The Lord of the Ring continues through the Holiday season, it's...
LIVE! From Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada (19,800 Capacity)
------------------ The Lord of the Ring- Week Two:
We're into week two and Lord of the Ring presses on. Legends returned and the roster battled through, but tonight we will have our three competitors who will appear in the Royal Court match at the LOTR Pay Per View in January. Who will go through? Time will tell.
Deadline for matches is Wednesday, December 17, 2014 at 11:59 Eastern Standard Time.
Voting will start at this time and conclude on Friday, December 19, 2014, 2014 at 11:59 Eastern Standard Time.
[CST is one hour earlier. GMT is five hours later.]
Hana Ramirez: The following contest set for one-fall is for Round Two of the Lord of the Ring Tournament!
“I realize the screaming pain,
Hearing loud in my brain;
But I’m going straight ahead, with the scar.”
The rising music of FLOW’s “Sign” heralds the entrance of Declan James and his enforcer Teddy Colton from behind the curtain. Declan has the XWA Gladitorial Title strapped on his person like a baldric. Even the confused reactions from those in attendance was not enough to deter Declan, but the cheers for the Gimmick Killer were still prominent. The Gimmick Killer glowers towards the ring as he drops the sunglasses he was wearing, and crushes them with his wrestling boot. Teddy joins the Anti-Gimmick Crusader in his walk down the ramp. Declan starts throwing t-shirts from a stack as he walks down the ramp and aisle to ringside.
Hana Ramirez: Introducing first, being accompanied to the ring by Teddy Colton! From Tokyo by way of San Diego, weighing in at 197 lbs. He is the XWA Gladitorial Champion! This man needs no gimmick… DECLAN JAMES!
Matt Steel: First he insults the fans for supporting gimmicks, and now he’s giving free t-shirts to them? What a hypocrite!
Rose: Only you can be a Grinch on Christmas!
Mark Sanction: A lot of bile has been spewed in the XWA by Declan James, and now it is leading for this most anticipated match to culminate in the Lord of the Ring Tournament!
Matt Steel: I still hate the Gimmick Killer; I’ll say that much.
Declan jumps up to the apron, and hops over the ropes and up to the turnbuckles, as Teddy starts shooting t-shirts out to the fans! Declan starts shouting out to the fans, “A man who abandons a Championship is no champion at all!” is one of Declan’s tirades he said while the last t-shirt is being shot out to the fans in the cheap seats. “Sign” stops playing as the chants start up again.
I am an arms dealer
Fitting you with weapons in the form of words
And don't really care which side wins
As long as the room keeps singing
That's just the business I'm in, yeah
"This Ain't a Scene" by Fall Out Boy begins to play on the speakers. The lights cut yellow and all zoom to the entrance stage as Dan Bennett walks out onto it, looking out into the crowd. The reception for him is much more mixed than usual, though Declan’s tirade against Dan abandoning the Television Title doesn’t earn him some extra brownie credit this time. Regardless, the XWA veteran stops to stare at the fans around, his yellow and black gear accentuated by the lights. He sports a generic XWA shirt, but quickly peels it off and tosses it off into the crowd and jogs down the ramp, no flash or flair as has been tradition with Dan Bennett.
Hana Ramirez: And his opponent, from Columbus, Ohio, weighing in at 255 lbs. He is a Triple Crown champion, former XWA World Heavyweight Champion, former International Champion, former Hardcore champion, as well as the former and final XWA Television title winner. He is… DAN BENNETT!
Matt Steel: His dark side is showing pretty well!
Rose: Declan James has been disparaging Dan Bennett since the Television Title was deactivated. Though the Gimmick Killer has his reservations against Dan, one of the Triple Crown Champion has his eyes set more on Jericho Shaw’s World Heavyweight Title.
Mark Sanction: These two combustible elements are about to explode!
Dan continues down the ramp, stopping at the end of the decline and looking into the nearby camera. No remark, not even a wink, and he jumps in place, loosening up, then runs and slides into the ring. He turns to Declan James, whom sits in his corner, unimpressed by the style of Dan Bennett’s entrance. Teddy Colton takes off his vest and his shirt dropping them atop the empty t-shirt launcher as he grimaces towards Bennett. Dan warns Teddy to stay out of his way as the enforcer drops down to ringside. The music fades to silence as Jack Tickles make sure everything is solid between the two. Declan removes the Gladitorial Title from his person, and shakes it wildly in his signature fashion, before raising it in the air, and shouting, “You don’t even deserve to look at this strap, Dan!” He removes his jacket, and hands both title and coat to Jack Tickles, as he brings them to ringside, and calls for the match to start.
DING DING DING!
Declan and Dan come to the middle of the ring to face each other. Both competitors exchange insults to each other, before the Anti-Gimmick Champion gives a mean right hook to Dan’s jaw! First shot fired, and Dan comes back with a flurry of fists of his own! Jack Tickles has to step in to keep this from becoming a brawl. He had them back up to their corners, warning each competitor to keep the combat in wrestling.
Matt Steel: Why did Jack Tickles have to stop that! We would’ve had two of the worst stars in XWA tear themselves apart!
