LIVE from the Kingdom Coliseum in Allentown, Pennsylvania, USA
Event Summary | Chapter 1
The lights of the Kingdom Coliseum swirled as pyrotechnics lit the stage. In the center of the ring, John Ackerman -- General Manager of IGS -- stood in a tailored blue suit. He had a large smile on his face as he spoke.
"Welcome everyone to the FIVE.. STAR.. SPECTACLE!"
The crowd erupted, they were pumped up and ready to see the action. Ackerman took in their applause then raised a hand in an attempt to quiet them back down.
"Now before we begin, let me reiterate the rules for tonight's tournament. This is a single elimation bracket. All matches must have a definiative decision, whether it be by pinfall.."
"PINFALL" The crowd chanted, they couldn't help themselves.
"Submission.." Ackerman continued but was met by a similar chant, "or decision by referee.."
Ackerman paused for a moment, then repeated himself to appease the crowd.. "Decision by referee."
He didn't give them their satisfaction the second time. "Now, as we have announced, and I'm sure you all know.. this tournament is taking place to crown the first ever IGS Five Star Champion!"
The crowd cheered and Ackerman gave them a grin for it. He motioned towards the back as he continued.
"This tournament will feature a number of top IGS grapplers and it should prove to be an amazing evening of professional wrestling. Now... ENJOY THE SHOW!"
"Welcome, folks at home, to the Five Star Spectacle here at the Kingdom Coliseum. I'm Michael Decker, and tonight's action will be, as always, called by myself and my co-commentator Alan McTaggart."
McTaggart cut Decker off, "And Phaser is gonna win it all! He's my pick, Michael."
Decker responded shortly, "Well, I wouldn't rule anything out on a night like this, Alan. Any one of these eight men could end up the first ever Five Star Champion. Let's go to our ring announcer, and get the show..... on the road."
“The following contest is scheduled for one fall and taking place in the first round of The Five Star Spectacle.”
A bass line began to rumble through the P.A. of the Kingdom Coliseums. The low frequencies built up along the floor and the crowd became restless as the guitars and keyboards of "The Dance of Eternity" by Dream Theatre burst into life. The overhead spotlights circled in time with the song then suddenly came together at the top of the ramp. There stood Sean Warner, dressed in his typical black leather pants and sleeveless black t-shirt. His head drooped downward and both arms spread wide.
"Introducing first, from CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA. He weighs in at two hundred TWENTY-SIX POUNDS..."
Warner began his descent down the ramp with a smile across his face, he even gave a few high fives to those who offered their hands.
Warner slid into the ring and ran up the far turnbuckle. He thrusted his arms to the side once again and dropped his head, letting his blonde hair hang down and brush the turnbuckle. He jumped down with a spin and flipped his hair back once he'd landed. The referee walked over and began checking his pads.
Bass drum and banjos started their sonic assault on the arena.
The only one come from just holdin’ onA bullet is on it’s wayTell the whole world I’m coming homeSomeone’s gonna need a grave
In blue text across the IGS screen “RICHARDS” appeared as the ring announcer started his introduction. Warner shifted in the ring as the announcer started, this tournament was his chance to prove himself.
“HAILING FROM PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA STANDING AT SIX FEET FOUR INCHES TALL AND WEIGHING TWO HUNDRED AND FORTY-FIVE POUNDS!”
A short pause
Yeah,I can never be timid, start to the finishEven through blemishes my heart is replenishedViolent images, with somethin’ in store it’s kinda heavyHold steady I’m ready for war with the P.O.A party time I’m sorry I apologized
It's obvious that you ignore the truth just to acknowledge liesAnd honestly this is a promise not a threatSo you better watch your commas while your conscience is suspectForget the politics the dollars in your wallet justNo one comin' home for everyone I have a problem wit'Don't look astonished 'cause you knew that it was comin'You lookin' at me dumb, I suggest you start runnin'You have that Christian face but I'm chasin' you downLosin' patience you flickin' the cues, breakin' the vowsTomorrow isn't promised and that's even if you live todayWatch what you say or somebody's gonna need a grave
Richards came through the curtain, his face was twisted into a determined glare. He brought his arms up into the air and took a moment to take it all in.
He’s From Philly!
He’s from Philly!
“CAN YOU HEAR THAT REACTION, ALAN!?” Decker shouted as the crowd roared in approval, McTaggert retorted quickly.
“Who gives a crap about what 20,000 people think of a guy who was born an hour away? I’m just here to support my friend Phaser, these two are going to go out there and be all ‘friendship and hugs’ it’s disgusting,” The full rant was on.
“Alan, Richards beat Phaser a few weeks back at IGS 2! Almost broke his neck with that Tiger Suplex of his if I remember correctly,” Decker stated. He knew the game Alan was playing.
“You’re right Decker, and that will be the only time I ever say that line. Richards should be put in prison for attempted murder. He’s trying to end careers out there with that Tiger Suplex!” McTaggart shouted. Clearly unbiased commentary wasn’t going to be happening this evening.
While the commentary team was ranting, Richards had made his way down to the ring, shaking hands and giving high fives the entire way. Once he hopped into the ring, Richards turned to find himself face to face with Warner.
“I think most of us would call that a good hard hitting move Alan, anyway these two are facing off in the first match of our Five Star Championship Tournament. They’ll be setting the tone for this entire evening with this bout; and I think the fans will appreciate the sportsmanship both men bring to the ring,” Decker continued on talking over McTaggart's rambling shouts.
The bell rang and the two men met in the middle of the ring. Richards stuck out his hand for a shake, and Warner was quick to respond. Giving a quick shake and a nod before the two separated back to their corners.
“I told you they’d be all handshakes and hugs,” McTaggart grumbled.
The two began to circle around the ring before finally meeting in the middle again, this time locking up for a collar and elbow tie up instead of a handshake -- let’s be real here for a second, a collar and elbow tie up IS the handshake of wrestling. Warner was the first one to gain some advantage, transitioning the tie up into an arm wrench and a hammer lock.
Richards grimaced, and quickly slid around for a reversal, but Warner saw the reversal coming and was already pivoting, immediately regaining the hammerlock on Richards immediately. The two paused for a minute, Richards grimacing and Warner yanking on the arm. Richards brought his right foot up and managed to slip over top of the Warner’s hand and with a quick thrust, Richards broke the hold.
This time, Richards was pivoting, turning on his left leg and swinging his left forearm into Warner’s jaw with a smash. Warner stumbled backwards, but managed to stay aware as Richards came in for a knee strike. At the last moment Warner dove to the mat and used his legs to trip Richards with a drop toe hold.
Warner quickly transitioned his body position and attempted to grab a hold of Richard’s leg.
“Looks like Sean Warner is looking for an Ankle Lock.” Decker spouted in an attempt to call the action while keeping up with the matches pace, but as the words left his mouth, Richards sensed the danger and rolled sideways, locking his legs around the left leg of Warner in the process.
“Nice reversal by Richards.” Decker continued trying to keep up.
Sean slammed his forearms into the mat and winced as Richards applied pressure with the leg lock. Warner rolled left in an attempt to change the leverage of the hold, but Richards maintained control and wrenched back again.
Warner grimaced and slammed his forearms to the mat once more, dropping his shoulders to the mat for just a moment. The ref was in position and reacted accordingly.
Warner was off the mat immediately. He went to roll the left again, but Richards was ready for it -- he wasn’t, however, ready for the roll to the left that quickly followed. The two men simultaneously turned to their stomachs and the pressure of the hold was released. Both men scrambled apart and got back into their respective corners.
“Quite a display of technique, wouldn’t you say, Alan?” Decker chimed in as he caught up with the action.
“You know, Michael,” Taggart replied, “these two need to stop trying to hit each other, and just hit each other.”
“Well, I should’ve known you wouldn’t be the type to appreciate the art.” Decker shot back with a sigh.
Richards and Warner stretched and shook themselves loose, then they began circling once more. Another collar and elbow, this time the two men took a few steps back and forth as the tried to gain some advantage. After a few moments, Richards slipped around Warner’s left side, wrapping his arm stiffly around Warner’s head. Warner shoved forward and Richards flew to the ropes. As he came back Warner dropped to the mat and Richards hopped over. The two men crossed in the middle once more, this time Warner hopped over Richards. Richards came off the ropes again and Warner gave him an armdrag. Richards bounced off the mat with a thud as he landed.
“Textbook Armdrag from Warner,” called out Decker.
Warner headed to pick up Richards but caught an elbow to the midsection for his trouble. Richards gave him another followed by a third. Richards got back to his feet and fired a forearm to Warner’s head. Warner reeled but returned with a forearm of his own. Richards staggered back but quickly regained awareness and laid another forearm into Warner.
Warner shot one back with his own forearm once more..
Richards came back with right forearm followed up by a second..
Richards wound up for the third..
But Warner blocked and countered with a stiff kick to the gut, followed up side headlock. right forearmlefRichards winced as Warner torqued his neck. Richards lifted Warner up…
“Backdrop Suplex… oh my Warner held on!” Decker exclaimed.
Warner rolled to his side and kept the pressure on Richards head. The referee check for the Choke and found everything to be in order. Richards tried to get a foot underneath himself, but Warner wrenched back again and Richards flopped back to the mat.
LET'S GO RICHARDSClap Clap - Clap Clap Clap
Richards felt his energy renewing as he listened to his hometown crowd; he managed to get his foot planted and pivoted to a knee. Warner wrenched again but Richards got his other foot underneath himself and pushed back up to a vertical base. Richards wrapped his arms around Warner lifted him high into the air once more.
“Another Backdrop Suplex from Richards.” Decker began, but his tone quickly changed, “Warner holding on a second time I don't believe it!”
Warner sat up once more and Richards rolled to his stomach. Warner kept applying pressure with the headlock. Richards slammed his hands down on the mat in frustration but quickly acquired his composure.
Once more, Richards battled to his feet, but Warner didn't wait for the suplex this time, running forward for a Bulldog.
“Bulldog Facebuster coming up...no,” Decker cut himself off mid sentence.
Richards, anticipating the move, managed to shove away from Warner. Warner landed hard on the mat. Richards noticed an opportunity and went to drop a knee, but Warner was gone when he landed.
Warner rolled to his side as Richards rolled through the knee drop. Warner quickly rolled back around and hooked his feet under Richards’ arms . Warner then rolled forward and pulled Richards backward into a modified roll up, the ref was there.
Richards kicked his feet high into the and flipped out of the pinning maneuver. Warner scrambled to his feet but Richards was already in the air with a standing drop kick which sent Warner hurtling backward into the corner.
“Well you're not gonna beat Richards that way, right Alan?”
Decker posed the question, and Alan replied. “From what we've seen so far I doubt either one is gonna best the other. But hey, at least they're picking up the pace.”
“The matchup thus far is indeed a tightrope of advantages, Alan, and in my opinion the momentum has been absolutely paradisiacal.” Decker said attempting to get the last word.
“Para-Dee-See What!?” Alan got the last word anyways.
Warner slumped in the corner after the Dropkick. Richards ran in for a lariat, but Warner ducked out of the way, rolling Richards into a school boy as he bounced off the turnbuckle. The referee was out of position this time around and had to slide in for the count..
Richards again kicked out at one. Now Warner was pounding on the mat in frustration. Warner was the first to his feet but Richards wasn't far behind. They surveyed each other once more and circled the ring once again. Another Collar and Elbow tie up in the center of the ring led to Richards gaining advantage with an Arm Wrench. He jumped up and landed loudly on the canvas yanking Warner’s arm down hard. Warner winced in pain. Richards twisted the arm another turn and stepped behind Warner, applying the Hammerlock once again.
Warner winced and grabbed at his shoulder; he went to duck behind, but Richards maintained control with a step to the left. Sean tried reaching through his legs to grab Richards, but the philly native saw that coming as well and stepped back to counter. Warner felt the leverage change and took advantage of the shift in Richards’ balance; Sean reached back, grabbed a hold of Richards’ head, and pulled him over to the mat. The moment Chris Richards’ shoulders touched the mat he kicked his legs up and locked Warner in a leg scissors.
“Beautiful counter by Richards!” Decker shouted. “Warner is gonna have trouble here, Richards has a lot of power in the legs stemming from his time as an All American Linebacker.
Warner tried to nip up and out of the hold but failed. He kicked his legs but Richards hold was firm. Warner then tried to bridge, but that was, again, no use. Richards applied more pressure and the referee checked around Warner for a choke -- the hold was deemed legal.
“Warner struggling to get out of this one, Alan,” Decker stated trying to involve his colleague in the match.
“Yeeeeup.” Alan yawned. “I see it.”
“Come on, Alan, show some respect here. There are two men putting on a display of skill and prowess in the ring right now!” Decker shouted, becoming perturbed.
“What happened to the forearms and dropkicks.” Alan let out with a sigh and leaned on his left hand.
Warner bridged again and using his legs to maneuver his body, this time managed to escape. The two men nipped up to their feet and stared each other down, each man gave the other a nod and circled around the ring once more. The crowd went wild.
“You see Alan, this crowd knows real talent when they see it, ha ha!” Decker bellowed above the crowd noise with a smile.
Warner and Richards continued to circle, each made attempts at grabbing a wrist or a leg. Neither men were successful. They toyed with locking hands, but neither managed to get a grip they were happy with. Suddenly, Richards made a move to his left that Warner wasn't expecting. He ducked behind Warner and grabbed a Waist Lock; With a big display of strength, Richards then hoisted Warner into the air, rotated, and slammed his face down to the mat.
“Now there’s some impact!” Alan jumped up with a start.
“What a takedown!” Decker chimed in as Richards floated over and locked in a Front-Facelock on Warner.
Warner drove his legs into the mat and manage to stand, but Richards maintained control. Warner tried backing Richards to a corner, but the young up-and-comer held his ground. Warner attempted to lift Richards up..
“Could be going for a Northern Lights Suplex here!” Decker called out.
Richards squeezed the hold a little harder and dropped back to his feet as Warner winced and lost his breath. Richards squeezed again and a little more pressure was applied. Warner dropped to one knee. Richards looked to the crowd and received their approval. Warner heard the response and found some new life; he forced his foot back underneath himself. Warner suddenly grabbed Richards arm and swung. Both men hit the mat.
“SWINGING NECKBREAKER, and a beautiful one if I might add.” Decker bellowed.
“Nice impact, too. Both men are down.” Alan added.
The referee counted.
Both men stirred, Warner moving only slightly faster.
Warner made it to a knee as Richards rolled to a seated position.
Richards rolled to a knee and both men were face to face.
They stood and the referee waved off the count.
“The bar is being set by these two men,” said Decker, “and I wouldn’t call its height low!”
Richards rubbed his neck as they circled once more. Warner tried to shake out the cobwebs supplied by the Front-Facelock. They circled, they locked up one more time. This time Richards quickly took control. The crowd was behind him as he grabbed a side headlock. He wrenched on Warner’s neck, but Warner shoved him into the ropes. Richards came back and hopped over Warner, who dropped to the mat. This time Richards sped his pace as he came back and hit Warner with a lariat as the North Carolina native popped back to his feet.
“Big lariat from Richards and Warner gets turned inside out!” Decker called as Warner went head over heels backward and landed flat on the mat.
Richards jumped up and down in a circle while surveying to the crowd, his arms in the air. They ate it up. Richards went to Warner and lifted him to his feet. He locked Warner’s head in the crook of his arm and Warner’s arm around his own head. Richards then lifted Warner in the air and fell backwards.
“Alan, would you look at that Vertical Suplex, pic… ture… perfect,” called Decker.
“Eh… I’ve seen better ones.” Alan quickly retorted.
