Wrestling Review //
Pro Wrestling GRIND
Electric Crown
September 30, 2022
@ Pulaski Club, Easthampton, MA

        Though it had been almost three months since the last Pro Wrestling GRIND show at the Pulaski Club in Easthampton, MA once we got there it felt like it hadn't missed a beat.  The atmosphere inside of Pulaski is just something different and on this night, knowing that tournament matches were happening just made it feel so much more special.  Those wins and losses are crucial in GRIND (it's how we got to where we are now) but this night would start with eight competitors and when it was over it would come down to the final two.

The quarterfinals of the tournament were the first four matches on the show and then following an intermission there was a tag team match and then the semifinals.  I feel for purposes of writing this though it's just easier to look at each side of the tournament in itself and then the tag team match.   This all started with Rip Byson vs Ryan Mooney and in what set the tone for the entire tournament The Rabid Honey Badger picked up the win in what some might call an upset.   But if you've been paying attention to GRIND, you know Mooney will do whatever it takes to get that win.

Jay Freddie and Joseph Alexander had a great wrestling match, just using submissions and doing the chain wrestling with working various body parts to wear each other down.  I know GRIND really puts the pedal to the metal in the sense that it's hard hitting, but the high flying and technical aspect of it as well is not to be overlooked and this was every bit of that mat classic that I hoped it would be (and more).

I think the same thing about Joseph Alexander and Ryan Mooney can be said, after losing to Jay Freddie: It's okay, don't feel too badly, a lot of wrestlers lose to Jay Freddie- he's one of the absolute best.   Now, this could be said about a number of different wrestlers perhaps and it lives in the world of "what ifs" when the tournament is designed the way it is and everyone knew that going into it, but I truly believe if Ryan Mooney vs Jay Freddie happened a month after Mooney vs Byson, Mooney could've beaten Jay Freddie.

The experience of Jay Freddie though, I believe, is what helped him defeat both Joseph Alexander and Ryan Mooney in the same night.   And while those might feel like younger names to you, if you see the matches you'll wonder how anyone could've survived even one of them.  Jay Freddie is just built different.  He has that heart that you just can't learn but can only gain through years and years of experience.

On the other side of the tournament we had what could have been the finals in Perry Von Vicious vs Logan Black.   This whole tournament was fun because of so many possibilities for what the finals could have been and how they all could have meaning.  Logan Black and Rip Byson statistically had the best records in GRIND.  Perry Von Vicious vs Rip Byson would've been a battle of friends.  Even Rip Byson vs Travis Huckabee would've been a callback to the first show.  And then you just have something out of left field like Ryan Mooney vs Delmi Exo- which would've been a great match (and one I still want to see)

Logan Black had the crowd behind him but so did Perry Von Vicious so this was a very even match with Logan Black eventually getting the win.  Unfortunately, this meant Logan Black went onto face Travis Huckabee next.   Travis Huckabee had a hard fought win over Delmi Exo but he cheated to get into the finals, which I don't want to feel like we're just going to glance over the match between Huckabee and Delmi Exo.

There was one point in their match where it felt like Delmi Exo was going to win because Travis Huckabee hit these two brutal moves back to back that should've been the end of it but Delmi Exo kicked out and Huckabee barely got the one count.   It would have definitely also been interesting to see a semifinals with Delmi Exo vs Logan Black.  

The only way to describe the Logan Black vs Travis Huckabee match was in the closing moments of it.   With the ref down, Travis Huckabee looked like he was going to take out Logan Black with a chair.   However, Mike Skyros came into the ring and took the chair from Huckabee.  It looked like Skyros would hit Huckabee but instead he hit Logan Black, which allowed the ref to then wake up and give Travis Huckabee a tainted win.   This was a lot of steps when they could've had the same result if Skyros just let Huckabee use the chair in the first place.

I will say though there is one positive about Travis Huckabee cheating his way into the finals of this tournament.   If Logan Black had won it was Jay Freddie vs Logan Black, I would've felt conflicted on who I wanted to win.  The crowd would have either been split or behind both wrestlers for sure.  But now... as loved as Jay Freddie is, that is how much Travis Huckabee is hated.  So there is no confusion or crowd divided: it's simply cheer Jay Freddie, boo Travis Huckabee.

Taking a step back from the tournament for a moment, this show also featured The Mane Event (still undefeated!) vs Brick City Boyz (still without a win) and while everything is going on with the title tournament, if GRIND was having a tag team titles tournament this felt like it could have been the finals of that.  Both of these teams knew the other matches were elimination and so very important, so they turned it up as well.   This was the best Brick City Boyz match I've ever seen and one of the top The Mane Event matches I've ever seen as well.  

The crowd was also very much into The Mane Event.   The crowd was very much into Ryan Mooney as well.  It's really great seeing wrestlers who are popular in other places get the same treatment in GRIND but also seeing someone like Ryan Mooney come in as a lesser known name but really making that connection where the crowd loves him now.   After the Mooney-Freddie match there was this moment of respect and I really feel like if Jay Freddie wins it all his first title defense might be against The Rabid Honey Badger.  


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