Sonjay Dutt about the upcoming match. Dutt doesn’t have much to say but it’s cool to see Apter.

Jamin Olivencia vs. Sonjay Dutt

Apparently these two are at least semi-regulars in AWE. They stare at each other a lot and Jamin shouts his name again. We immediately start talking about the main event as arm holds are traded. Jamin shouts for the third time and it’s a standoff. He starts to do it for the fifth but Sonjay grabs a headlock, making him the most popular act on the show so far. Really basic stuff so far until Sonjay nips up to slap Jamin in the face.

Things start speeding up a bit with Sonjay hitting a headscissors to send Jamin to the outside. Back in and Dutt snaps off a forearm to the head but Sonjay fires off even more shots to the face. What appeared to be a standing Lionsault is broken up and Jamin hits a running spinning splash for two. Off to a chinlock by Jamin for a bit until Sonjay fights out and sends him out to the floor. A BIG dive takes Jamin down and gets two back inside.

Olivencia hits a spinning clothesline for two but Dutt comes back with a running boot to the face and a springboard splash for two. Jamin comes back with a belly to back suplex to put both guys down. Sonjay fires off more kicks to stagger Jamin but gets hit by a jumping knee to the face. Olivencia backdrops him down but gets superkicked down as well. Sonjay wins a forearm slugout and we get the sunset flip/heel grabs the rope/referee kicks his arms free spot for two.

The referee gets bumped and Jamin hits a low blow on Sonjay, followed by the O Drop for the pin. What is the O Drop you ask? It appears to be a jumping DDT, but since the camera cut back to the referee with Jamin in mid jump, it might have been a carnival act similar to juggling oranges as 5000lbs of zucchini falls on Dutt for the pin.

Rating: C+. Until the ending here, this was getting pretty good. I’ve heard people say this show is at the level of Heroes of Wrestling or even worse which now scares me even more. Heroes had nothing of this level of speed or interest, so how bad can the rest of this show be? Anyway, these two looked good out there although Olivencia is pretty bland.

We get more highlights to eat up some time which I’m guessing is going to be a regular thing.

We get a clip from the contract signing for Morton vs. Nash. Nash signs with no issues and Morton talks about why he hates Kevin Nash. I kid you not, this is the explanation he gives: “Just go on the internet and type in ‘Ricky Morton hates Kevin Nash’ and you’ll find out what it’s all about.

Some heel manager (I think) named Rick Garrison joins commentary.

C.W. Anderson is ready for Perry Saturn.

Saturn cuts a goofy promo before getting even goofier.

Perry Saturn vs. C.W. Anderson

This is Saturn’s return match after being a homeless drug addict who people thought was dead for years. Saturn now has a tattoo on his face ala Mike Tyson. He also has a beer gut and no mustache now which is a weird look for him. Feeling out process to start with Saturn shoving Anderson into the corner. This appears to be the goofy Saturn again which isn’t really that fun to watch.

C.W. bails to the floor almost immediately and hits Saturn in the head with a chair as Saturn tries a suicide dive. Back in and Perry is busted open just a bit. Perry’s arm is sent into the buckle and we get our first psychology of the match. Off to an armbar as the match stays slow. A clothesline gets a very slow two count for Anderson and he throws Saturn to the floor for fun.

Back in and it’s back to the armbar as the announcers bicker about some nonsense. Anderson charges into a boot in the corner and Saturn takes him down with a bulldog. Back up and Saturn charges into a superkick for two but he comes back with a fast sunset flip for a very slow three count to win his return match.

Rating: D+. Considering this was his first match back in nine years, this was pretty good stuff. The problem here is mainly with Anderson. I’ve never gotten the appeal of this guy but he keeps getting work because of a few months he spent working with ECW near the end. Wrestling is funny that way.

Mohammed Akbar (OVW guy I think) talks about how he’s here fighting for Persian culture against Hacksaw Jim Duggan.

Duggan says he isn’t your usual old tough guy.

Mohammed Akbar vs. Jim Duggan

Akbar cuts a very generic heel promo about how rich he is which makes him better than us. Duggan finally cuts him off and it’s time to fight. We head to the ring and Jim slugs Akbar to the floor. It’s very clear here that Akbar is in WAY over his head here. A hiptoss puts Akbar down and we’re well into the usual Duggan formula here. Mohammed gets in a shot and hits the chinlock for a bit. After a minute long “bit”, Duggan fights up and hits the Three Point Clothesline for the easy pin. It’s as abrupt as it sounds.

Rating: D-. This was every Duggan match you’ve ever seen that fits the form of a Duggan match. Akbar is a guy from OVW and not a very good one at that. Duggan as the American patriot is about as basic gimmick as you could ask for and it will likely be kicking around some indy company for years to come.

Duggan yells at a whining Akbar post match.

Alex Silva, who I think was on Impact once, says that he’ll walk the walk against Finlay.

Finlay talks about experience and all that jazz.

Alex Silva vs. Fit Finlay

Silva has Tammy Lynn Sytch, aka Sunny, with him for no apparent reason. She has since been arrested six times in like six months so take this for what you will. Finlay shoves him down to start and knocks Silva to the floor with a forearm to the face. Back in and Finlay takes it to the mat with a headlock. Naturally the announcers talk about the main event in case someone has bought the show but doesn’t want to see the main event I guess.

Silva bails again and it’s back to a leg lock this time. We hit the headlock again as the match starts to drag already. Silva counters into a headscissors for about two minutes until Finlay fights up again. There’s an armdrag to put Silva down and Finlay fires off some knees to the back. A kind of Russian legsweep takes Silva down as we’re somehow over ten minutes into this match.