Richards quickly stood -- he was on fire now. He bent down and lifted Warner up once more. With a waist lock applied he lifted Warner up and over for a German Suplex.. but Warner slipped free mid air and landed on his feet. Warner was quick to follow up with an elbow to the forehead; but Richards rolled out of the way. Richards climbed to his feet but Warner was there.
“Nice Jawbreaker from Warner, but Richards looks to be maintaining an upright position.” Decker called out.
Richards held his jaw for a moment waiting for Warner to get up before delivering a Dropkick once again. Warner reeled this time landing hard on the canvas. Richards grabbed for an ankle but Warner kicked him off. Richards went in again but he was kicked off by Warner once more, this time Richards flew backward landing on the mat.
Warner rolled to a knee and used the ropes to help himself to his feet, Richards was still down.
“Richards head bounced off the canvas fairly hard there Alan, he may be out.”
Warner took to the turnbuckles, hoisting himself to the middle of the ropes. He measured Richards, and leapt for a knee drop.
“I think he may have suckered him in a little there, Michael,” Alan piped in on the mic as Richards rolled out of the way just in time.
“I don't know about that, Alan, Richards isn't one to use tricks in the ring. He probably just regained his senses and reacted.”
Warner clutched at his knee as Richards got to his feet. Richards lifted him into a Waist Lock one more time and hoisted him up for another German Suplex; this time Richards hit the move and held for a bridge as the referee dropped down into position.
The crowd yelled out as Warner managed to kick out. Richards was stunned, he thought he may have had him. Warner tried to sit up but Richards forced him back down and leapt into the air. Warners body lifted off the mat with the impact as Richards dropped a knee across Sean’s forehead.
“Good lord, what a knee!” Decker said, calling the action. “A cover once again!” Decker shouted as the crowd cut him off counting along with the ref’s hand hitting the mat.
Warner somehow got the shoulder up again and Richards appeared stunned. He looked down a Warner knowing what he needed to do to end this fight and advance to the next round. He rolled Warner over and the crowd reacted, they could feel what was coming up.
Richards hooked Warner’s arms in a double underhook. Richards let out a grunt as hit lift Warner into the air over his head.
“Oh No! This move should be illegal Michael!” Alan yelled, he was invested now.
Warner was somewhat out of it from the knee drop but his instincts were still intact. He shifted his weight up and over Richards, maneuvering out of the double under hook in the process and landing feet first on the mat before collapsing.
Alan shouted in amazement, “How in the Hell did he do that?!”
“I'll chalk it up to experience, Alan.” Decker attempted to explain, “I understand Warner had some in ring success in the early 2000s.”
“Damndest thing I've ever seen,” Alan said, his mouth still hanging open in shock.
“Watch that language Alan, we’re live here.”
Warner grabbed a hold of Richards right wrist and pulled him to his feet. Warner yanked on Richards arm, pulling him in for a Short-Arm Lariat, laying Richards right back down the mat as Warner dropped to a knee. Warner scrambled for the cover.
Richards kicked out and Warner gritted his teeth as he got up. He lifted Richards back to his feet and hurled him to the ropes. Richards hooked the ropes and Warner hit the mat hard from an attempted drop kick. Richards took bent down and surveyed Warner, waiting for him to stand. Richards was full of energy now, he was shaking and the crowd was ready for what was coming up.
The crowd yelled as Richards connected with a hard knee lift just as Warner got to his knees. He stood and motioned for the crowd to get ready.
Richards turned and once again hooked Warners arms. Richards lifted Warner from the mat once more, but Warner wasn’t giving up his championship opportunity just yet. The moment the two were vertical, Warner swung his legs out, then swung them back in, kicking Richards in the chest and simultaneously throwing himself through the ropes and tumbling down to the floor. The crowd was in awe as the ref began the count.
“What a counter to the Tiger Suplex, I’ve never seen anything like that.” Decker shouted in shock.
“He’s going to pay for it in the morning, too,” added McTaggart.
Richards got to his feet and tried to find Warner, but he was nowhere to be found.
Warner stirred on the outside. Pulling himself up with some help from the ring apron.
Richards reacted at the sight of Warner’s hand appearing over the apron, backing himself into the ropes.
Warner got to his feet just in time to see Richards’ body flying through the ring ropes before both men flew backward into the barricade.
The crowd erupted.
“Good Lord, what a trainwreck!” Decker exclaimed.
“Now we’re getting to the good stuff!” McTaggart added with an even higher level of excitement.
The ref reset the count as both men were now outside the bounds of the squared circle..
Both men lay still.
Richards moved an arm, Warner twitched a leg.
Richards tried to sit up, and clutched at his stomach. Warner rolled to his side and grabbed his back.
Richards managed to climb to a knee. Warner began to crawl to the apron.
Richards made it to his feet. Warner climbed the apron and got his feet underneath himself.
Richards rolled into the ring, and rolled back out. Which restarted the referee's count once again.
The crowd counted along as the Richards grabbed Warner by the head.
Richards gave Warner a forearm to the left side of the head. Warner reeled back, stumbling around the ring post. Richards, still slightly staggered, followed.
Richards caught up with Warner and spun him around for another big forearm which sent Warner backward into the barricade.
“The action continuing out on the floor in front of us here at The Five Star Spectacle!” Decker said calling the action, “What an opener this is turning out to be!”
Richards picked up Warner and tried to whip him into the side of the ring, but Warner managed to reverse it and fell to a knee as Richards slammed into the apron.
Warner pulled himself together and got to his feet. Warner tried to tackle Richards into the ring, but this time it was Richards falling to a knee, which sent Warner head first under the bottom rope and back into the squared circle. The referee looked almost confused as he restarted the count.
Richards began to regain his footing as Warner got back to his feet in the ring.
Richards stood holding his back as Warner backed himself into the ropes.
Richards turned to the ring and met Warners left foot head on, Richards then found himself in a heap against the barricade.
“Baseball slide and the timing couldn’t have been better!” Decker shouted in excitement.
Warner stood back up in the ring and backed up to the ropes again as Richards tried to pull himself up on the barricade.
Warner took off, but the referee stepped in the way to stop him. “Let’s get this back in the ring,” the ref told Warner. Richards managed to get to his feet and crawled under the bottom rope.
“Both men, finally reentering the squared circle, let's see if we can’t have a decision here!” Decker commented as the referee checked Richards. Richards waved off the referee and insisted on standing; he did so with some assistance from the turnbuckles.
The referee moved Warner into a neutral corner as Richards composed himself. Richards shook his head that he was ready to continue and the referee moved to the center of the ring and gave the two men the go ahead.
Warner and Richards didn’t waste any time. They came out of their respective corners red hot; as they met in the center of the ring Warner gave Richards a left.
Richards returned with a right forearm.
Warner was staggered but threw a right forearm back.
That sent Richards backward, but it didn’t stop a follow up strike.
Warner stumbled forward which allowed Richards a second strike in a row, this time it was a forearm shot.
Warner dropped to a knee and Richards promptly placed his left knee into the side of Warner’s head sending Sean down to all fours.
The crowd ate it up as the two men battled it out. Richards bent to lift up Warner but caught him with an uppercut which sent Richards stumbling backward. The crowd was whipping themselves into a frenzied chant.
LET’S GO RICHARDSCLAP CLAP CLAP
Warner got back to his feet and caught up with Richards tying him up against the ropes. The ref moved to issue a five count, but Warner stepped backward, yanked Richards forward and across the ring into the ropes. As Richards came back Warner bent forward and snapped back up sending Richards up and over high into the air.
“BIG BACK BODY DROP!” Decker shouted with glee.
“These guys are leaving it all in the ring, I’ll give them that.” Alan spat out.
Richards lay on the mat arching up in pain as Warner turned to follow up. He looked at the crowd and pointed towards the corner. Some cheered for Warner while many continued their chants in support of Richards.
Sean Warner paid no mind to the fans that supported his opponent. But he listened to those in support of him as he climbed to the top. Richards on the other hand did pay attention to the chants. He rolled to his stomach and gathered some renewed strength. Warner reached the top and turned to see Richards’ movement; he changed game plans standing up on the turnbuckle.
Richards climbed to his feet as Decker did what he did best, “Look at this, some high flying action coming up!”
Richards looked for Warner. He stumbled to his left; nothing there. He stumbled to his right; nothing there. He knew he might regret this but he stumbled around 180 degrees. Warner made his move and leapt into the air, turning himself sideways as he flew.
“Cross-Body From The Top!!” Decker was there with the call.
As the two men hit the mat, Richards knew what to do. He kicked his legs into the air and used the momentum. The two men tumbled over Richards ending up on top with a cover, he hooked the leg of Warner and leaned his 245 pound frame into Warners shoulders as the referee counted.
Warner gave Richards a shove as his shoulders left the canvas and Decker cried out, “Look at that spirited kick out by Sean Warner!”
Richards lifted Warner to knee, then to his feet hurling him into the ropes. Richards set up to deliver a knee lift as Warner returned but Warner was ready rolling underneath and around behind Richards. Warner quickly got to his feet and spun Richards round to delivery a kick to the stomach but Richards caught the ankle.
“Enziguri from Warner and Richards both men are down! How are you liking the pace now, Alan? Ha Ha”
“Oh we’re seeing some decent stuff now, Michael, but I still don’t see any real impact!”
“You’ve lost your mind McTaggart,” Decker couldn’t believe his co-commentator’s remark.
Warner climbed to his feet as Richards got back to a knee. Warner wrapped Richards in a Front-Facelock and grabbed a handful of tights. He lifted Richards up and looked to the crowd.
“I think he’s looking for that High Altitude DDT here!” Rang out Decker, “This could be all over!”
Warner made a move to lift Richards up, but Richards managed to sprawl his legs and keep the center of gravity low. Warner lifted again to no avail. A third attempt but Richards had regained his awareness to bring a knee up and into Warner’s side.
Warner released Richards and backed away. He looked to be out of breath as Decker called the action, “Nice knee to the right oblique of Warner, Richards isn’t finished yet!”
Richards and Warner locked up again, this time Richards was shot off into the ropes. Warner looked for another Lariat but Richards ducked it. Richard came back again and Warner went for the Lariat once more, but Richards was regaining his speed and slid himself underneath the arm of Warner once more. This time Richards hopped back up and snatched Warner from behind.
Warner threw a right elbow into the side of Richards head, followed up by a second. He spun around behind Richards and hoisted him overhead.
“BIG GERMAN SUPLEX IS IT GOING TO BE OVER.. NOOOOOOOOOO, Richards lands on his feet.” Decker was eating it up alongside the crowd.
Richards was on Warner immediately after flipping out of the German, he rushed Warner from behind and hoisted Sean high in the air…
“RICHARDS NOW WITH THE GERMAN AND THAT’S GOTTA BE IT HE BROKE HIM IN HALF!”
“WHAT’S HE DOING MICHAEL!?” McTaggart called out as Richards rolled through the German and pulled himself and Warner back up from the canvas. “NOT THIS AGAIN!”
Richards hooked the arms and the crowd roared their approval. This is what they were waiting to see. Up went Warner and he came back down with a hard THWACK shaking the ring. Richards bridged and the ref was there.
You Know How It Goes…
Bass drum and banjos began to refill the air inside the Kingdom Coliseum as Richards stood. The crowd cheered on as the Peter Greenberg entered the ring.
“Your Winner… VIA PINFALL…..”
The referee raised Richards arm to the sky as Warner began to stir and roll onto his side. As Richards heading back up the ramp he gave a few high fives and the cameras returned their focus to the commentary desk.
"Folks, no words I can say could truly express the state of awe I have entered after that masterful display from both Chris Richards and Sean Warner. They brought everything they had and left in the center of the ring.."
"Meh.. I'd give it two stars.. Phaser vs Kendrick Matters ought to be better I think!" McTaggart said cutting Decker off mid sentence.
"Ever the impartial judge is Alan McTaggart, don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise," Decker spit out.
"You know it, Michael!"
"Anyways, I've just received word that, even though he isn't involved in tonight's tournament, Kellen Wolff has decided to make his presence felt here tonight, let's go to Amelia Mazzi...."
As the scene transition to the backstage area, Amelia Mazzi could be see standing next to the massive man known as The Kraken. He was dressed in jeans and a sleeveless shirt which was desperately trying to hang on with every movement of his upper body.
"Hello everyone! I'm here with Kellen Wolff, a mere spectator tonight at the Five Star Spectacle.."
"Kracken!" Kellen cut her off.
Amelia looked flustered and nervous for a moment.. "Uh yes, The Kraken himself has come to the Five Star tonight here at the Kingdom Coliseum. Tell me, Kellen.."
"KRACKEN!" Kellen cut her off once more and snatched the microphone from her hand.
"I come to IGS for opportunity, yet I remain a mere jerk of curtain. I reign undefeated, both here and around world! Tonight I issue challenge to one man, one man who think himself special. He thinks he is the greatest!" Kellen spread his arms wide, "but he is just another rung on ladder to the top."
"Tell me...uh.. Kracken.." Amelia said into a second microphone a production assistant had handed her. "About whom are you speak?"
"I speak of the man called Mammoth. He think he have strength.. he think he have power.. but all he have is long legs, good for running away. They say he stand near seven feet. They announce him at 300 pound. Well that makes him weak and small compared to The Kraken. I mays be only six feet three, but I tip scale at nearly 300 pound....."
As Kellen raved he was suddenly bumped into by an exhausted Sean Warner as he trudged back through the curtain after his elimination.
"What THE F---" Kellen's eyes blazed and Warner's eyes went wide.
"Oh uh, sorry Kellen, I didn't know there was an interview going on back here...."
Kellen snatched Warner up like a small child and threw him against the cinder block wall, leaving him lying in a heap.
"Malik Roland... consider your self noticed... by supremacy."
Kellen stormed off and Amelia Mazzi gathered her nerves for her sign off, "Well... uhm... well, there you have it. A challenge laid down to the IGS Champion from, "here eyes dart towards the direction that Kellen had gone, "'The Kracken' Kellen Wolff. Let's get back to ringside for the next first round matchup, Phaser versus Kendrick Matters!"
The voice of Peter Greenberg over the PA.
“Ladies and Gentlemen. This match is scheduled for one fall and is a first round match for the Five Star Championship.”
“Entering first, from Eagle, Colorado, and weighing in at 215 pounds… PHASER!”
The Red Eagle strode purposefully down the ramp, ignoring the fans, ignoring the cameras, his sole focus trained on the ring.
“Phaser coming off a loss at IGS 2 to Chris Richards.” Decker pointed out.
“Yeah,” McTaggart grinned, “he’s got a score to settle against the City of Philadelphia. And he’s gonna get his chance tonight!”
Phaser showed no sign of distress, paying half-hearted attention to the referee’s pre-match instructions.
“And his opponent, sponsored by the Buddy Showtime Conservatory of Violent Arts in Scenic Downtown Allentown, PA, where tomorrow’s champions become today’s superstars, weighing in at 192 pounds. From Philadelphia, PA”
The crowd gave a cheer and a chant of :
“HE’S FROM PHILLY!”
clap clap clap-clap clap
And Kendrick Matters sprinted to the ring like a greyhound.
“Kendrick Matters is keyed up tonight, look at that energy.” Decker commented.
“He’s gonna exhaust himself if he doesn’t pace himself,” McTaggart sighed. “If Buddy were out here, he’d have reined him in already.” McTaggart shook his head.
“Speaking of Mr. Showtime, where is he? You’d think he’d at least join us in the booth. Lord knows, we haven’t been able to keep him away before.” Decker shot back.
“Ah, I spoke to Buddy before the match. He said he wanted to see whether the kid was able to take care of himself on his own. But don’t worry, he’s gonna be watching this match closely.”