Rose: Only you would appreciate an unprovoked brawl, Steel!
Mark Sanction: The Gimmick Killer isn’t taking kindly to the fact that there was no response to the criticism over Dan vacating the Television title immediately after winning it. And Declan believed that whatever value the TV Title had in the XWA was tarnished by a dick move that the Anti-Gimmick Champion took exception to.
Once there was several degrees of separation between the competitors, the match was allowed to continue. Declan jumps forward with a shoulder tackle, and knocks Dan down quickly. He leaps onto Dan to try and get the Stockades locked in but Dan quickly counters with a backbreaker, and drops Declan like a bad habit! Dan with the cover.
Declan isn’t ready for that, but he was prepared for the leg drop that was coming and dodged it! Declan gets up and hits a jumping Shooting Star Press, and grabs both legs in the pin.
2…KICKOUT AFTER THE REF COUNTED TWO!
Declan rolls away getting some degrees of separation as the thousands in attendance start to cheer a little for the skills of both competitors. Declan bounces of the ropes, but and uses a little Rolling Thunder to get out of the way, bounces off the ropes again, and countered a running tackle with a corkscrew flying forearm smash!
Mark Sanction: Now that is what I call using a corkscrew to an advantage!
Matt Steel: A sneaky move if I ever seen one!
Rose: Sneaky move or not, it doesn’t matter to the Gimmick Killer! The ends justify the means!
The Anti-Gimmick Champion takes his stomps on the former World Champion a couple times before spreading his legs wide, and hitting a double leg drop to the midsection! Declan rolls back then kips up, and adds on to the pain with a standing senton! Declan James with a Schoolboy.
Declan tries to get Dan into a Sharpshooter, but he gets kicked off and falls out of the ring. Teddy Colton checks on Deck, and the Gimmick Killer growls at him. “Not yet!” Declan slowly gets up but gets hit with a DIVING FOREARM SMASH BY DAN BENNETT TAKING BOTH DECLAN AND HIS ENFORCER DOWN!
Crowd: HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT! HOLY SHIT!
Mark Sanction: Both these wrestlers are quite athletic! Even those in attendance can see it.
Matt Steel:Which one has the blood lust to take the other out?
Rose: Luckily, this is a non-title match, but Declan James is not being counted out just yet!
CLANG! Declan is Irish Whipped into the steel steps! While the commentators were doing the usual banter, Dan was working on Declan, with the count up to four. Dan then proceeds to bash the Gimmick Killer’s head into the apron.
Dan gets Declan up into the ring and rolls in after him. He goes for the pin.
The former World Champion pins Declan again, this time with a forearm to the face.
Dan doesn’t argue with the ref, and instead locks in a knee bar. Declan starts screaming in pain, while the elder referee Tickles checks if Declan wants to tap. Declan uses what strength he has to reach for the ropes. After a minute of realizing that it’s hopeless, Declan then starts pounding on Dan to get him to release the hold.
Matt Steel: Declan’s in dire straits, now!
Rose: Take the legs out of the equation, and Declan can’t use them against Dan.
Mark Sanction: Dan’s just relentless with Declan after such a show of disrespect that got him angry.
Declan is freed from the hold, only because Dan is trying to hook on an ankle lock. He’s using it to further the damage to Declan’s legs! Declan twisted, and kicked Dan off, but the damage is done! Dan goes to grounding and pounding, but the Gimmick Killer goes for a gogoplata, and Dan avoids it! Declan is using the ring ropes to help himself up. His left leg looking as if it was hurt. Dan charges in for an attack, but Declan avoids it and Dan ends up eating turnbuckle! Dan starts to walk dazed out of the corner, but the Anti-Gimmick Champion kicks him in the gut, and adds on a quick headlock, and climbs up the ropes… TORNADO DDT! Declan goes for a cover.
SHOULDER UP AT TWO-POINT-NINE!
Declan still having problems with his ankle as he backs up. He’s ready his fist for the Extreme Prejudice. Dan gets up, and Declan runs into a jump. Dan avoids it in an attempt to hit Breakdown 2.0, but he doesn’t avoid the next move… URUSAI! The Pele Kick knocks Dan down, and the Anti-Gimmick Champion kips up shaking the feeling back into his ankle, as he waits for Dan to get up!
Rose: Now there’s the standard I like to see from the Gimmick Killer!
Mark Sanction: This may mean that it may be the end for the final TV Champion, or does Dan have a trick up his sleeve?
Matt Steel: Fuck the tricks! All Dan will need is a flub on Deck’s part so he can beat that little shit into the canvas!
Declan used the off-balanced Dan to his advantage and puts in an inverted headlock, AND TWISTS IT INTO THE DWI! DEAD WEIGHT IMPLOSION! Declan goes for the Jackknife pin…
Declan is shocked about Dan kicking out to the DWI! He argues with the ref, until Dan rolls him up to try for the quick win, but Declan reverses it into a small package!
EXPLOSIVE KICKOUT AT 2.999995!
Dan staggers up as Declan is trying to catch his breath. Declan charges in for another attempt at Extreme Prejudice, WONDER NO MORE! AA SPINEBUSTER LAYS THE GIMMICK KILLER OUT!
