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Fusion #91
Date: January 4, 2020
Location: Melrose Ballroom, New York City, New York
Commentators: AJ Kirsch, Rich Bocchini

We’re still in New York to start the new year and it’s time for the semifinals of the Opera Cup. The first set of matches were pretty good and hopefully the semifinals and finals should be fine. Other than that, because it has been at least a week, we have another Jimmy Havoc vs. Mance Warner match. Let’s get to it.

Mance Warner yells about how he and Jimmy Havoc have fought several times. They’ve busted each other open and now Jimmy has left him bandaged up. Havoc needed his princess to help bust him open so Warner is going to put all that in his pockets and carry it with him to Dallas, Texas for their barbed wire match.

Opening sequence.

Here’s Tom Lawlor, in a Von Erichs shirt, with someone we don’t know. All anyone wants to talk to Lawlor about is the Von Erich family but that’s because they’re idiots. The only people dumber than them are these fans and Lawlor sees a lot of fakes in the crowd. In the back though, he sees a couple of fake Von Erichs so tonight, Tom wants to face the greatest Von Erich: Lance’s son RIP VON ERICH!

Tom Lawlor vs Rip Von Erich

Rich: “Who the h*** is this ham and egger???” Lawlor offers Rip (who is a bit short) a test of strength before shouldering him down. Rip tries another shoulder and bounces off of Lawlor before it’s time to work on the wrist. Now it’s a half crab as Lawlor starts in with the torture. Rip fights up, spins around a few times, and misses a discus punch. That sets up the airplane spin so Rip tries the Claw, earning himself a rear naked choke, complete with a Claw, to give Lawlor the win at 3:20.

Result: Tom Lawlor b. Rip Von Erich – Rear naked choke (3:20)

Post match Lawlor celebrates his victory over the Von Erichs. He’s ready for people to be cheering for him instead of the Von Erichs. Cue Ross and Marshall but the Spirit Squad of all people jump them from behind and the big beatdown is on. Even the corner man helps in with the stomping.

It’s the Zero Hour Control Center, focusing on Gino Medina and the AAA partnership. Oh and barbed wire of course.

We look at Contra attacking the debuting Stronghearts last week.

Richard Holliday and Alexander Hammerstone want Gino Medina in the Dynasty when Salina de la Renta comes in to laugh at the. Hammerstone says stop c*** blocking them but she doesn’t know what she’s blocking.

Davey Boy Smith Jr. is ready to out wrestle Hammerstone to make the finals of the Opera Cup. Fatigue is going to set in on Hammerstone and the submissions are coming.

Opera Cup Semifinals: Alexander Hammerstone vs. Davey Boy Smith Jr.

Non-title, Holliday is with Hammerstone and MJF is on commentary because we’re a lucky audience this week. After MJF is bored with Smith and refuses a handshake with AJ without a lot of hand sanitizer, we’re ready to go with a battle over wristlocking. Smith takes him down for a double arm crank with AJ talking about leverage. MJF: “AJ the word is shut your mouth and stop making eye contact.”

Smith it sent hard into the ropes and has to skin the cat, only to have Holliday grab his foot. Hammerstone hits a bicycle kick (MJF: “HE GOT A BICYCLE!”) and they go outside with Smith being dropped back first onto the barricade. Back in and Hammerstone stomps away in the corner as MJF goes into a tirade about a suggestion that he isn’t the leader of the Dynasty.

Hammerstone puts on the chinlock and demands that the referee ask him in Canadian (heard something similar before and it’s still funny). That’s broken up in a hurry so Hammerstone hits a dropkick (MJF: “THE MEAT CASTLE! GETTING AIR! AJ, was that dropkick tough enough???) for two, setting up something like a seated abdominal stretch. Smith fights back up and wins a slugout, including some right hands in the corner.

A big boot into the legdrop sends MJF into a short rant about how un-American these fans are for cheering for a Canadian. The Nightmare Pendulum is loaded up but Smith counters into the Crossface, only to have Holliday offer a distraction. MJF: “There’s clearly a bug on his kickpad!” Hammerstone kicks Holliday by mistake (MJF: “WHAT’S GOING ON??? NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”) and it’s a running powerslam into a Swan Dive to give Smith the pin at 8:55. MJF: “WHO THE H*** IS STU HART???”

Result: Davey Boy Smith Jr. b. Alexander Hammerstone – Swan Dive (8:55)

Post match Hammerstone loads up a handshake but Holliday pulls him away.

Brian Pillman Jr. is used to being the underdog because he left his home at 13 and no one helped him get into wrestling. Cue Injustice, who thinks they should be getting this interview time. They threaten Pillman with violence, because if Pillman is hurt, they get his spot as the alternates.

Contra is ready to destroy the Strong Hearts.

Erick Stevens is coming.

Video on Low Ki.

Strong Hearts vs. Contra

Cima is getting a World Title shot against Jacob Fatu in February so there are some future tie-ins here. Gotch and Cima chop it out to start with Cima shrugging off a takedown and hitting a dropkick. Another dropkick to the back sends Gotch into the corner and it’s Lindaman coming in for his own shot to the back. The much smaller Lindaman is brought into the Contra corner and the stomps/chops begin.

Gotch rakes him with the boot in the corner and it’s Fatu coming in for the real beating. Gotch’s suplex makes it worse for Lindaman and he’s smart enough to drag things back into the corner. There’s a low superkick from Fatu but Lindaman slugs away and even manages to get him up for a slam. Unfortunately he can’t turn it over though and Fatu falls on top of him with a big crash.

Lindaman finally gets over and it’s Irie, the big man, coming in with a slingshot splash for two on Gotch. To mix it up a bit, Irie piledrives Samael onto Gotch for the double knockdown and it’s time for the hoss fight between Irie and Fatu. An exchange of clotheslines doesn’t go very far but Fatu gets the better of an exchange of crossbodies. A handspring moonsault gets two on Irie and everything breaks down with all six heading outside.

Irie hits a suicide dive on Fatu, who jumps back inside to hit his own, giving us those crazy eyes. Back in and Fatu can’t quite beat up all three of them at once, allowing Cima to knee him in the head, setting up Lindaman’s bridging German suplex for two. Lindaman hits a big flip dive onto Gotch but Fatu hits a pop up Samoan drop on Cima. The double springboard moonsault finishes Cima at 11:01.

Result: Contra b. Strong Hearts – Double springboard moonsault to Cima (11:01)

Lawlor challenges the Von Erichs to defend their Tag Team Titles against his two best students.

Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 50,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 5,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at kbwrestlingreviews.com, or check out his- Amazon author page with 30 wrestling books. His latest book is KB’s Complete 2004 Monday Night Raw Reviews.

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