Phaser stood across the ring cracking his neck and looking entirely unimpressed as Kendrick showboated for the fans, clearly as enthused by them as they were by him.
The bell rang, and neither man moved to attack.
“Phaser’s gotta feel strange here, he can’t be used to being the grizzled veteran here.”
“Let alone the bigger man, the taller man, the man more capable of reigning his emotions in…” McTaggart ticked off the items.
“You’ve got the future of the IGS standing in this ring, two of the biggest up-and-comers in the league.” Decker enthused.
“Yeah, one of ‘em looks like a kid in a candy store, the other one thinks he’s too cool for school,” McTaggart shot back.
“Let’s go you two!” the referee cautioned.
“The fans are clearly ready to see these two young bulls to clash their horns,” Decker added.
Phaser took a deep breath and started to circle the opposite way than the referee. Matters did the same keeping the ring between the him Phaser.
You could hear the fans become involved as they saw movement in the ring. “You know what…” Phaser shouted as he stopped circling the ring, “Let's see what you got Mr. Matters!”
Phaser walked to the center of the ring. Kendrick met him in the middle and showed how short he was giving up a full half a foot to Phaser.
Phaser smirked as he lifted his hand in the air signalling for a test of strength. His hand, however, was a good foot and a half above Kendrick’s head, and thus just out of his reach. Kendrick shook his head and slipped away faster than the eye can track..
“Kendrick Matters about to demonstrate the quickness and explosive force that earned him the name, ‘Dynamite’.” said Decker.
Kendrick jumped up to the middle rope and springboard backwards going for the Jawn ‘76 but was caught in midair by The Red Eagle. “That’s not how it is going down tonight, little guy!” Phaser said as he threw Dynamite Kendrick Matters in the air but was greeted by two feet to the chest that knocked him to his back.
“And like dynamite, when he gets done exploding there’s gonna be nothing left of him.” McTaggart shot back.
Matters got back to his feet and stood over Phaser and slowly lifted his own hand in the air mocking him over the earlier test of strength.
The Red Eagle got to his feet in a hurry to not be embarrassed any longer and DMK back pedalled to not get a retaliation strike.
Phaser’s eyebrows were lowered, barrel chest moving up and down, and fist clinched - The Red Eagle was pissed at the disrespect that was shown for him. “DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM!” Phaser hollered as he loomed over Kendrick Matters. “I AM THE RED FUUUC-” The Red Eagle was caught off guard by Dynamite’s dropkick to the knee, which sent him sprawling. “Come on!” Phaser slammed his fist against the mat as he helped himself back up but couldn’t get all the way up before Kendrick swung his leg up and stepped over Phaser.
“That’s showing absolutely no respect, whatsoever.” Decker was livid.
“Hey, it worked for Allen Iverson,“ McTaggart conceded.
“Just because it’s OK in basketball doesn’t mean it’s proper sportsmanship,” Decker groused.
Phaser heard the reaction from the fans and his face congealed into a mask of hatred. Kendrick waved his hands in the air as he felt the welcoming from the fans cheering him on. As he turned around he was greeted with a vicious clothesline that turned him inside out.
“And that’s what you get for showboating without having the hops to prove it,” McTaggart gleefully clarified.
Phaser slowly stood up with a grin from ear to ear. Smelling blood in the water Phaser picked up Kendrick up just to put him back down with a very quick body slam. Some of the attendance started to turn on The Red Eagle. Chanting for Kendrick to come back. KEN-DRICKKEN-DRICKKEN-DRICK
Phaser blankly peered out into the smoky arena showing almost zero emotion towards them which made the chants louder. The Red Eagle pulled Dynamite back to his feet and threw him to the nearest turnbuckle. BAM! Phaser was welcomed with a foot to the face as he approached the turnbuckle.
“Matters is showing some scrappiness tonight,” Decker commented.
“But how long is that gonna last,” asked McTaggart, just as Phaser cut Kendrick’s rally short by thrusting his knee into Matters’ gut. Phaser backed up to telegraph where he wanted to land his kicks. One. Chest.
Three. Back to the chest.
The strikes echoed throughout the arena. Phaser held Kendricks up for a moment before he backed up and quickly landed Set Kicks to Stun. Matter’s knees buckled. Phaser pulled Dynamite’s body to the middle of the ring.
“He’s going for the pin,” Decker shouted, “is it all over?” One.
“What?” Phaser yelled as he looked at the referee. “That was three!” The fans again reminded Phaser it was a two count by chanting “TWO!” again.
Kendrick was regaining his balance with the help of the ropes trying to stand up. Phaser sent him into the opposing ropes. And somehow ducked under a lighting quick superkick from Phaser.
“What the hell, does that Matters kid have a Spider-Sense!” sputtered McTaggart.
“Nope,” Decker smugly replied, “just good, solid ring-sense. Look!”
Kendrick showed his own quickness by taking to the air with a springboard moonsault!
However! Phaser showed the size advantage by catching him on his shoulder in mid-air. “IT’S OVER!” The Red Eagle exclaimed as he tossed DKM in the air and side stepped.
“That shows you what common sense’ll get you when you’re in the ring with the Eagle,” McTaggart crowed.
Kendrick lands on his feet and looks a bit confused but then realizes what that allowed Phaser to do. BOOM! Superkick right to the chin! Followed up by a neckbreaker. Phased & Diffused!
“And there’s the count,” Decker interjected ”is Phaser gonna do it?”
“How’s he getting out,” McTaggart groaned, “he should be out cold!”
Kendrick made a last millisecond move of his shoulder to save this match from ending. Phaser pleaded that it was three to the referee but referee was not budging off his call of a two count.
“Phaser looks incensed,” Decker pointed out.
“If by incensed, you mean ready to strangle someone, I have to agree,” McTaggart chimed in.
The Red Eagle stood up slowly and took a huge breath to calm his nerves and loosened up his right arm to hint towards The Phase Out his version of a jumping stunner.
“With the number of times Phaser’s kicked him in the chin, Matters’ brain should be mush by now,”
“You said it yourself, Alan, at this point in the match it’s not a matter of brains but intestinal fortitude.”
“I have never said the words intestinal fortitude in my life, you filthy liar.”
As Kendrick Matters reached his feet The Red Eagle took flight giving his back to Dynamite. Within a flash The Red Eagles’ skull slammed into the ground with a lighting quick snap german suplex from DKM. ONE!!!
Phaser kicked out of the textbook bridge. Kendrick Matters rolled to his side and held his jaw. Phaser was on his knees holding his skull.
“Matters has a busted jaw, Phaser’s got cobwebs to shake out, which one’s gonna recover first?” Decker asked earnestly.
“Hate to say it, but Matters might be able to shift the momentum. If he’s got the brains left to capitalize on it.” McTaggart responded.
Both of these men reached their feet and looked across the ring to look at the other. They both charged towards each other Phaser threw a clothesline but was ducked. Seeing the chance Dynamite went for the Kendrick MATTERS - a corkscrew roundhouse kick. Phaser caught Kendrick’s foot and threw the foot upwards but the agile DKM front flipped and stuck the landing doing a picture perfect front flip. “SUPERKICK FOR THE KILL!” McTaggart was on his feet! No. Kendrick caught his heel. Throwing Phaser’s foot down Kendrick snapped into the air wrapping his legs around the head of Phaser spiking him against the squared circle with a reverse hurricanrana.
The crowd went wild to chants..
"HO-LY SHIT!""HO-LY SHIT!""HO-LY SHIT!"
Kendrick clearly out of breath threw his body over Phaser to pin him.
THR... NO! Phaser had his foot on the rope! Kendrick just stared at the foot on the rope for what seemed to be an eternity. “LET'S DO THISI!” Matters yelled as he sprung to his feet and dragged The Red Eagle to the turnbuckle. “The crowds going wild, he did this move at IGS 2!”
“But this time he’s going against a legitimate superstar, apologies to Mr. Showtime, but this is a very different animal,” McTaggart cautioned Kendrick squared himself to the turnbuckle with his hands on each rope. “Yeah… It's my time.” He said to himself with a smile on his face. Springboarding himself twice and twisting himself into a phoenix splash - DMKS!
“The crowd is going absolutely nuts as he soars through the air like an eagle!” Decker
“Wait! Look! Oh my god!” McTaggart went wilder than the fans! “Phaser got his knees up!”
Kendrick landed on Phaser’s upraised knees, knocking the breath out of himself, and giving the Red Eagle the chance to roll his opponent into a small package. ONE!!!!
THREE!!!!! NO!!!! Dynamite somehow kicked out.
“How? Where? What energy is Dynamite using to still fight through this?” Decker was flabbergasted.
“Search me, Deck, I’d have thought he’d have broken five minutes ago,” McTaggart agreed. Phaser reached his feet and “GET UP KENDRICK! GET UP!” Kendrick was laying on the ground holding his chest. “C’MON! GET UP! LETS FINISH THIS!” Phaser yelled at him again.
“Well he may very well be now,” Decker’s enthusiasm deflated.
Kendrick was not moving. Referee went to go check on him.
“Phaser interrupting the referee,” Decker continued, “he’s trying to pick him up. But why?”
“Because this is his first victory in IGS, he needs a clean win. He’s not gonna let some striped-shirt put an asterisk next to his moment!”
As Phaser bent over to grab Kendrick he was wrapped up in a small package of Dynamite’s!
“My god, Mac, DKM was playing possum!” Decker could not believe it.
“How the hell did a rookie like him pull off this sort of move! That’s the sort of thing I would pull!”
ONE!!! TWO!!! Kickout. Both men sprung to their feet - THE PHASE OUT!
THREE! Phaser did it. He is moving on into the second round of the tourney!
Amelia Mazzi stood in front of a 'Five Star Spectacle' backdrop with a microphone in her hand.
"In just a few moments, Max Hopper will enter the ring in his journey to win the 5-Star Championship. But right now, I'm joined by his opponent, who also enters his journey, Kayden Paulton."
Paulton walks into the picture to light cheers from the crowd. He smiles at Amelia and then leans forward.
"Hi Amelia, thank you for interviewing me."
Amelia blushes a little, as she's caught off-guard, "Oh... no problem."
Kayden stands at 6'2", 220 pounds. He looks overly-muscular for a high flying athlete and yet, not muscular enough to pose as a real powerful wrestler. Paulton is wearing a light blue 80's looking retro t-shirt and is in his wrestling gear.
"Anyway, Kayden, your thoughts on tonight's match against Max Hopper."
"Yeah," Paulton starts in a friendly tone, "Nothing but good things to say about Max. He's a legend in his own right. He should be a heavy favorite against myself."
Mazzi nods and then smiles back at Kayden, trying to hide what looks like a small crush on him. "Kayden, do you have a game-plan coming into this match?"
"Good question, Amelia. I'm just going to throw everything at Max. I don't nearly have the experience he does in the ring, but I've got some surprises out there and I will give him everything I have. Make no mistake, it's going to be tough. But we are going to put on a show for everyone."
The crowd cheered at the thought of this.
"This is just your second match in IGS and the third show overall, Kayden," Mazzi continued, "So this is a great opportunity to stand out..."
Paulton nodded. "Oh, take nothing away from anyone else, though. There's tons of talent in this organization and a lot in this tournament. It's going to be difficult. It's going to be a struggle. But I'm ready to entertain and I'm ready to put my body on the line."
Mazzi nodded. Paulton looked to walk off before a thought came to his mind.
"I know in today's world, a guy like me would typically get booed," Paulton mentioned, "the do-gooding wrestler who doesn't have or want enemies... but I really appreciate all of you getting behind me. Each and every one of you pay good money to be here. Therefore, I can promise you one thing... Max and I are going to tear the house down tonight."
The crowd popped again as Kayden smiled at Amelia before walking off.
"Thanks again, Amelia."
She blushed. "No problem, Kayden. Anytime."
"The following contest, is the third of four first round match ups... and is set... for ONE FALL!"
“Walking on Sunshine” hit the PA and Kayden Paulton came out to cheers. He wore his regular “retro-like” dark purple and pink tights and sported a polite smile on his face. Paulton took the time to make sure many kids in the front row got a high five as he walked down the left side of the ramp. He also went back and high fived a few hands he missed along the way.
Paulton turned to the right side of the ramp and shouted, "I'll get you on the way back." He was very concerned with making sure the fans on the other side knew they would get to meet a wrestler as well and would not be disappointed they sat on the ‘wrong side’ of the rampway.
Paulton jumped onto the apron and then over the top rope. He was greeted with cheers once again. The fans knew they were going to be in for a show, as the fast-paced, high flying abilities of ‘The Nice Guy’ would also meet the high flying and very entertaining abilities of another fan favorite, Max Hopper.
Then, it happened. One by one, each section of the arena went dark until the whole place was pitch black. It was almost as if someone, or something, had tampered with the lights. The Kingdom Arena was transformed into an eerie green. A thick cloud of fog rolled in. It was almost… alien.
Play-by-play commentator Michael Decker apologized to the IGS fans. “Ladies and gentleman, please excuse the interruption. We seem to be having problems with the- “ His feed cut out and was replaced by a screeching noise.
Amidst all the green, the Kingston Tron came to life, with a silvery object zooming to and fro in the distance. It grew closer and closer, until finally it was quite clear and almost close enough to touch.
It was a flying saucer! A hatch door opened, lowering a stairway and a bright, white light emanated from within the strange craft. A shadowy figure slowly took one step after another until it reached the ground. Finally, the mysterious being stood in the entryway, surrounded by the same bright, white light. The hatch door closed and the U.F.O. sped off. When it vanished from the Kingston Tron, the same silvery object appeared above the crowd!
As Jesse Ventura once said in an episode of The X-Files, “No other object has been misidentified as a flying saucer more often than the planet Venus.” However, this was not the planet Venus. This was the ‘Space Pimp’ Max Hopper! “Lost in Space” by Kool-Keith aired over the PA as Hopper stepped into the aisle, flinging his arms out wide.
The IGS Fans formed a veritable ocean of tinfoil hats. They ate up every minute of Max Hopper’s entrance, especially when he strolled up to a young fan and gave her the tinfoil hat off his own head! She didn’t have one of her own already.
Max Hopper strode to the ring and climbed up to the apron.
“Wow...” Kayden Paulton looked on from inside the ring. “His entrance is incredible...”
Hopper entered between the top and middle rope and with a click of his fingers, the lights and sound were restored to normal! His music came to a close but the crowd filled the arena with the same amount of noise as when the theme song was playing. They were hyped for this match. Max Hopper, obviously a much bigger name and superstar when compared to Kayden Paulton. Yet, these hardcore IGS fans knew ‘The Nice Guy’s’ move set and they were ready for the ring to be torn down.
Paulton walked to the center of the squared circle. He stuck out his right hand. “Really looking forward to this.”
Hopper nodded and without further hesitation, went to meet Paulton there. They shook hands.
“Let’s do this.” Hopper mentioned.
DING DING DING
Both circled the ring, the crowd in a frenzy. Paulton lunged at Hopper with a grapple attempt, but Hopper sidestepped it and shot off the ropes with a flying forearm. Paulton hit the mat. He jumped back on his feet and then circled Hopper a second time. He lunged again. Hopper, this time, lepted right overtop of Kayden. Before ‘The Passive-Aggressive’ turned around, he was hit with a backstabber. Hopper followed by sling-shooting Paulton into the turnbuckle and hitting the ropes himself upon Kayden’s impact.
Both men rose in a hurry. Paulton reversed an Irish whip and landed a sidewalk slam. He went to the second rope. Kayden attempted an elbow drop but Hopper rolled out of the way. Paulton rolled over too and once he got up, saw Max flying toward with with a flying single-arm clothesline.