Crowd: THIS IS AWESOME! (HOLY SHIT!) THIS IS AWESOME! (HOLY SHIT!)
Dan goes for the pin, this time using ropes for leverage…
TEDDY KNOCKS DAN OFF THE PIN FROM THE OUTSIDE!
Matt Steel: TELL ME THAT JACK TICKLES SAW THAT!
Mark Sanction: It seems that it takes interference to get stop an illegal pin on the Gladitorial Champion!
Rose: Quick thinking from Teddy Colton, who doesn’t want to see his ally lose tonight!
Dan picks up the Gimmick Killer, and tries for the Sacrifice, but Declan struggles his way out of the hold, and counters… JUMPING CUTTER FROM OUT OF NOWHERE! Declan gets to the corner and climbs up to the top rope. He looks back and shrugs his shoulders. GRAVE DRILLER! GRAVE DRILLER! DECLAN GOES FOR THE PIN!
THREE! DECLAN WINS A MILLISECOND BEFORE DAN CAN KICK OUT!
DING DING DING!
Hana Ramirez: And here is your winner, advancing to the Royal Court Match… the XWA Gladitorial Champion, DECLAN JAMES!
Declan was handed back his title as Teddy Colton enters the ring. Declan shakes the belt wildly and raises it high in the air! Those in attendance still had a mixed reaction to Declan’s win, but was mostly cheering because the match was over. With his back to Dan, he wipes his feet on the canvas in disrespect to Dan Bennett. Tommy Tickles come down to Jack and check the footage and see if Declan actually won the match or Dan kicked out in time.
Matt Steel: Does anyone give a shit that I still hate Declan James!
Rose: Hate him or not, The Anti-Gimmick Champion advances to the Royal Court Match! Declan’s fought his way through that match!
Mark Sanction: Let’s see who else advances tonight! We’ll be right back!
The Gimmick Killer LIVES!
The ONLY Gladiatorial Champion that Matters
We fade into backstage, Declan James and Teddy Colton are walking through the halls toward the entrance curtain. Declan and Teddy stop just before the curtain and look at each other.
Teddy Colton: Are you sure you want me to stay back here tonight?
Declan James: Yeah. The last thing I need is a "manager gets me wins" gimmick. You know how much I *love* gimmicks.
Teddy Colton Well alright... Good luck out there, Deck.
Declan and Teddy bro-hug, perhaps too long, who knows. Teddy stays in the hall as Declan steps up to curtain. We then cut to the ring.
Mark Sanction: That's interesting, to say the least.
Rose: Declan's just trying to stick to his guns, that's all. He's the "no gimmicks" guy, why would he start having one now?
Matt Steel: Probably cos he's about to get his shit kicked in by Dan.
Hana Ramierez: This match is set for one fall, and is the second round of the Lord of the Ring tournament! Introducing first...
“I realize the screaming pain,
Hearing loud in my brain;
But I’m going straight ahead, with the scar.”
Mark Sanction: Oh, this guy had been nothing but impressive lately!
Rose: Certainly has, Mark. The fact that he's the inaugural Gladiatorial Champion is fact enough.
Emerging from the curtain is Declan James as the music of FLOW's "Sign" kicks into full gear. The only thing new on the Gimmick Killer is the XWA Gladitorial Championship worn over his jacket. Even the confused myriad of reactions from those in attendance was not enough to deter Declan, but the cheers for the Gimmick Killer was a lot more prominent. The Gimmick Killer glowers towards the ring as he drops the sunglasses he was wearing, and crushes them with his wrestling boot. He raises the title into the air and smirks.
Hana Ramierez: ...hailing from Tokyo, Japan, by way of San Diego, California... weighing in at one-hundred ninty-seven pounds. He is the XWA Gladitorial Champion... This man needs no gimmick… DECLAAAAAAAAAN JAAAAAAAAAAAAAMES!
Declan hops up on the apron, walking across it and scraping his boots off before stepping into the ring and "Signs" by FLOW fades out. He walks around the ring and steps up on the second turnbuckle, raising the title again and shouting at the audience, the reaction he receives being quite mixed. A chant does begin to rise up through the reactions, though.
I am an arms dealer
Fitting you with weapons in the form of words
And don't really care which side wins
As long as the room keeps singing
That's just the business I'm in, yeah
This AIN'T a SCEEEEEEEENE it's a GOD DAMN ARMS RACE!
This AIN'T a SCEEEEEEEENE it's a GOD DAMN ARMS RACE!
This AIN'T a SCEEEEEEEENE it's a GOD DAMN ARMS RACE!
I'm not a shoulder to cry on but I digress...
Rose: I'm still not used to this music. Seriously.
"This Ain't a Scene" by Fall Out Boy begins to play on the speakers. The song is allowed to progress to the first chorus-1 before we finally see Dan burst through the curtain. The lights cut yellow and all zoom to the entrance stage as Dan Bennett walks onto it, looking out into the crowd. The reception for him still mixed, but it's clear he's getting more cheers than boos by now, but him being at odds against Smith Jones is still spoiling some people's opinion of him. Regardless, the XWA veteran stops to stare at the fans around, his yellow and black gear brightly accentuated by the flashing lights. He bears a Rated X throwback shirt (now available on XWAshop.com now for only 24.99) but quickly peels it off and tosses it deep into the crowd.
