MKW: Sam, Money, Ferguson, and Suzuki vs. Gunderson, Su, Dragon, and Lee (August 10, 2018)

Big Sam, Uncle Money, Cam Ferguson, & Johta Suzuki (w/ Chairman Al & Lady Marie) vs. Buck Gunderson, Michael Su, Zombie Dragon, & Junyan Lee (w/ Luan)

I like this match all right, but I’ll admit that I watched it in a bit of a rush and with no sound so as not to bother the other people in the room with me. Everyone looks competent; Su seems the greenest, but he gets a lot of experience taking bumps and selling for Big Sam here.

I’ve never seen three of these guys before – Gunderson, Lee, and Suzuki. Gunderson and Lee work for Battle Arts in Canada. I really like Gunderson’s intensity and hard work. Lee doesn’t get to do much in the match, but he does have one nice tope con giro spot. Pro Wrestling Alive’s Suzuki gets to do a bit more than that, and he looks fine, though I didn’t see anything that made me think, “Wow, I’ve got to look for more from this guy.”

The match starts as a brawl all over the place, then settles into the regular tag format. Su takes the heat for a long time. Then, in a bit of a reversal from the norm, multiple tags happen where guys on one side each challenge a specific guy on the other side to come face them. That usually happens earlier in these kinds of matches. Anyway, things get wonky when Zombie Dragon brings his flaming book into the ring and seems to hypnotize Uncle Money. Clips and images appear on the video screen that seem to be embarrassing old footage of Money. Dragon then chases Money out the door. This leaves Gunderson in the ring with Suzuki – the others are on the floor – and Buck pins him after a cross-legged suplex.

I definitely want to see more of Gunderson and Lee, especially to see what the latter can do in a less-convoluted environment.

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MKW: Zombie Dragon vs. Cam Ferguson (April 29, 2018)

Our Story So Far…
Zombie Dragon is creepy and mysterious. He’s coming off a green mist-assisted win over Black Mamba.
– Cam Ferguson is arrogant and loud. He claims to be the first graduate of the MKW wrestling school even though Michael Su finished before him. He’s coming off of a loss to former champion Hong Wan in a match I really liked.
– before the match, Cam comes out with a book and says that he’s the new MVP in MKW based on his performance in his debut. Since no one is man enough to face him, he decides to read from The Ferguson Family Book of Winners, but he only gets through “America” and “Donald Trump” before the book mysteriously catches fire (clever effect). That cues Zombie Dragon.

So this wasn’t quite up there with Cam vs. Hong Wan on my enjoyability scale due to a couple slip ups early on and at the finish, but I definitely liked it better than Zombie Dragon’s match with Black Mamba. I thought that match didn’t do Dragon any favors in his first appearance because Mamba got too much offense. It probably helped this match that both guys had already debuted before, so they weren’t working uphill to create a first impression.

Cam got to use his size to his advantage and throw Dragon around. Dragon’s a pretty good bumper, so this worked for me. Cam used a lot of Japanese-inspired offense, like a chop and punch rush in the corner and a sliding D. Dragon got a couple little comebacks; one came with a funny spot where Cam caught a kick and handed the foot off to the referee, but Dragon did an enzuigiri, the ref ducked, and Cam got hit. There was a big lariat after that, but then Cam missed a leg drop, and Dragon went after him with a couple high-flying things. It didn’t last long before Cam hit a big slam.

Cam wasted time arguing with the ref and taunting Dragon, giving Dragon enough time to load up a fireball and toss it at Cam. This was enough to put Cam down for the count.

Poor Zombie Dragon can’t seem to catch a break with his finishes, though. In his first match, he spit green mist at Black Mamba, but it was obviously off target. And then in this match, his fireball lit up in his hands but quickly flashed out before he threw it, so it never looked like it got even close to Cam’s face. Cam sold it anyway, which was probably the best option. Otherwise, they would have had to set the spot up again (if possible) or call an audible and do another finish. And honestly, it looked more believable than that fireball Hogan threw at Warrior at Halloween Havoc ’98, so I can’t complain too much.

Hopefully the third time will be a charm for Dragon’s creepy finishers.

MKW: Hong Wan vs. Cam Ferguson (March 17, 2018)

Our Story So Far…
“Selfie King” Hong Wan recently lost the MKW Championship to Big Sam in Shenzhen, then lost a rematch at a big MMA show.
Cam Ferguson used to be the color commentator for MKW TV. This is his in-ring debut.

Cam cuts a pre-match promo. He insults the crowd and declares himself the “director of studies” of MKW. He also says that he’s the first graduate of the Middle Kingdom Wrestling school (even though we learned last time that Michael Su finished before him). He issues an open challenge, and Hong Wan answers. Hong Wan says that he respects Cam, but Cam needs to respect the people. Cam slaps Hong Wan, and it’s on. Pretty good segment here. Cam has a way with the microphone.
Now on to the match!

Now here’s a match that tells its story and doesn’t overstay its welcome. Cam gets the upper hand through crafty-yet-legal means and methodically works over Hong Wan. Hong fights back but gets caught with a big slam, and then Cam gets cocky and jaws with the fans. This of course allows Hong Wan to take over. Cam does get control again later, but he can’t put the former champ away, even after killing him with a lariat. After a confusing bit where the ref counts three but doesn’t actually call for the bell, Hong Wan gets the pin with his standing moonsault.

Cam impressed me. He knows how to talk with confidence and string sentences together in a more natural and impactful way than a lot of other guys around here. He looks comfortable in the ring. He knows how to milk holds and fill the gaps between moves; he doesn’t rush through things. He seems to me like he knows how to tell a story and not just copy the flashy stuff he’s seen on TV. He’s not Arn Anderson quite yet, but he’s certainly a breath of fresh air.

Hong Wan looked fine. There are still moments where he seems to me like he doesn’t quite know his way around the ring or where he wastes time trying to figure out what to do. But his moonsault looks better than ever.

The botched three count hurt things a little for me, but not as much as stuff like that usually does. I actually would have believed it as the finish if they would’ve gone with it, and maybe they were supposed to. I don’t know whose fault it was, but it’s not a big deal.