Paulton caught the 'Space Pimp' and hooked the leg.
The crowd clapped as both men got to their feet. The match was only about one minute in and a flurry of moves were already performed. Paulton looked over at Hopper with a smile.
"Incredible." He said while Hopper agreed and shook his head yes. That's when Paulton walked to the center of the ring and put his right arm in the air. Hopper met him there and they quickly high-fived.
Hopper motioned for a grapple and Paulton agreed. The test of strength proved to have no winner. At first, it looked like Paulton took the advantage and moved Hopper back a few feet. Second, it looked like Hopper stole the advantage when he knelt down to one knee, regained his leverage and got back up... moving Paulton back a few steps now. This went back and forth for a good minute until Hopper broke the hold and hit Kayden with an elbow. Max bounced off the ropes and flew through the air with another flying clothesline attempt.
Hopper kicked out hard. It sent Kayden flying in the air as he did. When 'The Nice Guy' regained him composure, he pulled himself up to an upright position and this time he didn't see the flying arm clothesline coming.
"Finally." Hopper said to himself. He went back into the ropes and connected with a leg drop now. An Irish whip into the ropes and a hard hip toss later and Hopper was gaining some momentum with the crowd.
Kick, kick, kick. Hopper was hitting Paulton in the side of the head while 'The Nice Guy' was on his knees. Hopper bounced off the ropes and attempted a pele kick but Paulton had ducked it.
Max went to grab Kayden, but he received a jawbreaker for his troubles. Hopper stumbled back and Paulton jumped up onto his shoulders and connected with a hurricanrana into a pinning combination!
Hopper rolled through and had Paulton in his arms. He wasted no further time once the crowd realized he had the advantage and connected with a fall away slam.
Paulton's body bounced off the canvas and into the bottom rope. Hopper followed by hitting a dropkick. He dragged Kayden to the center of the ring, nailed him with a leg drop and went to the second rope.
An axehandle smash was countered, as Kayden hooked his right arm around Hopper's elbow in mid-air and threw him further across the ring with a mid-air hip toss. The crowd "ooh'ed" and "awe'ed" as the move was performed flawlessly while Max jumped out of the corner. The fans couldn't respond much more than that, however, as Hopper rose and ran towards his opponent once more.
Another hip toss.
With Hopper reeling, Paulton went to the second rope and connected with a shoulder block.
He positioned 'The Space Pimp' in the middle of the ring and went back up to the second buckle.
He went to the top instead.
Kayden didn't look for his finisher, not yet. A move like that would take more air-time than originally intended since he already wasted precious moments trying figuring out what he wanted to do. Instead, Paulton looked for a moonsault. But while up in mid-air he noticed Hopper starting to move and adjusted his course correctly.
Paulton landed on both feet.
Yet he didn't see the spinning heel kick coming.
The crowd cheered as Paulton flew into the ropes. Hopper met Kayden with a clothesline that sent both of them over and to the canvas floor below.
"Wow... nice one." Paulton said, trying to catch his breath and his thoughts.
"Almost had me." Hopper replied.
The two wrestlers recovered on the outside, while both acknowledged the ten count by the referee. Hopper got back to the ring at the count of 5 and Kayden, not wanting to waste further time, got in at about 6.
Hopper hit a diving DDT.
The crowd cheered as it meant the match would continue. Hopper chopped Paulton in the chest and then hurled him across to the turn buckle. Kayden used the ring post for leverage as he jumped over Hopper who charged in. Then he took hold of Max's waste and connected with a release belly to back suplex.
Hopper was sent head-over-heels in the air, in an amazing display of agility by the nbW Hall of Famer. Hopper, eventually, crashed to the mat, and Kayden, eventually, walked over to his opponent.
But not before asking the referee what happened.
Paulton lifted a dazed and confused opponent to his feet. This time, he hit a belly to belly side suplex and held on for one more.
Seemingly out of breath, Kayden waited for Max to rise. Once Hopper did, Paulton ran to the ropes and jumped on to Hopper's shoulders again, looking for another hurricanrana into a pinning combination.
Hopper held on.
Hopper couldn't believe it at first. He looked up at the referee to make sure Kayden had kicked out. Then, in a sign of good sportsmanship, Max Hopper nodded.
'The Space Pimp' pulled his opponent into his body and hit a northern lights suplex.
Hopper connected with a second northern lights suplex.
He tried for a third, but Paulton reversed it in mid-air and wiggled himself free. He bounced off the ropes and landed a well-placed cannonball right into Hopper's chest. Then he went for a top rope (not middle rope) lionsault to a massive pop from the fans!
Paulton hooked both legs.
This time, it was Kayden who was wide-eyed. He didn't question the referee, but he wasn't sure of reality, either. Paulton got to one knee, flipped his air back and then got to another. He stumbled to the corner of the ring, the bottom-left side of the ring to the hard camera.
He clapped his hands as Max started to stir.
He clapped them harder.
The crowd clapped along, too.
Once Max Hopper rose, Paulton shook his head in agreement. "Let's keep going."
He charged at Hopper, who side-stepped him and connected with a crescent kick. Then one more. He Irish-whipped Paulton chest-first into the turnbuckle and came in after him with a clothesline.
Hopper pointed to the top rope. He lifted Kayden up there first, back towards the ring. Then Max met him. It took a moment or two, but once Hopper was in the right position he went for a top rope backdrop, but flipped Paulton's body completely around in mid-air so the former Action Wrestling talent crashed to the mat stomach-first instead.
The crowd popped loudly for this move. Hopper struggled to compose himself, find Paulton, turn him over and hook a leg.
Another pop ensued. Hopper shook the cobwebs out of his head and hurled Kayden into the corner adjacent to his last big spot. He struck Paulton with an elbow and put him on the top rope again. Soon after, Max joined him.
He tried for a second backdrop but Paulton held his ground. Hopper tried to lift his opponent once more, but Kayden, again, held his ground.
Then, out of nowhere, Paulton was able to push Hopper to the canvas.
Kayden, slowly but surely... turned himself around to stand on the top rope, now facing the ring.
He went for another moonsault.
The crowd went insane as Hopper got up at the last second and hit Paulton with both knees right into his chest.
Kayden shot back up in the air before crashing down again. Meanwhile, from the sheer impact, Max Hopper flew sideways and grabbed his right leg.
"THIS IS AWESOME!"
Clap, clap, clap, clap, clap.
"THIS IS AWESOME!'
Paulton barely moved, but he did show signs of life by moving his right arm. Furthermore, Max Hopper was alive too and trying to get to his feet.
Hopper stumbled around, holding his right leg. He tried to walk over to Paulton, but he couldn't get there fast enough. The crowd was growing restless, in a good way of course. They wanted to see more action and they didn't know how it would end.
Finally, after a good struggle, Max Hopper made it to Kayden Paulton.
And that's when Paulton rolled him up.
DING DING DING!
Except that last part didn't happen.
Hopper kicked out at the very last second.
Paulton pulled Hopper back up to a vertical position and looked straight at him. Barely able to speak, Paulton lifted his right hand high in the air.
It was like Max Hopper showed an ability to no-sell for the 2 seconds it took him to high-five Kayden and then he and ‘The Nice Guy’ stumbled back to a respected corner simultaneously.
"LET'S GO HOPPER!"
"LET'S GO HOPPER!'
Instead of dueling chants, the crowd was shouting for both of them.
Kayden and Max ran at each other and both thought the same thing, cross body block.
Dead center in the middle of the ring they fell.
The referee started a ten count. The crowd kept their chants going, hoping this would not end in a no contest. Paulton went to the ropes and pulled himself to one knee. Hopper rolled to the corner and did the same using the turnbuckles. Once they both gained an upright position, they stumbled to the middle of the ring and locked into another grapple.
Hopper overpowered Paulton. Then Paulton overpowered Hopper. Back and forth it went until Hopper tossed his slightly taller opponent into the ropes and then into a headlock.
Followed by a quick sleeper hold.
Followed by an atomic drop by Kayden Paulton.
Paulton took Hopper's head, ran up the top rope and then sprung off it, connecting with a terrific looking running bulldog.
Kayden pointed to the top. He jumped straight up to the third rope and measured 'The Space Pimp'.
He went for a phoenix splash!
Hopper, now, got to his feet and pulled back his hair. Seething, he went to the top rope as well.
'All Hail the Hypno Toad'!
Barely able to move out of the way, but still doing so, 'The Nice Guy', the lesser known of the two talented high flying wrestlers... crawled at a very slow pace towards the ring ropes. He tugged the bottom rope and got to his chest. He tugged the second rope and got to one knee. He tugged the top rope and gained a vertical position.
Tilt-a-whirl headscissors by Hopper.
Then the 'Moon Landing'.
Hopper couldn't get his arm across to pin Paulton, however. He was absolutely spent in the ring. He barely moved. Both of them barely moved. The crowd filled the arena with cheers, clapping and stomps. The 5-Star Tournament was going all out and this was only round one.
Hopper practically shouted as he slammed his fists against the mat. Building off the energy in the crowd Max struggled and wobbled all over the place. He finally stood and made his way to Kayden-
Except, of course, the last two sentences DIDN'T happen again!
Hopper kicked out! The crowd went berserk! Max blocked a left kick but was then met with a strong enziguri! Paulton, finally looking like he was going to put this away, lifted Hopper up and into what looked to be the 'Feel Good!' trademark of his.
Once he got Hopper high enough, however, Max dug his way out of it, crushed Paulton with a ‘Genetic Clone of Pele Kick’ and went to the top.
'All Hail the Hypno Toad'.
This time it happened. The announcers put Max Hopper over in a huge way as he hardly moved on the canvas. Paulton, too, stayed motionless.
The chants slowly turned into...
"ONE MORE MATCH!"
Later in the night, they would get this with Hopper, anyway.
"Lost in Space" played over the PA. About two minutes later and both men came to. First, Hopper, who patted Paulton on the back and then went to the corner. Kayden made sure to acknowledge his opponent as he rolled on to his stomach and then hunched over both knees.
"Great... great match..." Paulton was barely able to say.
"Air high-five." Hopper said, before putting his hand up. Kayden smiled and did the same. He exited the ring. It was difficult for him to stay on both feet, but he promised the fans on the right side of the ramp he would greet them on the way out. By hell or high water, he was as determined to do this as he was to put everything on the line in the match.
Meanwhile, in the ring, Max Hopper celebrated with the crowd, hunched over on the ropes. He was one step closer to the 5-Star Championship.
The Tournament went to commercial.
To say that MacKenzie was frustrated would be putting it lightly. For the past thirty minutes, she had paced throughout the Kingdom Coliseum looking for her brother with no worry. With each passing minute, her anxiety rose through her throat and touched the top of her palette. She was nervous and almost to the point of freaking out when she opened the door to a rarely used room. It was there that she found David and she was ready to throw her shoes at him.
"Where the hell have you been?" she roared at him.
David hadn't heard the door open or his sister walk in, but he most definitely heard the rage in her voice. He slowly turned his head toward her. David sat on a wooden bench that looked like it was from the eighteenth century in terms of wear and tear. He was dressed for his first round match and looked to have been in deep contemplation before she opened the door.
"I've been looking for you," she told him, the rage starting to subside, just a bit. "I could hit you with my shoe." The rage still there though.
"Sorry," he muttered. There were times that David thought about wearing a shirt around his sister when he was waiting to go out to a ring and wearing his ring gear, but this was not one of those times. Instead, he seemed so out of it that he could be sitting in the room in the buff and he wouldn't think twice about it.
MacKenzie, dressed in a pair of tight fitting jeans and a white blouse that fell right below her knees, looked at her brother with deep concern. She had seen him like this before and knew it was never good if he was like this. His past had been troubled enough to push him to the point of avenues that she would never think he could go down, she knew it was best to keep those doors locked as tight as possible. Her hair was pulled up into a bun.
"What's wrong?" she asked him as she sat next to him, placing her hand on his right knee.
He just sat there, silent, but she could see the gears working in his mind, trying to analyze something, trying to put something where it belonged, but unable to do so.
"David," she whispered to him, but he still sat there, looking at her, but not looking at her. "Your match," she began.
"Gamble," he muttered back to her.
David slowly nodded his head, but the uncertainty weighed on her slightly. "This is going to be a tough night for you," she told him. He sighed and struggled to put a smile on his face.
"Don't worry, I've got this."
Then he rose to his feet, bent over, and kissed his sister on the top of her head. MacKenzie just sat there, struggling to keep her emotions in tight, not wanting him to see how she was really feeling.
"I know you do. Now go show them all that you've got this," she responded, putting on her best face for him. He nodded his head and then exited the room, with every thought except this match on his mind.
As the door closed, she felt the tears flood out of her. She just hunched over, elbows on knees, and saw the tears fall onto the weathered carpet below her.
"Fuck," she whispered, the tears continuing to flow out of her, knowing in her heart that David was slipping and felt in her gut that it was all her fault, for pushing him back into this arena when he needed to stay as far away from it as possible.
"The following match is the final first round match up, in the the Five Star Spetacle! It is set, for one fall!" Peter Greenberg ROARED!
FEEEED MY FRANKENSTEEEIIIIINNNN
'Feed My Frankenstein' by Alice Cooper began blaring over the PA system as Erick Gamble appeared from behind the curtain. He was wearing his usual attire, blue jeans and his hands wrapped in athletic tape.
"Hailing from Toledo Ohio.... ERICK! GAAAAAAAAAAAAAMBLE!"
"This next match will feature Erick Gamble facing off against David Noble, both of whom were successful in their matches at IGS 1," Michael noted.
"This is going to be over quick. Noble will eat the pinfall and Gamble will move on quickly," Alan responded.
"I don't think it's going to be quite that easy."
"And The Opponent.."
Then, as the lights dimmed, "Believer" by Imagine Dragons ripped through the Kingdom Coliseum and twenty thousand fans immediately rose to their feet. The tron flashed a series of images from the career of David Noble, highlighting moments from PRIME, fWo, and DEFIANCE.
First things firstI'ma say all the words inside my headI'm fired up and tired of the way that things have been, oh oohThe way that things have been, oh ooh
Then from the back, dressed in a pair of black tights and wrestling boots emerged David Noble. On his tights, his left leg spelled out his first name and his right leg spelled out his right name.
Second thing secondDon't you tell me what you think that I can beI'm the one at the sail, I'm the master of my sea, oh oohThe master of my sea, oh ooh
David began to make his way down the ramp, his fist connected with the fists of his fans. He could feel the energy in the Coliseum as he felt the goosebumps run over his arms.
I was broken from a young ageTaking my soul into the massesWrite down my poems for the fewThat looked at me took to me, shook to me, feeling meSinging from heart ache from the painTake up my message from the veinsSpeaking my lesson from the brainSeeing the beauty through the
Noble then slid into the ring through the bottom rope and ran up the opposite turnbuckle with his arms outstretched.
Fireworks exploded in the Coliseum, behind him and around the arena.
You made me a, you made me a believer, believer(Pain, pain)You break me down, you build me up, believer, believer(Pain)I let the bullets fly, oh let them rainMy luck, my love, my God, they came from(Pain)You made me a, you made me a believer, believer
He hopped off the top turnbuckle and landed on his feet as the lights turned back on and the music faded out. He looked over at his opponent and was ready for battle.
"Hailing from Buffalo, New York and standing at six feet two inches tall... DAVID! NOBLE!"
Noble moved around the ring, stretching his arms out.
"Already becoming a huge fan favorite here in IGS," Michael noted.
"That's because they are fools."
DING! DING! DING!
With the sound of the bell, the match was off and Gamble wasted no time as he immediately attempted to connect with a Running Yakuza Kick, with Noble barely dodging it.