Hana Ramierez: ...hailing from Columbus, Ohio, and weighing in at two-hundred fifty-five pounds, he is a triple crown champion, former XWA World Heavyweight Champion, former International Champion, former Hardcore champion, former and final XWA Television title winner... DAAAAAAAN BEEEEEENNNNNEEEEETTTTTT!
Rose: Dan's really come back with a vengeance, hasn't he?
Mark Sanction: This guy, man. Just when you thought his career was over, he comes back almost better than before.
Matt Steel: Don't ever count out anyone that's ever been in Rated X. Fuckin' ever.
Dan approaches the ring and stops, staring in the ring at Declan. James, in turn, raises the title in the air and talks trash, though due to the music intelligible to Bennett, and Dan hops up on the apron. He looks to step in, but Declan starts toward him and Kirk Samson backs him off. Chuckling, Dan then proceeds into the ring and climbs one of the near turnbuckles, singing along with the crowd as the chorus-2 comes up (This AINT a SCEEEEEEEENE...). He turns after that chorus 2 and hops down as the lights go back to normal and the song fades out.
Matt Steel: This ish is about to get real for Declan. Bad news, man: you're fucked.
Mark Sanction: I'm telling you, Matt. Do NOT overlook Declan James. This guy has been impressive lately. He's not the Gladiatorial Champion for nothing.
Matt Steel: Look, you already told me this. He beat some fucking bum and took a title that my man here indirectly threw away. I'm not impressed at all.
Kirk Samson, our official for this match, checks with both men to make sure they're ready for this bout to begin. Dan nods, then Declan does the same. Samson, now satisfied that this match may begin, signals for the bell to sound and it does, starting this match! Declan and Dan both step out of their respective corners and Dan stops, talking to Declan for a moment.
Dan Bennett: Gladiatorial rules work for you?
Declan James: Your funeral. Sure.
Rose: Did I hear that right? Gladiatorial rules?
Mark Sanction: Guess there still is real wrestling in XWA after all.
Matt Steel: Either that, or he plans on beating this bitch at his own game.
Dan grins at the bold statement, extends his hand, and James quickly shakes it before both men step back. Dan lowers his center of gravity a little, putting his hands out in front of him, wiggling his fingers and getting ready for action. Declan steps back as well, raising his hands up and both men leap at each other, locking horns in a collar-and-elbow tie-up. After a moment passes, Declan ducks behind Dan, grabbing an arm on the way and twisting it behind him in a hammerlock. Dan slaps his arm a few times to relieve the pressure, then ducks underneath and reverses the hold into his own hammerlock. Before Declan can react, Dan shoves him powerfully in the back, James stumbling across the ring but stopping his motion by grabbing onto the ropes. He turns back to Dan, the former XWA Champion giving the XWA's newest champion a complete stoneface, not revealing any information for Declan to read from it.
Matt Steel: Dan taking over this ish already. Just call the match. Declan's done.
Rose: Not quite, Matt. Declan's a tough little bastard. Don't underestimate him.
Mark Sanction: He IS in the second round of the tournament after all. He's not here by mistake.
Matt Steel: Mark are you stuck on repeat? You keep saying the same ish over and over about Declan James.
Mark Sanction: No, I'm fine. I maaaay have had an aneurysm earlier tonight. Not sure though.
The two men sizing each other up again, Bennett and James tie up for a second time, the two men struggling against each other's effort. Dan is the early aggressor this time, disengaging and pulling Declan's head down in a schoolyard headlock. With both hands linked, he pulls on the neck of the gimmick killer, the shorter man struggling to remove his cranium against Bennett's strong arms. Declan's face begins to change colors, and he decides on the fly to pull Dan backwards into the ropes and he does, giving Dan a push into them and the away from them, throwing Bennett in an improvised Irish whip. The former XWA Champ runs across the ring, hits the ropes and comes running back toward Declan who runs back at Dan and leaps toward the ground sideways, precisely scissoring his legs around Dan's with a drop toe hold, the larger man losing his vertical base and falling face-first onto the mat.
Mark Sanction: Ah, see! Declan's got the upper hand now!
Matt Steel: Bro, is he paying you? Cos it seems like you're sucking his dick.
Rose: This is just the feeling out phase, but Declan is pretty impressive. Dan's definitely no slouch either.
Dan raises his upper torso off the mat and check his jaw, the impact certainly jarring it and with his jaw having been broken earlier in the year due to a Kingslayer from Jericho Shaw, one can't be too careful. Declan, however, has no intentions of allowing Bennett any time to rest and gets back to his feet in a flash, jumping over Dan's body and dropping down to a knee, hooking his raised head in a headlock of his own. Cranking the hold, James tightens his grip and Dan brings himself up to all fours. Placing his hands on Declan James's torso, he uses his leg strength and raises both himself and James to vertical bases. Dan then ducks down and lifts and throws Declan over in a release back suplex, but James instead lets go of the hold and flips backwards over Bennett, landing on his feet!
