PROGRESS Chapter 74: Midweek Matters
By Big Red Machine
From July 25, 2018
THUNDERBASTARD TAG TEAM SERIES MATCH:
Aussie Open vs. 198 ("Flash" Morgan Webster & Wild Boar) - 6.75/10
I'm not really a fan of anyone in this match other than Mark Davis, so this was a pleasant surprise to me.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT - Good. Vicky Haskins came out with a barbed-wire baseball bat to distract Webster so her husband could sneak up behind him with a chair but Webster was able to avoid.
PROGRESS WOMEN'S TITLE MATCH:
Jinny(c) (w/the House of Couture) vs. Millie McKenzie (w/Candyfloss) - 4.75/10
The match was much shorter than you'd expect. Also running counter to expectations, that evil Jinny won! BOOOOOOO! I'd have preferred for the referee to be down for such blatant run-ins, even if the heels never actually hit Millie, though those spots certainly did serve the dual purposes of having Jinny get outside help while letting us fans see Suplex Millie in all of her suplexing glory.
CHRIS RIDGEWAY vs. EDDIE DENNIS vs. PETE DUNNE vs. MARK HASKINS (w/Vicky Haskins)- 7.5/10
The majority of this match was the four-way story with the one heel getting on the nerves of the three babyfaces and finally getting his comeuppance. Haskins then had the Star Armbar on both Dune and Ridgeway at the same time but Webster came out and accosted Vicky, and when Haskins went to save his wife, Haskins was attacked by Wild Boar, with Vickiy being forced to watch. Ridgeway and Dunne then had a great finishing sequence, with Dunne taking home the win but Ridgeway definitely getting over in defeat.
THUNDERBASTARD TAG TEAM SERIES MATCH FOR THE PROGRESS TAG TEAM TITLES:
Grizzled Young Veterans(c) vs. The Anti-Fun Police (Chief Deputy Dunne & Los Federales Santos Jr.) - 5/10
I was expecting comedy and these guys just had a normal wrestling match. There was a bit of a story with accidentally hitting your partner in a big spot costing each team, but other than that the match was relatively nondescript.
PROGRESS ATLAS TITLE MATCH:
Doug Williams vs. T.K. Cooper - 6.75/10
POST-MATCH SEGMENT - Awesome. We're getting Doug Williams vs. Trent Seven at Wembley for the title, and Trent cut one hell of a promo to set it up.
#1 CONTENDERSHIP MATCH:
Laura Di Matteo vs. Toni Storm - 7/10
This was one neck of a competitive and mean babyface vs. babyface match. Toni Storm might have the best Piledriver in wrestling right now. Toni got the win, which means we're heading for Toni vs. Jinny again. On the one hand, I really do want to see Toni get revenge on Jinny and her crew, but on the other hand, the news that they're going to WWE makes this feel like something PROGRESS should be moving away from. I think it would have been better to reverse the finishes in both of tonight's women's match matches and then build up to Jinny vs. Toni as a grudge match, without the belt being involved.
NO COUNT-OUTS MATCH FOR THE PROGRESS CHAMPIONSHIP:
Travis Banks(c) (w/T.K. Cooper) vs. WALTER - 8/10
They started off on the outside to emphasize that count-outs couldn't save Banks. WALTER dominated, despite Cooper's attempts to get involved, but Banks took advantage of the referee being distracted by Cooper to take WALTER's leg out with a chair. That became the story from there, with WALTER having to overcome both a bad wheel and Banks' various attempts to screw him to retain the belt. Banks eventually tried to just get out of the match by getting himself DQed but Tyler Bate, who Banks screwed out of the belt at the last show, came out and ruined that plan. WALTER won soon thereafter in a match that, while awesome, still manages to feel a little disappointing for a major title change. It probably would have helped if things had a little time to breathe and they had gone twenty minutes instead of fourteen.
Despite the slight disappointment of the main event, this was a pretty good show from PROGRESS full of title defenses, #1 contendership matches, and other segments that truly felt important. A great way to leave off before their big US tour.