"WHOA! Gamble trying to end this match RIGHT away with the Scalper!" Michael roared, surprised by the sudden turn of events.
"That would definitely be one way to advance in this tournament," Alan remarked.
"That it would be."
"Do NOT copy me today. I'm NOT in the mood!"
Noble quickly recovered, wrapped his arms around the smaller Gamble, and went for a German Suplex only for Gamble to flip behind David on the lift. Noble turned around and narrowly ducked a roundhouse kick and then went for a free standing enziguri only for Gamble to duck that as well.
"Neither man able to connect here tonight," Alan quickly stated.
"Much like Alan and most of the women he walks up to in bars," Michael shot back.
"See? This is why you make a horrible wingman."
With Noble on the mat, Gamble went to grab Noble’s legs only for David to connect with a yule kick that sent Gamble into the corner.
"Both men at a standstill," Michael noted. "Both men are definitely athletic and quick, which should provide a high energy match in our special event tonight."
"The Five Star tournament. Needless to say, you're going to see some outstanding wrestling here tonight," Alan responded.
"Look at you. Coming off like a real announcer."
"Don't make me shove my coffee mug up your ass."
"Did you take your pills?"
Both competitors, Gamble in the corner and Noble on his knees in the middle of the ring looked at one another for a few moments. Noble looked ready while Gamble was salivating at the thought of taking Noble out of this tournament. Gamble rushed at Noble only for David to lift Gamble in the air and drop him face first into the opposite top turnbuckle.
"Oof!" Michael exclaimed. "That's not going to feel good in the morning."
"Not that you would know," Alan chided Michael.
"Yes, because you are the expert on taking shots to the face," Michael responded.
"I--" Michael started and then quickly stopped, with fans later remarking they were certain they heard Michael softly crying.
Gamble stumbled backwards and David connected with a dropkick to his back that sent him back into the turnbuckle. Noble then lifted him up onto the top turnbuckle before putting him into the Tree of Woe.
"This is NOT going to bode well for Gamble," Michael noted.
"What exactly is the referee doing here? Just letting these two go on a leisurely stroll?"
"I think they're fighting each other, Alan."
"I know what they're doing, Michael! GOSH!"
Noble ran to the opposite corner and then ran at Gamble, sliding the last few inches and threw out his right arm for a clothesline.
"Okay, that hurt," Alan noted in surprise. "Apparently this Noble kid has some skill."
"Kid? This man has been regarded as one of the best wrestlers in the ring."
"What are you, President of his fan club?"
"Don't be sad because you don't have a fan club, Alan."
Noble, on the outside of the ring, hopped back onto the ring apron before he used the top rope as a springboard and connected with a stiff knee to the face of Gamble. Gamble fell off of the top turnbuckle as Noble makes his way to the second turnbuckle.
"Noble is taking this fight right to Gamble," Michael noted.
"I'm not sure what Gamble is doing here, but he's not looking great. He might want to fix that, you know, quickly."
"Well, it would bode well if he wants to win this match."
Noble then went for a moonsault only for Gamble to roll out of the way. Noble managed to land on his feet only for Gamble to connect with a kick to the midsection. With Noble doubled over, Gamble connected with a swinging neckbreaker.
"And there we go!" Alan roared. "Finally, Gamble in complete control of this match."
"Um, complete control?"
"Yes, in charge. Do I need to buy you a dictionary?"
"Maybe you should start with a pair of glasses for yourself."
Gamble made his way back to his feet, dragging Noble up with him and whipped him into the ropes before connecting with a clothesline. Noble's head bounced off the mat in the process and he grabbed his head in agony. Gamble then bounced off the ropes and dropped an elbow across Noble’s sternum.
"Gamble definitely starting to take it to Noble here. After Noble made his intentions very clear last week, he had to know that he put a massive bullseye on his back," Michael stated.
"Massive. Like HBO with Game of Thrones leaks massive."
"Listen, no spoilers. Or I will have to kill you, Alan."
"No worries. #boatsex."
"What was that?!" Michael yelled at Alan.
"Nothing. Nothing at all. #jonanddanygetiton."
Gamble hopped back up to his feet, bounced off the ropes again, and dropped a leg across Noble’s throat. Gamble continued the assault as he mounted Noble, slamming fist after fist into his jaw until the referee made him break it up.
Noble tried to make his way back up to his feet, but was caught by Gamble who whipped him into the corner and nailed him with a sickening uppercut. Noble felt the pain through his shoulders and neck, grimacing in pain. Noble stumbled out of the corner only for Gamble to connect with a Northern Lights Suplex.
"And Gamble the first to go for the pinfall in this match!" Alan roared. "Get him Gamble, get him!"
"Gamble's going to need a bit more than that to get Noble down and out in this match."
"How do you know?"
"I see the future."
"Yep. Just like I know you're not getting any tonight."
"I seriously hate you," Alan sighed.
Gamble looked at the referee who confirms the two count. Gamble hopped back up to his feet and bounced off the ropes, looking for another elbow to Noble only for David to roll out of the way, Gamble crashing to the mat much to his surprise. Noble made his way up to his feet and connected with a standing hurricanrana on his opponent.
"The fans coming alive there after the sheer athleticism that Noble showed right there!" Michael roared. "That might be the break Noble needed to turn the tide there."
"I'm pretty positive that is illegal."
"What are you talking about?"
"Jumping that high. Check the rule book."
"Check your skull."
David took a moment to gather his breath, winded from the onslaught by Gamble. He got up and caught a rising Gamble with a back elbow to the jaw which he followed up with a hip toss. He bounced off the ropes as Gamble sat up and slammed the toe of his left foot into the spine of his opponent.
"AH!" Gamble yelled out from the pain.
"Come on ref!" Alan yelled. "That's NOT legal!"
"Yes it is, you goof," Michael responded. "Don't start this nonsense. We've still got a long night ahead of us."
"Noble can't do stuff like that."
"Noble only hip tossed him and kicked him in the back. Tell me what part of that isn't legal?"
"The fact that he is, um... BREATHING!"
Gamble winced in pain as Noble bounced off the ropes again and connected with a flying knee to the face. Noble then goes for the cover.
"And a near fall there for Noble as he's starting to pick up the pace here!" Michael noted.
"Man, I saw Gamble. He gave me a look that said watch this. He let them get that two count."
"That is the dumbest thing I've ever heard you say," Michael responded.
"Really? The dumbest?"
Noble pulled himself up and went to pull Gamble up with him when Gamble manages to get him into a small package!
"Count faster, ref!" Alan yelled.
"Calm it down," Michael responded.
"YOU CAN'T MAKE ME!"
"Yell in my ear one more time and just watch me."
Both men rushed to their feet and Gamble managed to get a punch in on Noble. David was staggered as Gamble flew off the ropes and connected with a Slingblade on Noble! Noble went down as Gamble slingshots him off the ropes and nailed a Senton onto the prone Noble.
"And just like that, Gamble is back in control of the match as he took the offense to Noble," Michael noted.
"That hurt you, didn't it?"
"To say that, it hurt you."
"You're the biggest idiot I've ever met."
David rolled onto his knees in pain, which opened himself up to a punt to the ribs from Gamble. Gamble then pulled Noble up off the mat, whipped him into the ropes, and nailed him with a backbreaker, driving his knee into the spine of his opponent.
"Now Gamble is methodically picking apart Noble," Alan noted. "This is the beginning of the end for Noble."
"Noble still shaking off that ring rust, just making his debut in late August with no match in between then and now."
"Stop making excuses for himself."
"When you stop making excuses to those hookers."
Gamble dragged Noble to the nearest set of ropes, planted Noble’s right leg on the middle rope and then bounced of the ropes before dropping all of his weight onto the elevated leg of Noble.
"AHHHHHH!" Noble moaned in pain as he slammed his fist into the mat multiple times.
"The beginning of the end," Alan remarked.
"Far from it," Michael shot back.
With David howling out in pain, Gamble proceeded to kick it repeatedly. Shot after shot as Noble felt the tendons in his knee yelling out in agony. He then dragged Noble into the middle of the ring and placed him into a Texas Cloverleaf! Noble grimaced in pain as he held out, the referee checking on him, and Noble refusing to tap out.
"This could be it!" Alan roared. "Gamble is going to move on to the next round of the tournament!
"Noble hasn't tapped out yet."
"It's only a matter of time," Alan shot back. "You just watch!"
"Well, he hasn't done it yet."
"Just you wait!"
Noble began crawling towards the ropes, refusing to give up, only for Gamble to drag him back into the middle of the ring. Noble claws at the mat in a world of pain as he tried again to make his way to the ropes.
"Noble doing everything he can to get to those ropes," Michael noted.
"Fruitless. Might as well tap and live to fight another day."
"You really think that's going to happen?"
"A man can dream, right?"
"I'm certain that's all you do."
As he got closer, Gamble lifted some of the pressure to move him into the middle of the ropes again, which Noble used as an opening to twist his body and sent Gamble head first into the bottom turnbuckle. Gamble sat there dazed as Noble pulled himself up using the ropes and fired off a series of kicks to the downed opponent.
"And now Noble is unleashing his fury onto Gamble!" Michael roared.
"What?! What is happening?! NO!" Alan yelled back. "OUCH!"
"I told you about yelling in my ear."
"I HATE YOU!" Alan shot back. "OUCH! FINE! I WON'T DO IT ANYMO-- OWWWWWW!"
Noble then dragged Gamble up off of the mat and his feet and connected with a knee to the face.
Gamble stumbled back into the ropes. Noble went for a clothesline only for Gamble to block it with an elbow to the face.
"Gamble's not down and out yet!" Alan noted.
"No, he's not as he managed to catch Noble flush with that elbow shot."
"Gamble's going to win! Gamble's going to win!"
"...you are pointless."
With Noble stunned, Gamble then flew off the ropes only for Noble to catch him and send over the top rope and onto the ring apron. As Noble turned towards Gamble, Gamble fired off a forearm to the face of his opponent. Gamble then slingshots himself off the top rope only for Noble to catch him in mid-air with a dropkick to the ribs.
"What a brutal shot for Gamble!" Michael roared. "That could've cracked a rib or two!"
"See? Noble shouldn't be allowed to move forward in this tournament. He's too dangerous."
"Your thoughts are dangerous and yet we let you roam around here."
Both men are slow to their feet with Noble catching him with a knife-edge chop.
The sound echoed throughout the Coliseum. Gamble went for a forearm shot, but Noble managed to duck it, reach behind him and nailed him with a neck breaker. Noble then kipped up and roars out at the audience who return with a loud cheer.
"And Noble starting to feel another burst surge through his veins," Michael noted.
"Did you just mention Noble's been shooting up drugs?"
"Just checking. You know, in case."
Noble then bounced off the ropes and as he neared Gamble, went into a handstand and seemingly floated there until he brought his leg down across the throat of Gamble.
"Noble can do it all!" Michael roared. "Blending grace with speed and athleticism!"
"That's not impressive."
"You can't get your dick hard. You have no business telling someone if something is impressive or not."
"I told you that in confidence!"
"Yep, and I just said it confidently. Burn."
Noble then pulled Gamble up off the mat, whipped him into the ropes and nailed him with another text book dropkick. Gamble quickly rolled out of the ring to gather himself, but Noble was in no mood to wait as he bounced off the ropes again and soared over the top rope with a spinning plancha.
"And Noble taking to the air here!" Michael roared.
"Listen to these idiots. Gamble clearly needed a breathe and Noble has no respect for that!"
"This is a wrestling match, not a courtship."
"Your mother is a courtship."
"Yes she is. Thank you for noticing and giving up on the thought of dating my mother.
Gamble crashed hard to the mat as Noble took a moment to gather himself. As Gamble grabbed the ring apron, David hopped onto the ring apron and ran full speed at Gamble before planting him on the outside with a DDT.
"And Noble taking it up to another level here!" Michael noted.
"Can we not get some order here?! These two are fighting outside of the ring!"
"I know. I hate you."
"I know. So do I."
David grabbed Gamble and rolled him into the ring. Noble hopped onto the ring apron and slingshots himself over the top rope before connecting with a splash on the prone Gamble. Noble then went for the cover.
"And another near fall there for Noble, who has to be feeling good right about now," Michael stated. "Good? About what? He hasn't won anything yet."
"Do you hear yourself talk sometimes?"
"Duh. I'm wearing headphones."
David hopped back up to his feet, began to drag Gamble up with him, only for his opponent to rake his eyes. Gamble then nailed him with a stiff kick to the chest before he bounced off the ropes and connected with a flying roundhouse kick.
"SHAKLAKA BOOM BOOM!" Alan roared.
"What in the hell was that?"
"My chant for Gamble."
"I hope that chant dies a fast and painful death."
Gamble began to stomp away at Noble, only stopped after the referee informed him if he didn't that he would have to disqualify him.
"Are you serious ref?!" Michael yelled out in shock.
"Oh calm down."
Gamble smacked Noble a few times across the face and dragged him up to his feet before he pushed him into the corner and nailed him with one shoulder to the stomach after another.
"And Gamble is taking the pain right back to Noble here," Michael noted.
"Oh yes he is. This seems like the end is near for Noble!"
"Gamble would have to mark this down as a huge victory if he can pull it off."
Noble slowly slumped into the corner from the shots until he was sitting in the corner. Gamble backed up and then ran full speed at Noble before slamming his knees into Noble's face.
"What a brutal shot from Gamble!" Michael roared. "Noble is definitely reeling after that one."
"YOU'RE MY BOY BLUE!"
"You really want to yell in my ear again?"
With Noble rolling around on the mat, writhing in pain, Gamble played to the audience.
He then walked back over to Noble, kneeled over to pick him up, and was pleasantly surprised when Noble pulled him in and placed him into a Gogoplata as the crowd roared behind him.
"WHOA!" Michael exploded. "Out of NOWHERE!"
"This isn't happening," Alan whimpered. "No, I refuse to believe this is happening."
"Why don't you get in there and ask Gamble if this is really happening. Oh wait, he can't speak right now."
Noble's eyes opened big as the fire was evident in them. He wretched back and watched as Gamble frantically flailed, hoping to get free of the hold.
"This could be it for Gamble! Noble has got it locked in and Gamble might be moments from passing out here!" Michael roared.
"Not happening!" Alan shot back.
"Well, I don't think you really have any say in that."
"Oh, I do... you're right. I don't."
Gamble kept clawing away at Noble and only managed to break the hold when he flipped himself forward and pinned David.
"That's how smart Gamble is!" Alan roared. "Can't hold him down."
"If he's so smart, how'd he get into that hold?"
"I'm going to have to ask my lawyer.
"How about you do that?"
As Gamble rolled around on the mat, clutching his throat, Noble took a moment to pull himself up using the ropes. Gamble made his way to his knees and then to his feet, but never saw Noble coming at him and connecting with a bulldog.
Noble then hopped onto the middle turnbuckle and nailed a moonsault onto Gamble before going for the pin.
"Noble almost put Gamble away there!" Michael noted.
"Almost being the key word there."
"Yes, I know, Alan. I said it. I watched it."
"Always so angry, Michael. I wonder why."
"Yes, I wonder why," Michael sighed.
Noble looked out at the fans and clapped his hands as he felt the Coliseum rocking. He made his way back up to his feet, pulled Gamble up with him, and went for a German Suplex only for Gamble to land on his feet.
"Look at that from Gamble!" Michael exclaimed. "That's a REAL wrestler."
"What does that even mean?"
"He's not... fake."
"And Noble is fake."
Gamble wrapped his arms around Noble's waist, but David fired off a succession of back elbows to his jaw to break the hold.