Rose: Dan with the escape-and Declan with the reversal!
Matt Steel: Actually, that was pretty legit.
Rose: The back and forth here is incredible, but Declan's speed advantage is getting the better of Dan.
Matt Steel: Declan's just a crafty bastard. I can appreciate that. But he's still gonna lose.
Before Dan can even react, the gimmick killer jumps and plants both feet on the back of Bennett's shoulders, dropkicking him forward into the ropes where he catches himself and rests for a second. Still determined to stay on top of Bennett, he gets up and runs at Dan, leaps, and drills Bennett again in the back with a dropkick. Dan is smashed between the steel cables of the ropes and the full body weight of Declan James and Dan rebounds off of the ropes, falling back-first to the mat, wincing in pain. Declan turns onto his stomach and, looking over at Bennett on his back, he quickly crawls over to and then onto Bennett with a cover!
Matt Steel: Not even close, bud.
Dan forcefully pushes Declan off of him just after the one count, the Rated X Alumni showing his power, and Declan gets right back to work by turning Bennett onto his stomach and grabbing an arm, twisting it behind Bennett and he pins the wrist of Bennett down on his back. James then jumps into the air, driving a knee into the right shoulder of Bennett and after the impact, he digs his knee into that shoulder, pulling on the wrist to contort Dan's whole arm, drawing a grimace to on the face of Dan. Bennett can't take a whole lot of unanswered punishment; after all, he did get into a all-out war with Bancroft the week before. He uses his free arm and, despite possible further damaging of his arm, he pulls himself inch by inch toward the bottom rope. Declan stops resting his weight on Bennett to try and drag Dan back to the middle of the ring but Bennett takes advantage of the mistake and leaps toward the ropes. Although Samson follows the XWA's policy of no rules, Declan feels bound to his title's rules and releases the hold, stepping back with his hands up.
Rose: He's really working that shoulder, and in very innovative ways too, Mark.
Mark Sanction: It looks like he's trying to take away the Ode to Rated X and the Wonder No More, two very dangerous attacks in Dan's arsenal. If he can't use his arm, he's bound to a limited moveset.
Rose: And a limited set of moves that is, too. Dan is NOT known for using his feet for much more than the Breakdown, but that alone could be enough should the need arise.
Declan watches as Dan gets back to his hands and knees, rolling his right shoulder in a circle, trying to work the kinks out of it. It's certainly sore, as it's been James's main target this whole match, and Dan is definitely feeling the pain. He pushes off the mat and onto his knees, however that position unfortunately puts him right in place for Declan James to run at him and hit a modified shining wizard, targeting the shoulder with his knee instead of the head! Dan is forced out of the ring from the impact and all things being equal, that seems to be a much safer place for him to be than inside.
Rose: Declan keeping the pressure on. It looks like he's overwheling Dan Bennett here.
Mark Sanction: I kept preaching it, Matt: Don't underestimate this kid. He's a force to be reckoned with in the XWA.
Matt Steel: And he can keep on reckoning with all the minor leaguers here. Once he steps to a future hall-of-famer like Dan, there's no question who's gonna win.
Rose: If I were you, I'd be questioning it about now.
Still not willing to let the current Breakdown user get any rest, Declan gets back up and rushes over to the corner, scaling the ropes to the top, balancing himself on the top turnbuckle pad and the steel post and more importantly, stalking his prey outside the ring. Dan lays on the black mats below for a moment, his whole gameplan against guys like Declan evaporating into the air he's rapidly sucking and wheezing out. Determined to get himself back into this match, he grabs his arm and rubs it, turning his body and getting to one knee, then pushing up and stumbling backwards, regaining his balance. Declan then takes off, Bennett looking up in time to catch a quickly-falling gimmick killer to the chest, the momentum smashing Bennett back into the ground under Declan!
Mark Sanction: Hell of a dive there by James!
Rose: He's taking calculated risks and so far, guys, they've paid off for him. Dan's in a bad way.
Declan is quick to his feet, one arm around his ribs and the other raised as he looks into the crowd, the people split for and against him but still impressed by the moxie he's shown taking it to Bennett like he has. He reaches down and grabs Bennett's bad arm and pulls him up to his knees, lifting the veteran up to his feet. He puts a hand on the back of Dan's neck and grabs the back of his tights and forces Bennett upward and under the bottom rope, rolling him back into the ring. Declan puts a leg up onto the apron and gently slides himself under the bottom rope but as he does, Dan leaps at Declan and grips his hands together tightly, dropping a double axe handle onto Declan's back, knocking him awkwardly back to the mat. With an air of desparation, Dan swings away at Declan, punching through the pain at anything he can reach as James turtles up, avoiding as much damage as he can. Dan's wind leaves him and he slows, backing away of the killer of gimmicks at a three-limbed crawl, finally getting more than ten seconds to catch his breath and recover.
Mark Sanction: And here comes Dan back at Declan!
Rose: He's no quitter, that's for sure.. He'll fight till he's dead or knocked out, and even then I'd be careful.