Finlay is sent into the corner where he tries to jump to the middle rope, only to fall down clutching his knee. We now basically stop all contact between the guys in the ring although Sunny does rake Finlay’s eyes a few times. Silva covers for two but then backs up again. Finlay drops to the floor and screams a lot but the referee won’t stop the match. We’re at four minutes now with no significant contact. Silva calls Finlay a coward so Fit charges back in and gets slugged down for a bit. Alex works on the knee with a DDT and stomps away a bit.

They head to the floor with Silva chopping away against the barricade and kicking at the knee a bit more. Back in and we hit another leg lock followed by a heel hook and an ankle lock. Even with the knee injury this is still very dull stuff. Finlay comes back with some chops but Silva sends him to the floor. Silva gets caught in the ring apron and Finlay pounds away before we go back inside. Finlay beats him up even more and manages a Regal Roll for two. Silva goes up but Finlay catches him in the Celtic Cross (think White Noise) but Tammy trips him. The distraction lets Silva hit Finlay low for the pin.

Rating: D. This was supposed to get Silva over, right? If that’s the case, this company has a very wrong idea about what it means to put someone over. This made him look like he couldn’t beat an old man without a freak injury, Sunny and a low blow. Why does that make me want to see Silva again? The match would have been boring with or without the injury so you can’t blame that either. Just a boring match.

Silva brags from the locker room.

Finlay says Silva better be out of the territory soon.

Short Sleeve Sampson vs. Abo Shongo

Now we get midgets. Oh joy. Sampson does a kind of rap but it’s absolutely awful and winds up with an “I say Short Sleeve, you say Sampson” chant. Shongo isn’t a midget and stands about 5’7, making this match even worse. The tale of the tape lists Shongo from Parts Unknown but Cruise says he’s from Cameroon. That’s the kind of show we’re dealing with here.

Sampson knocks him to the floor and tries a dive, only to stop when Shongo isn’t ready. As Abo comes back in, Short Sleeve crotches him and hits a low dropkick for two. Shongo clotheslines him right back down as this is already going nowhere. Cruise: “How do you pin a midget?” Dutch: “You lay him on the mat and hold his shoulders down for three.” Shongo hooks a cravate as this is going nowhere.

It’s off to a dragon sleeper for a few minutes until Sampson fights up and hits a dropkick. There’s an airplane spin by the midget and a low bulldog for no cover. There’s the “Inch Worm”….but Shongo rolls to the floor before it can hit. Shongo tries to throw some powder but it goes back in his own (painted white) face. Sampson finally finishes with a top rope splash.

Rating: D. It was stupid, it wasn’t interesting, it wasn’t a good match. Let’s get away from this so we can get on to the main event with people we might have heard of outside of Hulk Hogan’s Micro Championship Wrestling. Yeah you might remember Sampson from that so terrible it was great show.

We get another clip of the Nash/Morton contract signing with Nash hitting Morton with a chair. Apparently Nash’s partner was going to be someone named Marvin Ward but the Rock N Roll Express beat him up. This brought out the Midnight Express to beat up Ward as well. Diamond Dallas Page came out for the real save. This of course does not mean that Page is the mystery partner. Neither does Page being on the poster of the PPV along with Nash and the Express.

The RNRE, looking to be about 9000 years old each, say they’ll beat up Nash and his partner.

Nash says he doesn’t know why Morton hates him and says he doesn’t have anything to talk about. This goes on for awhile with mentions of Old Yeller. Ok then.

Rock and Roll Express vs. Kevin Nash/Diamond Dallas Page

Yeah to the shock of no one it’s Page. He’s in a t-shirt and jeans but at least he’s a big name to have in there. No mention is made of Page and Nash being former world tag team champions here. We start with Page and Gibson as Larry says Nash and Page never tagged together. Eh no one remembers 2001 WCW anyway.

Off to Nash before much happens but here’s Marvin Ward. Apparently he isn’t a wrestler but rather the AWE boss. This is now a one on one match so Gibson and Page are thrown out. Uh…..ok then? Oh and it’s now No DQ. So can’t Page and Gibson stay now? One more thing: Ronnie Garvin is guest referee, somehow looking younger than he did when he was world champion.

Nash pounds on Ricky to start and uses all of his power stuff. There goes the buckle pad and Morton takes Snake Eyes to bust him open. It hits again and Ricky is busted open. Back in and Nash gets two before choking away a bit. Morton slugs away again and pounds Nash down to one knee as this is starting to get decent. Nash comes back with a chokeslam but grabs a mic instead.

He asks what Morton’s problem is so Ricky goes into a rant about how this business is his life. Guys like Ronnie Garvin raised him in this business. Morton talks about how Nash was a jerk who was in it only for the money. Nash says if that’s Morton’s problem, then they don’t have a problem. They shake hands….and there’s a Jackknife to Ricky. Kevin grabs the mic and says of course it’s all about the money. “Why else do you go to work?” He doesn’t care about the fans as long as they keep buying his dolls and t-shirts. Nash isn’t one of the people suffering from the economic downturn…and he walks out for the countout.

Rating: I. We’ll call this incomplete. The match was good while it lasted but most of the match was spent talking about why they like the business. Other than that was only some decent stuff in the middle which was forgettable at best. This was the match that was set up for the entire show and what we got was good. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much of it that could be good.

Overall Rating: F+. This show is indeed terrible, but it’s certainly not Heroes of Wrestling bad. While that show was completely abysmal with the stupid skits and no idea of how to run a show, this at least had a few watchable matches. Dutt vs. Olivencia was some pretty decent stuff and is perfectly fine all things considered. It’s definitely not a good show or even a passable show, but there are FAR worse shows out there. This is much more forgettable than terrible which makes it less entertaining. It’s not worth seeing or anything and this isn’t going to be remembered in any distant time in the future.

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