Noble then did a standing switch and connected with a bridging German Suplex.
"Gamble almost ate the pinfall again!" Michael roared.
"Almost! But he's not out of this match yet."
"He needs to do something and quick if he wants to remain in this match. Noble's momentum is about to run him over."
"That would be illegal."
"It would be the EXACT opposite of illegal."
Noble made his way back up to his feet, pulled Gamble up with him, and whipped him into the ropes. Noble went for a clothesline, but Gamble ducked underneath it. Noble turned and was met with a flying cross body from Gamble.
"Gamble catching Noble by surprise there," Michael noted.
"Here we go..."
Gamble quickly rolled off of Noble and as David rose to his feet, he was met with a Running Yakuza Kick to the face! Noble crumpled to the mat as Gamble looked on in surprise.
"YES! YES! YES!" Alan roared. "It's ALL over!"
"That was a devastating shot Noble just took there and he didn't even see it coming!"
"That's just how the cookie crumbles. Now it's time for Gamble to put this one away."
"He definitely looks like he's ready to put Noble away with the Curb Stomp."
Gamble watched patiently as Noble struggled to his feet. As Noble began to get to his knees, Gamble bounced off the ropes and went for a curb stomp only for Noble to launch him in the air and connect with a Crucifix Cutter onto Gamble, catching everyone off guard with the sudden movement.
"And the roof just came unhinged after the Last Chance from Noble!" Michael roared.
"No, no, no," Alan moaned.
"We don't normally see the Last Chance from Noble, but there was never a better time to bust it out! Gamble is laid OUT!"
"No, no, no," Alan continued to moan.
Noble dropped to one knee as Gamble laid there not knowing where he was. Noble then rolled Gamble over and hooked the leg.
"Your winner, and moving on in the Five Star Tournament... DAVID! NOBLE!" Peter Greenberg exploded.
"And Noble has done it! He is onto the next round of the Five Star Tournament!"
"I don't know what just happened," Alan cried.
"Noble, after a hard fought match, managed to connect with the Crucifix Cutter out of nowhere and end this match before Gamble could connect with the Curb Stomp."
"I'm going to be sick," Alan moaned.
"Then do it over there and away from me."
Noble sat on the mat as the fans cheered him on. He looked up at the referee who helped him to his feet. David felt the pain in his body as it continued to get acclimated to being back in the ring again. This victory though definitely helped him feel better as he scaled the nearby turnbuckle and lifted his hands in the air as "Believer" by Imagine Dragons played behind him.
"Noble will move onto the next round of the tournament and it will definitely continue to be a test of endurance for him if he wants to walk out of here the Five Star Champion," Michael noted.
"Hope he loses," Alan remarked.
"I'm sure that's the case, Alan.." Decker answered calmly, "Now! I've got word that Amelia Mazzi has caught up with General Manager, John Ackerman, in his office backstage to get a few comments on the words from Kellen Wolff earlier this evening.."
"That's Kracken, Michael!"
The scene cut to the familiar office of John Ackerman, the man himself looked somewhat frazzled with papers strown about his desk and his tie slightly undone. Upon noticing the film crew and Ms. Mazzi he appeared surprised.
A-hem. He straightened his tie and sat up a little straighter as Amelia Mazzi moved in and began to speak..
"Mr. Ackerman, do you have a moment to respond to the challenge from The Kracken earlier in the evening?"
"A-hem. Uh, well I'm currently very busy with some contract forms and some legal matters, but I will say this. The actions tonight of Kellen Wolff against Sean Warner were brash and unnecessary. And as far as I'm concerned he hasn't proved himself enough to merit a championship opportunity. Especially not an opportunity at the grandest prize of them all. The IGS World Championship. So. On IGS 3 we are gonna have a match. Kellen Wolff and Sean Warner. And if Kellen wins.. I'll THINK about discussing a championship contendership with Mr. Roland. Now if you will, please, excuse me."
The crew showed themselves out the door as the scene faded to commercial break.
The camera returned to the announce table with Michael Decker and Alan McTaggart about to drop some news.
"Welcome back to our special Five Star Tournament show!" said Michael Decker. "Before we get to the next match in tonight's tournament, we've got some big news regarding a new signing to the growing IGS tag team division!"
"Tell me it's some really hot strippers," said McTaggart. "Not that I don't appreciate the talents of men like Stretch Kill Dismember and the Wild Kards, but this is turning into a grade-A sausagefest..."
"Sorry to disappoint you, partner."
"It's okay. Used to it."
"Moving on," sighed Decker. "We just found out earlier today that we have the signing of a very anticipated tag team! If you're familiar with other organizations such as the defunct ACW and the active NBW, then you're familiar with the man known... as Tyson XL!"
"Whoa, that's some heavy lumber!" said McTaggart. "That guy can fly for a fatty!"
"Wow... but again moving on. Tyson XL has recently been training a pupil of his over the last year at his own personal wrestling school, XL Dojo, along with wrestling legend, Spike Saunders. Tyson's tag team partner, is the the young, hungry and talented man known as Plazma! Much like Spike, a towering presence. And much like Tyson XL, the feats of agility he can pull off in the ring are downright unbelievable for a man of his size and stature."
"All right... I'll believe it when I see it then."
"Well you're going to get your wish partner! We have a video package coming up for the impending arrival of Tyson XL and Plazma... together they make up THE DANGEROUS MIX!!!"
The feed suddenly cuts at the announce table to said hype video. A red alarm repeatedly flashes as words cross the screen.
WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! CROSSING THE DANGEROUS MIX WILL PROVE HAZARDOUS TO YOUR HEALTH... SYMPTOMS INCLUDE...
Clips played of the massive Tyson XL. Weighing in at six-foot three and close to three hundred pounds... and various victims over the years falling victim to his incredible agility...
Impactful suicide dives.
Graceful somersault topes.
Running corkscrew planchas.
The names and the faces are various and all shapes and sizes of wrestler, being caught off-guard by the man known as the Big Gun.
Pop-up powerbombs nearly breaking various victims in half.
His signature Meteor Crush moonsault putting an end to the hopes of wrestlers hoping to be victorious.
LOSS OF BREATH...
Now more scenes played of the other member of the Dangerous Mix – Plazma! Six-foot seven and two-hundred and sixty-four pounds...
Plazma running up the corner and then diving onto two wrestlers behind him with a springboard cross body from the top turnbuckle.
Plazma unleashing devastating moves such as a hesitation drop kick to one wrestler in a corner, another one having his head taken off with his Ionic Charge discus lariat.
FEELINGS OF HELPLESSNESS...
Plazma clearing the top rope, diving onto a group of wrestlers with a no hands suicide plancha over the top rope!
The two men appeared on screen now with Tyson XL with his arms folded and Plazma flashing the camera a very confident grin.
THE DANGEROUS MIX
After the video package concluded, the camera was focused back on ringside with McTaggart's jaw dropped and Decker smirking at him.
"Do you believe it now that you've seen it, Alan?" asked Decker.
"Wow. Yeah. That's insane," stammered McTaggart.
"And we've just got word that on IGS's third episode, the Dangerous Mix will be making their debut against none other than the Wild Kards! Seth and Sean are going to have their hands full against these heavyweights that move like cruiserweights! Welcome the Dangerous Mix to the IGS roster coming soon!"
“Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for the first of two semi-final rounds in this, thus far, spectacular spectacle of a tournament!” Decker announced as the lights dimmed down and the familiar drum and banjo began to chime through the public address.
“The following contest is set for one fall..”
“ONE FALL!” The crowd chanted.
“Introducing first, from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania…”
Yeah,I can never be timid, start to the finishEven through blemishes my heart is replenishedViolent images, with somethin’ in store it’s kinda heavyHold steady I’m ready for war with the P.O.A party time I’m sorry I apologizedIt's obvious that you ignore the truth just to acknowledge liesAnd honestly this is a promise not a threatSo you better watch your commas while your conscience is suspect
Forget the politics the dollars in your wallet justNo one comin' home for everyone I have a problem wit'Don't look astonished 'cause you knew that it was comin'You lookin' at me dumb, I suggest you start runnin'You have that Christian face but I'm chasin' you downLosin' patience you flickin' the cues, breakin' the vowsTomorrow isn't promised and that's even if you live todayWatch what you say or somebody's gonna need a grave
Chris Richards strode through the curtain and into the lights of the Kingdom Coliseum, his eyes confident, a wide grin on his face. He took in the crowds reaction with a deep breath and heading to the squared circle, shaking hands and giving high fives on the way in his usual manner. Richards slid into the ring and Peter Greenberg started up once more as the referee checked Chris’ pads.
“And his opponent….”
Once more the lights of the Kingdom Coliseum were systematically shut off and the scene plunged into darkness.
“Here we go again…” McTaggart said with a sigh.
And eerie green light filled the entryway, ramp, and ring as mist began to cover the concrete floor.
"He is the Space Pimp..... Max Hooooppeeerrrrrrr.."
No saucer came though. Hopper, with little notice to anyone, was suddenly a top the announce table as those same eerie green lights redirected to spotlight light his appearance. The crowd cheered and the building suddenly glowed as the lights reflected off tinfoil hats.
“Where the hell did he…..” McTaggart started but trailed off.
Hopper climbed the apron and stepped through the ropes. The two locked eyes and the crowds reaction was enormous yet mixed as the hometown hero and the space pimp stood in the center of the ring. They nodded and Hopper turned once more to the crowd.
“Here we go, this semi-final match is officially underway… OH MY!”
As Decker spoke, and Hopper turned around he met Richards left knee with his face and hit the mat. Richards dropped for the cover.
The reaction of the crowd was both excitement and awe as Richards stood and the referee raised his hand.
“What in the world just happened, Michael!”
“Well, Alan…. I’m not really sure. It appears that Richards wanted to win, and wanted to do it quick. Get in, get out, get ready. That knee was absolutely brutal!”
“I hate to admit this…… but it’s a pretty solid plan.” McTaggart said begrudgingly.
Max Hopper shook his head in disbelief as he sat up on the mat, a curse slipped from his lips just before the camera cut away to a commercial break.
David heard the roar of the crowd as he sat down in the doctor's office. No matter how he cut it, he only had minutes before he was going to be back out in that ring again, this time against Phaser. His body was wracked with pain and he felt every ounce of it as he laid down. Before he had a chance to even breathe, the door exploded open and from the lilac perfume she was wearing, David knew it was his sister.
"How're you feeling?" she asked him and David looked over at her, noting to himself that she had recently been crying and that she'd reapplied her makeup to cover up that fact.
"Like I had a good massage out there," he responded sarcastically. She slapped him against the side of his head and he flinched slightly.
"You don't have long before your next match," MacKenzie offered.
"No shit," he sighed as he sat up. The doctor walked over to him and began checking him out to make sure he wasn't too banged up to go out there again.
"Sorry," she whispered.
David shook his head. "You're fine. Just that bastard took a bit more out of me then I would've liked. And now I've got another match in a couple of minutes followed by a match right after. I'm crabby. Probably my time of the month."
MacKenzie chuckled. "It probably is. Listen, you've got to pace yourself out there. Your body isn't ready for this, not yet. You don't have to risk it all, you don't have to kill yourself out there. Give your body, and your mind, time to adjust to the punishment."
"Can't," David responded as he lifted his arms for the doctor. "You know me, nothing less than everything I've got."
MacKenzie shook her head. "Oh, fine. Then let me just go and meet you at the hospital instead of waiting here. Because that's where you're going to end up."
"You know you're going to regret saying that if I do end up at the hospital."
MacKenzie sighed. "I hate you so much."
"I can tell."
Noble stood up and looked at the doctor. "I'm good?"
He didn't even wait for a response as he walked out the door with MacKenzie in tow.
"Why ask him the question if you're just going to leave?" she asked him.
"Because there's no way in hell I'm not going out there to fight again. That's plain and simple. That title is coming home with me tonight, no matter what."
She stopped in her tracks. Noble spun around after a few steps and looked at her. He noted the look on her face, the look of apprehension.
"What?" he asked her.
"No matter what? I didn't sign up for you killing yourself in that ring, David. I didn't sign up to watching you destroy yourself again."
He took a few steps back towards her. "You know what I mean."
Mac shook her head. "Do I?"
"I would sure hope so by now, Mac. This is who I am. Nothing less than all I've got. I need that title around my waist."
Mac sighed again. "Three matches in one night, with a few minutes in between the first two and no time in between the last one. Richards or Hopper will at least have a minute in between. Chris is probably as fresh as they come since he opened the show and he's new to all of this. Hopper wrestled right after Richards and is just batshit crazy enough to not know any better. You're going to be at a disadvantage the moment the bell rings on your last match."
David took a long look at her, his face becoming stern. "So, what are you suggesting I do? Just throw in the towel."
"No, obviously not. Just realize that you do nobody any good if you can't go out there for the next show. Pace yourself. Think about yourself."
David shook his head and turned to walk away.
"Why is this so damn important to you?"
David spun back around and looked at his sister. "Because there are going to be bigger things, tougher things to come down the pipe and if I'm not ready tonight, if I show any weakness, then I'm never going to be ready for what's about to come."
MacKenzie was confused. "What is coming?"
David shook his head, not wanting to tell her about the note. "Nevermind."
Then they heard the roar of the crowd. Richards had won the match.
"I've got to go," he muttered to MacKenzie. He then spun and walked away before she could even get a word out to him.
"Good luck," she muttered as he walked out of sight, leaving her all alone to herself.
“The following match set for one fall and is the second of two Semi-Final matches of the Five Star Spectacle!.."
The crowd roared.
The hard beat and stiff rhymes of “Wild International” by One Day As A Lion hit the air, and the IGS screen began flashing “PHASER” in red and black intervals. Out walked the man named Phaser in black and red attire with a pair of aviators, and he looked all sorts of pissed off. “HAILING FROM EAGLE, COLORADO, STANDING AT SIX FEET TALL AND WEIGHING TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTEEN POUNDS! “PHASERRRRRRR”
Phaser made his way to the ring, feeling slightly refreshed from his first round match.
“And we are ready for the second of our second round match here, Chris Richards victorious just moments ago and now we will find out who will face him in the final tonight as we watch Phaser and David Noble fight,” Michael noted.
“You are so wordy,” Alan responded.
“Well, I’ve got to balance out your nonsense.”
“One of these days--”
“You’ll do nothing. Sit there and shut up.”
“His opponent…” Peter continued.
I was broken from a young ageTaking my soul into the massesWrite down my poems for the fewThat looked at me took to me, shook to me, feeling meSinging from heart ache from the painTake up my message from the veinsSpeaking my lesson from the brainSeeing the beauty through the...
Noble made his way around the ring, looking slightly worn down from his earlier match.
“You have to wonder how much Noble has in the tank right now,” Michael noted.
“Hopefully nothing. Then Phaser can win this match and then defeat Richards in the Finals. That’s my dream scenario right now,” Alan responded.
“Well, that’s why we have the matches. Noble’s last match was right before our last match so he hasn’t had a ton of time to recuperate.”
“Good, even better. Let’s get this match started!”
At the sound of the bell, Phaser came out of the gates hot, but Noble cut him off at the pass with a series of fists and kicks that drove Phaser into the ropes. Noble drilled his knee repeatedly into Phaser's midsection before he whipped him across the ring and dropped with a Discus Elbow.
"Noble, literally wrestling in the match before last, has to be feeling the ill effects of that fight and is doing everything he can to slow Phaser down in the opening moments of this match," Michael noted.
"He's not going to have much gas in the tank though," Alan responded.
"That's going to be the difference maker in this match."
"See? Already ripping my stuff off."