Dan nurses his shoulder a bit, rubbing it and trying to massage the pain from the body part but it's just not doing the job; Declan's done a real number on it already. Feeling that he must fight through, he tries to forget the aching and gets back to his feet and walks toward Declan. Bennett reaches down and grabs as much of a handful of hair as he can grip from James's shorter hair and pulls him up to his feet, but as soon as Declan reaches a vertical base, he throws a stiff uppercut into Dan's jaw, stunning the bigger man long enough to break the grip on his head. Still energized, the self-proclaimed tough little bastard snags Dan's arm and leaps into the air, pulling the internet sensation of years past down with him. With his descent, Declan raises his knees up and Dan's shoulder is impacted yet again as the knees are driven right into both the scapula and the clavical, drawing a cry of pain from the triple crown champion. With his innovative offensive strategy and seemingly endless battery life, Declan is looking like a worldbeater against the former XWA Champion.
Matt Steel: Aww, come the FUCK on, Dan! What are you DOING?!
Mark Sanction: He's being beaten up, Matt. Declan James is looking nigh-unstoppable and Dan's on the wrong side of it tonight.
Rose: Let's not forget, this tournament is for the right to face the champion whenever, wherever. This isn't just another match, this is as close to life or death as it'll get for these guys tonight.
With the impact, Bennett turns onto his back and holds his shoulder, stomping the mat over and over in animalistic rage. Declan takes a moment to catch his breath, then sees the obvious (to him, at least) next attack and steps toward the nearest corner, quickly ascending the corner with his back to the ring. He gets to the top, steadies himself, then launches backwards while flipping. As he looks in the ring to spot his landing, Dan is no longer there and Declan flexes his body and over-rotates a little, landing hard on his feet and stumbling a little bit. As he gets his bearings from the flight, he is immediately caught off-guard as Dan drills him in the back of the head with a Northern Left-Arm Lariat! James flops to the mat face-first and both hands quickly make their way to his head, if only to make sure it's still attached for the time being.
Rose: Oh my god, did you see that lariat?!
Matt Steel: Sure did! That was fucking brilliant!
Mark Sanction: It's like James got a little cocky and paid the price with his head. That looked scary.
Rose: Trust me, Alex Sean's hit me with that kind of lariat before, that'll hurt in the morning.
After the attack Dan falls to one knee holding his right shoulder yet again, the jolt of the blow while not dealt to him still sending a shockwave through his shoulders. He looks back to Declan and sees the gimmick killer already recovering from the attack, getting to one knee himself, and Bennett shakes his head incredulously, not believing this kid still has that much gas left in his tank. However, much like Declan felt earlier, Dan cannot allow this opportunity to pass and allow James to recover. Dan gets back to a vertical base and he steps toward Declan, grabbing him by the arm and pulling him up to his feet, then swiftly throwing a knee into the shorter man's sternum. Dan tucks Declan's head under his left arm and throws Declan's arm over his, pausing a moment to gather himself.
Matt Steel: Hell yeah, here comes the Emerald Fusion!
Rose: I'd be careful if I were Dan. With how damaged that should is sure to be, I don't know if attempting any sort of suplex is smart right now. He might aggravate a muscle or cause nerve damage.
Mark Sanction: You think he'd risk permanent damage just to win this match?
Matt Steel: Bro, he'd kill a motherfucker to win this match. He wants the belt.
The two men now in imminent suplex position, Dan lowers himself and lifts Declan straight into the air, however not for long as Declan counters the maneuver by falling behind Dan. In an instant, Declan grabs a hold of Dan's shoulder and turns him around. Completely confused, Bennett whips around and before he can even complete his rotation, Declan James is already airborne and grabs Bennett by the head, dropping to the mat with a jumping cutter! Dan slams into the mat with a blunt thud and flips over from the impact, lying on his back spread-eagle, utterly dazed. Declan jumps on top of him for the pin!
Matt Steel: Oh shii-
Mark Sanction: Solid jumping cutter! Could this be it?!
Dan kicks out just before the three count, much to the dismay of Declan James. Still disoriented from the attack, Dan lays there with his eyes wide open, blinking hard and looking very confused. Declan stands up and backs away from Bennett, treading backwards into a corner, then he realizes what he has to do to end this match. He steps between the ropes, then begins to ascend the corner again. He reaches the top and peers across the ring for his victim, but as he does, he sees him sprinting at him and Declan has no time to react as Bennett pushes James's legs out from under him, crotching him on the top rope! Declan gropes at his groin, hoping to relieve the extreme pain shooting up his tenders so severely, even his stomach hurts, and Dan rests on the top rope, gathering himself and shaking out the cobwebs.
Mark Sanction: Dan with the desparation save there! I think Declan was looking for the Grave Driller!
Rose: I'm not so sure he'd have gotten up from that...