Phaser went down in a heap as Noble walked over to him and goes to pick him up off the mat only to be met with a stiff kick to the head from Phaser.
"It didn't take long for Phaser to get back in the driver's seat," Alan noted.
"Noble is definitely feeling that shot as it is taking him a bit longer to shake the cobwebs off of it."
"You try getting kicked in the head like that."
"Experience from hookers?"
Phaser made his way up to his feet and began drilling Noble with a series of kicks to his torso and the back of his legs. With each shot, the pain is evident on Noble's face until Phaser blasts him with a roundhouse kick to the face that sends Noble face down into the mat.
"Yikes! Noble is DOWN!" Michael shouted. "Each kick from Phaser was more vicious than the last and Noble had no way of stopping it. He's a half step too slow and his endurance is definitely shot right now."
"Noble might have pulled off the first match in spectacular fashion, but right now, he is in a world of hurt."
"Being away for a few years with very little training is not going to do him any favors. And the winner of this match will be squaring off against Chris Richards, with virtually NO time in between."
"Looks like Richards might be walking away as the 5*Star Champion then. Which would make me physically ill."
Phaser lifted Noble off of the mat, whipped him into the ropes and connected with a superkick to his jaw. Noble hangs there, nearly out of it, until Phaser finished it off with a neckbreaker that planted Noble in the middle of the ring. He then goes for the cover.
"Phased and Diffused there from Phaser and it definitely appeared that he might have gotten the early victory over Noble there!" Michael roared.
"It definitely did. If Phaser is busting out the heavy artillery already, that's not going to bode well for Noble."
"He's going to have to dig down deep to find the strength to fight past his exhaustion and pain."
"Real deep," Alan mused.
Phaser continued the assault on Noble, pelting him with kick after kick until he dragged Noble off of the mat and pushed him into the corner. He kicked Noble in the chest, then the ribs, then each of his legs until Noble dropped to both knees.
"Phaser has got him on the ropes... literally!" Alan roared.
"You are so corny."
"I've got to get my jokes in. Contact states it."
"Doesn't your contract also stipulate you actually be knowledgable about wrestling?"
"I don't think so," Alan retorted. "I should get that thing looked at."
Phaser backed up a few steps and then went for another superkick only for Noble to catch it at the last second. Phaser was surprised, but not for long as Noble yanked Phaser towards him and lifted him into the air before dropping him face first into the nearby top turnbuckle.
"And just like that, Noble doing something that could get him back into this match," Michael noted.
"Desperation move for sure," Alan responded.
"Noble can't allow himself to get too far behind in this match. If he just continues to let Phaser pick him apart, he's never going to be able to drag himself out of that hole."
"Talking about dragging themselves out of holes--"
"No one cares, Alan."
Phaser stumbled backwards from the top turnbuckle shot and Noble caught him with a Bridging German Suplex.
"Noble almost caught Phaser completely off guard there and was that close to picking up the victory!" Michael roared.
"Almost isn't the victory."
"That's why it's called almost."
"I know. I'm just clarifying it."
Noble rolled away from Phaser and fights to catch his breath, still reeling from the match he had earlier in the evening and the lack of time he had in between them. He grabbed the middle rope and started pulling himself up as Phaser began to show signs of life. Noble caught him from behind with a running bulldog before he hopped onto the top rope and connected with a 450 Splash. He then went for the cover once again.
"And once again, Noble trying to put this match away and just not able to keep Phaser down!" Michael roared.
"He's going to need a lot more than that to advance to the Finals. Phaser has had a chance to recover, unlike Noble, and thus is the fresher of the two."
"Still, if Noble can keep Phaser where he wants him, then this match will be over before we know it."
"Yeah, yeah. Whatever big man."
Noble made his way to his feet and drug Phaser up as well. He then whipped him into the ropes, but Phaser reverses it and sent Noble into the ropes instead. Phaser then drilled Noble in the midsection with a stiff kick that sent Noble crashing to his knees. Phaser pelted him with fist after fist, wearing down the veteran.
"Each shot more vicious than the last!" Alan yelled. "This is why Phaser is going to be your next Five*Star Champion!"
"Phaser still has a long way to go to making that dream a reality."
"Telling you. Mark it. Put money on it."
"The last time you told fans to put money on something, it was a donkey race and there was a class action suit against the company."
"You're not supposed to talk about that! Client/Attorney Privileges!"
"I'm not your attorney, you idiot!"
Phaser then bounced off the ropes and connected with a dropkick to the back of Noble's skull. Noble fell face first before Phaser rolled him over and went for the pin.
"Another close call for Noble," Michael noted.
"Super close. I'm not positive this match should be continuing actually!"
"Are you the ref?"
"Then shut up and call the damn match," Michael responded.
Phaser made his to the top rope and watched as Noble slowly made his way up to his feet, in a world of hurt. David turned to Phaser and is unable to move quickly enough before being nailed with a spear from the top rope!
"Oh, that's it!" Alan roared. "Match over! Ring the bell!"
"Seriously, I'm going to chop you in the throat if you don't knock it off."
"You couldn't chop a monkey in the th-- UCH!" he started.
"water," Alan whispered.
Noble went down, clutching his ribs while Phaser continued his assault with a flurry of snap kicks to the torso of his opponent. Noble, needing reprieve from the attack, quickly rolled out of the ring, grabbing at his ribs in the process.
"Look at that! Noble is running away!" Alan roared with laughter.
"Do you want to get chopped in the throat again?"
"No, please, no."
"Then shut it and call the match down the middle."
Phaser then bounced off the ropes and connected with a suicide dive on Noble, sending him careening into the steel barricade.
Phaser quickly bounced back up to his feet and began drilling Noble's head repeatedly into the barricade before lifting him up and dropping him ribs first onto the steel.
"Phaser is picking up the intensity here, definitely sensing blood in the water, and attacking like a shark," Michael noted.
"A gold wearing shark."
"He doesn't have any gold."
"Yet! That's the point of all this! He's got this one in the bag."
"You are seriously an idiot.
Noble cried out in pain and laid there while Phaser hopped onto the barricade before running full speed at him and nailing him with a front flip leg drop across his lower back.
"AHHHHHHH!" Noble cried out as he felt the pain reveberate throughout his body.
"And Noble is having a difficult time now with Phaser's nonstop attack on him," Alan mentioned.
"David might have a cracked rib after that move from Phaser. If so, that is going to severely limit Noble's ability to attack in this match."
"Might as well just give it up now," Alan responded.
"I don't think that's going to happen, but feel free to go suggest it to Noble and see what he thinks."
"Nah, I'm good."
Noble fell over the barricade and into the fans as Phaser rolled back into the ring to break the count and then rolled back out to continue his attack. He used the barricade to slingshot himself over into the crowd and nails a Senton onto Noble in the process.
"Phaser is refusing to slow down at all as he is after causing Noble as much pain as possible," Michael noted.
"He's not looking to just win the match, but looking to end Noble's career in IGS as well. Amazing!"
David writhes in pain as Phaser grabbed him and whipped him back first into the barricade. Noble collapsed into a heap as he is in a world of pain. Phaser wasted no time though as he ran full speed at him and drove the toe of his shoe into Noble's chest.
"And the fans making it clear to Phaser their feelings on what he is doing to Noble," Michael remarked.
"The fans are idiots. They cheer for this fool when they should be cheering for Phaser."
"The fans want people who respect them, not people who disrespect and disregard them."
"Then they're idiots!" Alan roared back.
Phaser then grabbed Noble and threw him over the barricade and back into the ring. Noble desperately tried to fight his way up to his feet, but was met with a stiff kick to the midsection from Phaser which is followed up with a Fisherman's DDT. Noble, sprawled out in the middle of the ring, is then flipped over and Phaser goes for the cover again.
"Another near fall there!" Michael roared.
"I think that was a three count. Does this referee know how to count?"
"See, there was this time--"
Phaser glared at the referee and tells him next time better be a three count. He then mounted Noble and began pelting him with a series of fists and slaps.
"And Phaser is RELENTLESS in his attack against Noble," Michael noted.
"I wonder if Noble owes him money."
"You know, like a pimp slaps his hoes around to get his money from them."
"Do you owe a pimp money? Is that what you're trying to tell us?"
"I mean, can I borrow twenty bucks?" Alan asked.
Phaser grabbed Noble and whipped him into the ropes before dropping him with a high knee to the chest that sent David back onto the mat.
"There is no stopping Phaser!" Alan roared.
"It sure seems that way."
Phaser quickly dropped repeated elbows across the rib cage of his opponent before running off the ropes, hopping onto the second rope and connecting with a moonsault across the exposed torso of Noble.
"Phaser determined to destroy the ribcage of Noble," Michael noted.
"For someone like Noble, that could be the end of it all."
"It really could be."
"See? I can add something useful."
"From time to time," Michael sighed.
He then went for the cover again.
Phaser immediately popped up and started yelling at the referee.
"Are you an idiot?! Are you blind?! Do you not know how to COUNT?! That was THREE! Get your head out of your ass!"
"Whoa, Phaser has just snapped!" Michael roared.
"He's tired of this nonsense. This match should be over by now!"
"Except for the fact that Noble keeps kicking out of the pin."
"That is beside the point!"
"Is it?" Michael asked rhetorically.
With Phaser distracted, Noble came up behind him on his knees and went for a quick roll up!
"Noble almost caught Phaser off guard there!" Michael roared.
"What? How do you even figure?"
"Waited till his back was to him. Noble is a disgrace."
"You're a fool."
Noble slowly made his way up to his feet only to be met by a clothesline from a pissed off Phaser. Noble went down in a heap as Phaser starts stomping away at Noble, each kick fiercer then the last. The referee warns him and Phaser starts going off on the referee again.
"I will do WHAT I want WHEN I want it!" Phaser roared at the referee.
"Phaser would do well to keep his focus on this match before he disqualifies himself," Michael remarked.
"If he does that, these fans will revolt!"
"I don't think that will be the case."
"You never know, it might!"
Phaser then turned his attention back to Noble, who was pulling himself up using the ropes. Phaser ran at Noble only for David to fall down, grabbing the top rope in the process and sent Phaser over the top rope.
"And Noble with another desperation move," Michael noted.
"Exactly. He REEKS of desperation!" Alan responded.
"If anyone here reeks of it, it's you. When's the last time you slept a woman?"
"That you didn't pay for, I mean."
"I, um, give me a moment."
Noble remained down on the mat as Phaser slowly made his way up to his feet. David grabbed the ropes and pulled himself up, holding himself gingerly. He then looked at Phaser and ran off the ropes before nailing a corkscrew plancha onto the unsuspecting Phaser.
"What is he doing?!" Alan roared. "He's a flipping idiot!"
"Noble giving everything he can to keep Phaser down at this point!"
"Noble is going to kill himself. Actually, on second thought, keep doing that Noble!"
"You are a very sick person."
Both men crashed onto the mat hard, but Noble is determined as he pulled himself up using the barricade. He snapped his foot across Phaser's face before pulling him up and whipping him face first into the ring post.
"Noble refusing to go down without a fight at the very least!" Michael roared.
"Cheating his way there."
"Once again, NOT illegal. Can you try and learn what we're watching here?"
"What's the point of that?!"
Noble grabbed Phaser, who was slumped against the ring post and smashed his head into the ring post again before he pulled him away and drilled him back first into the side of the ring.
"Noble is amping up his attack here, going for moves designed to slow his opponent down," Michael remarked.
"Going to leave Phaser paralyzed. What a beast!"
"Phaser was doing the same thing to Noble..."
"Are you sure? I mean, how do we know that actually happened?"
Phaser groaned in pain as Noble then whipped him back first into the barricade. With Noble gaining momentum, David hopped onto the ring apron and then springboarded off the middle rope before connecting with a moonsault onto the prone Phaser!
"And the fans reacting quite positively to everything Noble is pulling out here!" Michael roared.
"That's because they're idiots. They love to eat this shit up."
"Yes, they love watching bad guys get what they deserve."
"Phaser is not the bad guy! He's our hero!"
"Just go to sleep."
Noble bumped fists with a few of the fans at ringside before he grabbed Phaser and rolled him back into the ring. Noble slid under the bottom rope and watched as Phaser attempted to pull himself back up to his feet. Noble grabbed him from behind before he connected with a hip toss. With Phaser sitting on the ground dazed, Noble bounced off the ropes and connected with a Shining Wizard. He then went for the pin!
"Noble finding some momentum here," Michael stated.
"Momentary momentum," Alan corrected.
"Well, that remains to be seen."
"No, I talked to a psychic about four rows in. She guaranteed it."
"How much money did you give her?"
"That's not important."
Noble made his way back up to his feet and dragged Phaser up with him. He whipped Phaser into the nearby corner and ran after him only for Phaser to jump over him. Noble quickly changed plans and ran up the ropes before he connected with another moonsault onto Phaser. Phaser though managed to roll through it and got the leg up for a pin.
"Oh get off it REF!" Alan screamed.
"No, that was clearly a two count. A good counter for Phaser though."
"A good counter? A great counter! You get off it too!"
"Man, I wish you would fall in a ditch and never get out."
Both men scrambled to their feet with Phaser catching him with a series of kicks to the midsection before knocking Noble down with an enziguri.
"And down goes Noble, all of the momentum he had just evaporating into thin air," Michael noted.
"Just like I said."
"I thought it was a psychic?"
"Well, it was!"
Phaser popped up to his feet and roared as the crowd booed him.
He looked down at Noble, dragged his face up and smacked him as hard as he could.
Phaser strutted around the ring, rather proud of himself. He walked back over to David and stomped the back of his skull repeatedly, each shot heavier than the last.
"Sheer brutality on display here form Phaser!" Michael roared.
"Exactly. Put this bitch out to pasture."
"Go in there and say that to Noble."
"Nah, I'm good. I like my seat right here."
Phaser then lifted Noble off of the mat, smacked him again before he connected with a Jumping Stunner. He then went for the cover!
"The Phase Out!" Michael screamed. "This could be the end for Noble!"
"Could be?! It most definitely is!"
"NOBLE KICKS OUT! NOBLE KICKS OUT!" Michael roared.
"You've GOT to be kidding me!"
"He had to reach deep down, but he is not dead yet!"
"That referee needs to go back into training."
"I think that referee is just fine. You shut it and watch this match."
Phaser yelled at the referee, pushing him into the corner in the process.
"Where the FUCK did you learn how to count?! You based fool. ONE! TWO! THREE! RING THE FUCKING BELL! Or are you too dense to get that through your thick skull?!" Phaser yelled at the referee.
The referee warned him, but Phaser continued to go off on him.
"You're going to warn me? You're a fucking IDIOT! This match should be over!"
The referee then pushed Phaser away from him, which set Phaser off. He walked back to the referee and put his finger in his face once again which caused the referee to push him once again. Phaser was then caught off guard when Noble pulled him down and went for the cover!
"That CHEATER!" Alan raged. "Taking advantage of Phaser not paying attention as he aired his grievances!"
"Phaser should be focusing on the match, not the referee who is just doing his job!"
"Oh, of course you side with Noble! Of course you do!"
"This is about Phaser losing focus!"
Phaser struck Noble over and over again with fists as he made his way to his feet and then pushed him into the ropes. He then whipped him across the ring only for Noble to come back flying at him and nailed him with a flying cross body.
"Noble is REFUSING to die!" Michael roared.
"I'm going to be sick."
"As is the norm for you."
"I'm going to purposely puke on you."
"Yeah, watch what happens if you try that out."
Noble then kipped up and caught Phaser with a back body drop. Phaser rushed back up to his feet, but Noble caught him with a body-to-body suplex! Phaser kept fighting through the pain, the anger getting to him, and as he made his way to his feet and turned to Noble, he was met flush in the jaw with a superkick!