Dan finally gets his head together, then grabs the ropes on either side of Declan, climbing up to the second rope and taking a deep breath. Pulling Declan's head down and hooking him under in his armpit again, he throws his left arm over James's head. Dan hunches down and lifts Declan up a little bit but James throws a punch into Dan's face, stopping the momentum. Dan tries again, and again, catches a punch in the face. Once more, and Declan delivers a stiff jab to the jaw of Bennett. Finally releasing the suplex position, Bennett takes another strike to the face and is clearly rocked by the blows, only holding onto the ropes by instinct. Declan takes full advantage of the situation and grabs Dan by the ears and pulls his head down, slamming it off the top turnbuckle and leaving him there, slumped over. Now back on the offensive, James kneels down a bit and hooks a waistlock on Bennett, then jumps over him and pulls him along, slamming him to the mat with a sunset flip powerbomb!
Rose: Dan looks like he's going for the Emerald Fusion-but DECLAN COUNDERS WITH THE SUNSET FLIP POWERBOMB!
Mark Sanction: This match is insane! You never know what's gonna happen next!
Matt Steel: That was a sick powerbomb. Dan better not get pinned by this!
Dan's head and shoulders slam into the mat rather solidly, and Declan stays in powerbomb position, pushing Dan's legs over his head for the pin!
Just before Kirk Samson's hand strikes the mat for three, Dan throws his legs into the air and pushes Declan James off of him, landing on his own chest as Declan catches himself on all fours. Declan and Dan both take a second to rest for a moment, but Declan being the much fresher man takes a second to recheck his privates, then he walks toward Dan's head and grabs him by the right arm, pulling on the bigger man but he's simply taken too much of a beating to get up. Dan, with Declan's help, manages to get to his knees before Declan drops his arm in frustration. Dan sits on his feet with his legs wide, slouched down. He reaches out at Declan and grabs at his legs, trying to help himself up, and James slaps his hand away, giving Dan a look of pure disgust. He steps behind Dan and hooks his head, struggling to lift him for the kill. Dan's body refuses to be lifted, though, and Declan lets go of the hold, frustrated.
Matt Steel: Oh, this ain't good at all...
Mark Sanction: It looks like the only reason Dan's not finished is that Declan can't get him to his feet!
Rose: That may just be enough, though. If Declan can't finish him, what can he do?
Matt Steel: He can lose, that's what Declan can do!
Dan leans forward and puts his hands on the mat, pushing weakly off the mat and dragging one foot underneath his body, and as he does, Declan locks back on with the reverse DDT hold. He pulls Dan to both feet, and as he gets ready to rotate to finish the match with his signature finisher AKA the DWI, Dan throws a punch into Declan's gut, turns around into a traditional DDT hold, then lifts and runs with Declan on his shoulder and slams him into the corner. Dan then runs behind Declan and James, having scouted Bennett's matches over the last few months, knows that the Buckeye Blitz should be coming and he quickturns to where Bennett should be coming from, but that is the biggest mistake Declan has made all night as Bennett was, in fact, waiting for that opening and he leaps at Declan, throwing his boot into the air and catching Declan James cleanly on the chin with a devastating Breakdown 2.0!
Mark Sanction: Declan setting up for the DWI-no wait, there's the lifting slam for the Buckeye Blitz but wait, Declan has it scouted-
Matt Steel: BAM! Ahahahahaha! There's the Breakdown, guys, this shit is OVAHHHHH!
Rose: I dunno about that, Matt. It looks like Dan's having trouble going for the cover.
Declan's head snaps backwards and he falls lifelessly to the mat and Dan, his energy now fully spent, falls down facefirst himself. He raises his head and sees Declan out cold in the middle of the ring, but he can't muster the energy to crawl over and cover James. He uses his left forearm and plants it in the mat, lifting his lifeless body and dragging it about a foot closer to victory. He lifts his left arm again, dragging his body another foot, and another, and another until he's close enough to reach Declan but just barely and he does, reaching out and placing his hand on James's chest and Kirk Samson hits the mat for the pinfall!
Mark, Matt, and Rose: OOOHHHHHHHHH!
Amazing, miraculously, Declan James throws his arm into the air a millisecond before three, stopping the count! Dan is heartbroken and disenchanted by the stopped count, as this may have been his last chance to end this match. Both men lay there, neither one moving except for the heaving breaths both are inhaling and exhaling at a rapid pace. The first of these two warriors to peel themself off of the mat is Dan, pushing his torso up enough to pull his knee underneath him and elevate his body up off the ground. He drags his other knee under his body and sits back on his feet again, staring at Declan's now-stirring body with a seething hatred. How dare this motherfucker kick out of the greatest finisher of all time?!
Matt Steel: Who the fuck is this guy to be kicking out of the Breakdown?
Rose: Dan took far too long to go for the cover. I think if he's have been able to cover him immediately, he may have gotten the three count.
Mark Sanction: And now both men are down again! How much can one man take before he's down for the count?
Declan manages to lift his arm and uses it to turn himself over and, planting both hands into the mat, he walks his feet underneath him and the slowly raises his torso up, finally getting to a wobbly base. At the same time, Dan pushes off the mat and gets to an uneven base himself. These two gladiators look at each other for a moment, then Declan throws a fist into Dan's face, staggering Bennett. Dan steps back over to Declan and throws a fist at Declan, wobbling James's balance with the blow. Declan and Dan stop and stare at each other once more, the moment as tense as it's ever been in the match, and Declan swings wildly once more.
Mark Sanction: Drunk boxing. Neither one of them can have anything left in the tank.
Rose: This match will come down to whomever has the strongest will. Dan and Declan have been battling like gladiators in the pit!
The swing hangs out there forever and Dan ducks the attack, hooking his head underneath Declan's arm from behind and tries to lift him but James throws an elbow into Dan's face and stops the attack. He steps away from Bennett and Dan, almost just reactionary, grabs the back of the gimmick killer's tights and pulls him back. As Declan stumbles back, Dan hooks his head underneath Declan's arm once again, putting his hand between Declan's legs and lifts him, spinning him around and driving James's skull into the mat, connecting for the first time in XWA history with The Sacrifice!
Rose: Oh...oh my god.
Mark Sanction: What in the world was that?! That looked like it killed Declan!
Matt Steel: It probably did! PIN HIM, DAN!
Rose: No, Matt, this could be serious...
Declan falls, nearly dead, to the ground and stays where he lands after the move. Dan rolls him off of him and onto his back, then mercifully Dan covers Declan James for the win! Kirk Samson hits the mat for the count!
The three count now over and Fall Out Boy now playing over the speakers again, Dan pulls himself off of Declan's corpse and Kirk Samson raises his hand, but Dan pulls his hand away quickly and crawls to the ropes, pulling himself back to his feet and leaning against the ropes, looking at Declan still laying on the mat. For all the frustration and the beating Dan had received from Declan and all the trashtalk he'd spewed, Declan had earned a modicum of respect from him.
Hana Ramierez: Here is your winner, and the man moving onto the finals of the Lord of the Ring tournament... DAAAAAAAAAN BEEEEENNNNEEEETTTTTTTT!
Rose: Man... Declan still hasn't moved.
Matt Steel: I know, isn't it GREAT?!
Mark Sanction: This isn't a joke, Matt! He could be seriously injured!
Matt Steel: Hey, Dan won, that's all that mattered!
Dan gives a nod to Declan, then steps between the ropes and, bringing his left arm back up to rub his still-damaged shoulder, he walks away from the ring without looking back as we fade to commercial.
Declan - I loved the match flow, really good commentary and the story is good. THIS IS AWESOME (Holy Shit) completely entertaining, Teddy Colton and Tyros doing their jobs greatly, both saving them from a pin that was going to let their opponent win the match, The Grave Driller move is good. Good job mate.
Dan - Mr. Dan, living legend. Good story, the conversation between Dan and Declan got the match more exciting. The match went pretty good and that last move, a new finisher of Dan?
Vote - Good match by both, but... Declan James has my vote. Actually, this match is pure entertainment. Good that you two guys showed.
DAN, I'M EVIL YAHAHAHAHA. No, really Declan deserves my vote.
Declan -Good post. It flowed well enough and the ending, the teasing kickout just on/after the count of three shows how much of a struggle the match was for your guy against Bennett. It was an action filled match. I will say that maybe a little more detail in parts could work better for you, but on the whole its a solid post.
Dan - Another strong post. You really told the story well, had great pacing and drama to it and the fact you had Declan come out alone and push you to having to use the Omega Driver to end it is a testament to Declan's character and how strong he is becoming.
On the whole, I gotta go with Dan Bennett on this one as winner.
I just felt Dan's story telling and pacing was better and his post just painted a better picture of the match than Declan's did.
A great read from both of you guys
XWA Record (WDL): 8-0-1 Gladiatorial Champion (Won at XWA Massacre: Lords and Gods [30th January show date] - ?????)
Declan- Mr. D, I think your match was alright. I've seen you produce better I don't know something just didn't really click for me. The flow and the pace could use a bit of work as well as stretching out your descriptions. I sometimes feel like all I'm getting is the meat and potatoes of your matches, play with the language a little bit.
Dan- Dan I like your match. I feel like you do a good job of demonstrating Declan in what feels like a very important match in his career. I dug the gentlemen's agreement to actually have rules. Like always your match flows well and the language is expressive. I like the gif of the finisher at the end and most importantly I dig the name. Which is half of the most important thing a professional wrestler needs. (A. An awesome looking finishing move) (B. It has to have a sweet ass name)
You have had Dan begin to switch between finishers for a little while now, but I don't tend to see them after the initial use. You gave Dan a shoulder lock, did he use it in this match and I missed it? If so, and you are going to start reeling the Breakdown back make sure you keep up with this one, I like it.
My Vote- Dan Bennett
It'd be a nice little oddity if one day he somehow won the world title- Diamond Jack Sabbath
You gotta admit, JJJ turning heel out of nowhere would be the rage of rages.- Drake Dysfunction
Canadian wrote:You have had Dan begin to switch between finishers for a little while now, but I don't tend to see them after the initial use. You gave Dan a shoulder lock, did he use it in this match and I missed it? If so, and you are going to start reeling the Breakdown back make sure you keep up with this one, I like it.
Just to get this out there.
Never used a shoulder lock, not sure where that came from lol and after this week, I'm trimming down my finishers to 2. I just didn't feel it would've been fair to Declan if I had changed them in the middle of a card.