"Noble digging DEEP to connect with that super kick!" Michael roared.
"Where the HELL did that come from?!" Alan screamed back.
"These fans are powering Noble to keep fighting even when it looks like he has nothing left!"
"Phaser has handed Noble his ass this match! This is impossible!"
"Phaser has kept the action largely one sided this match and has shown that he can hang with the best, but he's gotta stay focused on the task at hand!"
"Oh suck it."
Noble collapsed to one knee, the beating of two matches, so close in succession getting the better of him. He crawled over and pinned Phaser.
"Noble taking FAR too long to go for that cover, the exhaustion setting into his bones," Michael noted.
"See? He's not perfect! Noble is far from perfect!"
"No one called him perfect."
"I see the way you lust over him."
"You are flat out insane."
Noble slowly made his way up to his feet and dragged Phaser up with him, whipping him into the ropes, and nailing him with a hurricanrana, hooking the legs in the process.
"Once again, Noble not able to put away Phaser!" Michael roared. "Noble trying any and everything to end this match right now."
"Desperation. Smell that? He reeks of it."
"You are a bloody fool, you know that? You reek of desperation which is why you haven't been laid in six months."
"Ah, Damian," Alan moaned.
"You slept with a guy?"
"That's a gender neutral name!"
"No, it's not. Nowhere close."
Noble made his way up to his feet once again, ran off the ropes, leapt onto the middle rope and connected with a springboard shooting star press on Phaser, hooking the leg once again for the cover!
"Phaser is REFUSING to go down! He is taking everything Noble is dishing out and is still alive in this match!" Michael roared.
"See? Phaser has got this match in hand."
"I mean, if you ignore the fact that Noble has been on the attack nonstop here."
"That explains a lot actually."
Noble laid on his back, clearly winded, with exhaustion dripping off his forehead in the form of beads of sweat. Noble slowly sat up, grabbing at his ribs in the process, and somehow made it to his feet once again. He climbed up to the top rope, but was too slow as Phaser managed to get his wind back as he bounced up the turnbuckle and nailed him with an enziguri!
"Phaser playing opossum there on Noble!" Alan roared.
"Noble far too slow there. He is nearly dead."
"That would be great, wouldn't it?"
"If Noble just died in the ring!"
"You're a sick human being."
Noble fell off the top rope and landed on his back as Phaser then went for the cover.
"And Noble isn't done yet!" Michael roared.
"Oh, it's about to be over. I promise you that much."
"When the bell rings then it will be over."
"I'm going to ring a bell on your noggin."
Phaser made his way up to his feet and glared at the referee in the process. He then climbed up to the top rope and connected with a front flip leg drop off the top rope! He then went for the cover on Noble.
"Noble STILL fighting!" Michael roared.
"Is this guy an idiot? What the hell is wrong with him?"
"He came here WANTING that 5*Star Championship and his opportunity is RIGHT there!"
"Like I said, what the hell is wrong with him?!
Phaser sat up and looked exasperated at the fact that Noble refused to stay down. He made his way up to his feet and dragged Noble up with him. He drilled Noble with a few fists to the jaw and then bounced off the ropes only for David to lift him up in the air and nail him with a sit out powerbomb.
"WHOA! Noble out of NOWHERE! And almost got the pinfall!" Noble roared!
"Where did that come from?! That must be illegal!"
"Can we make your face illegal?"
"It is indeed too illegal to look this pretty."
"Excuse me while I try to not choke and die on my water," Michael sighed.
Noble struggled back up to his feet and made his way over to the nearby turnbuckle. He slowly climbed to the top rope, each move more painful than the last. As he stood on the top rope, Phaser fought his way up and slammed himself into the ropes, causing Noble to crotch himself.
"That's my boy!" Alan roared.
"An absolutely DISGUSTING move!"
"Hey, whatever he needs to do to win this match!"
"He may have taken the wind out of Noble's kite after that."
"Heh, probably more than that!"
David groaned in pain as Phaser made his way up the turnbuckle and placed Noble in a front face lock, looking to connect with a superplex. Noble managed to block him though and Phaser proceeded to wail away at him with a series of fists to his kidneys.
"Noble refusing to give up, knowing that this superplex could spell the end for him," Michael noted.
"Fruitless. This match is going to end right here, right now!"
"We shall see."
"You're right. And I'm going to rub it ALL over your face."
Phaser then went again for the superplex, but Noble managed to block it again. David then slammed his fist repeatedly into the jaw of Phaser, causing his opponent to almost fall, but he grabbed onto the ropes at the last moment. David then slammed his head repeatedly into Phaser's, finally knocking him off the top rope, back first onto the mat. Noble then slowly stood up and then connected with the Corkscrew Shooting Star Press!
"LEAP OF FAITH! LEAP OF FAITH!" Michael roared.
"You said it would be over right here and right now! You just didn't know HOW right you were!"
"I hate you."
Noble rolled off of Phaser in a world of pain, but slowly draped his arm across Phaser's chest.
"Your winner, and moving onto the finals of the Five Star Tournament... DAVID! NOBLE!" Peter Greenberg announced to the crowd.
"Noble has done it! He will be facing Chris Richards here in a just a matter of moments for the Five Star Championship!"
"I have no idea what just happened," Alan moaned.
"An amazing match that tested both men, but at the end of the day, one of them had to walk out the victor."
"The only satisfaction I'll get is knowing that Noble is absolutely done for and there's no way he'll get the victory next."
"As he'll be facing Chris Richards."
"Ugh, shoot me now," Alan sighed.
"If only I could."
Noble slowly sat up in the corner, exhausted and drained. "Believer" by Imagine Dragons played behind him, but he could care less as he pulled himself up using the ropes. He grabbed at the ropes and walked across the ring as he pointed to the backstage area.
"Let's do this! Let's get this show over!" Noble roared while grabbing his ribs. He knew he was in no place to wrestle again, but he didn't care. Banjos rang out and kick drums thumped in response to his demand.. but he was ready for whatever was about to come next.
“It seems as though this is going down right now, folks! We need to take a brief break to commercial, but when we return we’ll have David Noble facing off with Chris Richards for the IGS Five Star Championship!”
As the scene faded Richards stepped through the curtain and a familiar chant could be heard as the audio feed trailed away.
He’s from Philly…
“The following contest is set for one fall!”
Noble and Richards stood in the the center of the ring as the live feed returned. The crowd’s cheers were split in two as Decker began to speak.
“We are back live at the Kingdom Coliseum with the final matchup in what has been a very interesting tournament thus far.” Decker began, recapping the night’s events as the referee discussed the rules with the two competitors. “We’ve seen quick pins, technical displays, and some monumental struggles this evening and whether you’re here in Allentown with us or watching at home, I hope you’ve enjoyed this tournament as thoroughly as I have. What do you say, Alan?”
“I’m just excited we’re getting into the end here, Phaser was clearly robbed by Noble. It should be The Red Eagle with the title opportunity right now!”
“There is just no end, is there…”
“And here we go! No introductions needed!” Bellowed Decker as the two men began to circle clockwise around the ring, Noble leaning slightly and still clutching his ribs.
Richards made the first move to lock up, Noble accepted. The two struggled for position; Richards tried to transition into a top wrist lock, but Noble pushed away. The two circled, now counterclockwise. Noble went for the collar and elbow but Richards greeted him with a knee into the lower abdomen. Noble grimaced and fell to a knee, holding onto his side, his breathing was getting heavier.
“Richards, clearly the more rested of the two, taking advantage of the injured ribs courtesy of Phaser in that semi-final matchup.”
“Now, THAT’s what I’m talking about, Michael! You gotta place your shots where they count!” McTaggart blurted out in an unconventional show of support for Chris Richards.
Richards took Noble’s head in one hand and the waist of his tights in the other. The crowd braced themselves for the impact they knew was to come as Richards drove another knee into the ribs of the downed David Noble. Noble then collapsed to the mat and Richards rolled him over into a pinfall attempt.
“Noble just able to get that shoulder up, but it looks like the damaged ribs took a lot of strength out of that kick out.” Decker called.
Richards stood and brought Noble with him. He took him by the wrist and went for an Irish Whip into the corner, but Noble managed to reverse.. falling to the mat and Richards hit the turnbuckle hard. Noble grabbed a hold of the ropes and pulled himself to his feet. Richards was ready as Noble walked into a boot to the mid-section.
“Hard front kick from Richards as Noble is unable to capitalize on that reversal.” Decker stated matter-of-factly.
Richards tied Noble up and spun him into the corner. The young GFW Dojo graduated hopped to the middle and the crowd was ready to count along as Richards laid in forearms to the top of David Nobles skull…
As the eighth forearm came down Noble snapped to life, lifting the former all american linebacker into the sky.. Noble took a few steps and collapsed backward sending Richards’ face into the top turnbuckle.
“Desperation move there, Alan!” Decker barked, “but will he be about to turn this fight around!?”
Noble was suddenly on his feet as the adrenaline began dulling the pain in his side and brought the energy back to his legs. The crowd went wild as Noble backed up, he begged Richards to stand. Richards got to his feet slowly and began to turn around….
“WHAT A SUPERKICK!” Decker exclaimed. “Richards may be OUT!”
Noble pulled Richards to the center of the ring and pointed a finger in the air, the crowd was torn, they didn’t know who to cheer. Noble made a slow ascent to the top turnbuckle, still clutching at his side. He settled into an awkward crouch as the crowd’s volume increased. As Noble lifted his head to get a bearing on his target, his eyes widened, Richards wasn’t on the ground, he was in his face.
“Richards is up! And, OH MY, what a maneuver that was!” Decker bellowed as Richards threw Noble across the ring.
David Noble let out a pain filled gasp as hit slammed to the mat. Richards lifted his arms into the air and the crowd responded with a loud cheer.
“I hate to say this, but I think Richards could win this match, Michael.” McTaggart shouted out over the noise of the crowd.
“I’m not one to count David Noble out of a fight, Alan,” Decker responded, “And as they say, anything can happen inside that squared circle.”
Noble rolled back to his stomach as Richards made his way across the ring. Richards went for Noble’s arms looking to hook him for the Tiger Suplex, but Noble quickly spun himself, rolling Richards into a small package.
“A quick roll up attempt by Noble, unsuccessful, as Richards kicks out after only 1!” Decker called.
Noble climbed to a knee as Richards got to his feet. Richards threw another forearm to Noble’s head.
Richards threw one more as Noble tried to stand.
Richards threw a third but Noble blocked and gave the younger man a hearty shove followed up with a drop kick sending Richards stumbling backward and to the mat.
“Knocked right on his keister was Richards!” Decker called with a smile. “Like I said, never count David Noble out, Alan, ha-ha.”
Noble was up in a blink, he gave himself a forearm to the side to kick the adrenaline up as Richards regained a vertical base. Noble took off and delivered a lariat to Richards against the ropes, sending him over the top and to the floor. Noble held his arms out wide as the crowd let out a cheer.. He was going to fly!
Noble ran to the ropes and dove over the top, landing on Richards shoulders and driving the young man to the floor. Noble hopped up and the crowd got behind him.
Noble lifted Richards up and rolled him into the ring. He climbed to the apron and pointed to the sky.
YOU CAN DO IT*CLAP CLAP**CLAP CLAP CLAP*
Noble’s eyes were determined as he climbed to the top. He perched himself carefully and stood. Richards was down as David Noble lept into the air..
“Here we go! Frog Splash coming up! OH MY WORD!”
As Noble connected, he bounced into the air and grabbed at his ribs. He landed hard on his back, out of breath.
“Did you see that, Alan!” Decker yelled with concern, “he may have just severely damaged those ribs!”
“That’s what you get when you go for a move like that! Especially when you’re already hurt!”
The referee checked on Richards, he seemed to be out. He then asked Noble, “do you want to continue?!” Noble nodded, but as he tried to sit up he grimaced and lay back.
The ref, unsure of what else to do, began a count…
“The referee is counting here… uhm, I believe the rules of this tournament state we must have a winner..” Decker called out.
Noble rolled to his left. He crawled forward and collapsed with an arm over Richards. The ref dropped down…
The crowd erupted as the ref’s hand hit the mat. The erupted even more as Richards’ legs kicked up and Noble rolled off.
“HE DID IT!” Decker shouted out. “David Noble has conquered the odds and captured the IGS Five Star Championship and he went through hell to do it!”
“I don’t know, Michael… That looked like a two count to me!” Alan responded.
Richards stood as the bell rang and looked at the referee. He held two fingers up but the ref shook his head and walked to the ropes and asked for the title.
“The referee is asking for the title it seems, and we clearly heard the bell, Alan.. David Noble IS your new IGS Five Star Champion!”
As Noble lay on the mat, he winced in pain as he was handed his new title. Richards looked confused. He again told the referee once more his shoulder was up.
"Richards now is voicing his opinion on the decision here, and it looks as though we have a replay here..."
The tron came to life with a different angle of the final count of the match's pinfall. As the third count came to the mat, Richards' shoulder could be seen coming up just before the referee's hand hit the canvas.
"Well folks, the slow motion replay is telling a different story here as you can see the shoulder of Chris Richards came up from the mat before the count of three."
"It's that referee Michael, I think he might be dirty!"
"I think the referee did a fine job there, he simply made a mistake. And now it looks as though our Senior Referee, Vern Halloway, is headed towards the ring. Looks like he and Graham Jones are going to have a conversation."
As the moments passed, David Noble slowly gathered himself from the mat.. Chris Richards stood in the corner awaiting the decision.. and the crowd were split in there chanting as the two referees argued their points of view.
Noble Won It
He's From Philly
Finally the deliberation was done, and Peter Greenberg stood at ringside as Vern Halloway hopped from the ring to deliver the answer the crowd.. nay.. the fans both in the building and at home were waiting to hear.
"Ladies and Gentlemen.. The rules of this tournament, as set out by General Manager, John Ackerman, were that we would have a definiative decision by referee throughout tonight's tournament."
"And in keeping with this, seeing as how the shoulder of Chris Richards came off the mat before the count of three.. Vern Halloway, the IGS Senior Referee.. has declared the match shall CONTINUE!"
"Well there you are folks, we will keep this going right here live at the Kingdom Coliseum, the senior referee has over ruled the decision and this match will continue."
"Hope Noble has some internal bleeding from those ribs..." Alan said with mild disgust.
"Will you stop.."
The bell rang once more as David Noble, still bent forward and clutching his side, began to once again circle the ring with Chris Richards. Richards was now the aggressor as he took a chance with a single leg takedown. Noble managed to keep his balance, but Richards quickly followed up with a Leg Whip which sent David Noble up, over, and down to the mat. Richards nipped up, half the crowd went wild as the other half chanted for Noble to get back into the contest.
You Can Do ItHe’s From Philly
The chants of the crowd overlapped at times as the noise level inside the coliseum gradually reached damaging levels. Richards stepped backward into the ropes, as he bounced off he lept into the air and dropped a left knee down on Noble’s side.
“Point of the knee straight into the ribcage of David Noble! How much more abuse can the internal bone and organs of the veteran take.”
“Phaser could’ve ended this one by now, Michael. I don’t think Richards has what it takes to seal the deal.”
“I said earlier in the evening that I’d never count David Noble out when he’s down, but folks, I’ll have to admit it is looking fairly promising for Chris Richards at moment.”
Richards bounced off the ropes once more and lept. But this time, no one was home as Noble managed to roll to his side and the point of Richards knee slammed hard into the canvas. Richards fell to his side, he grabbed his knee and let out a shout of pain.
Noble slowly stood. He backed to the corner and leaned on the turnbuckle as Chris Richards hobbled to his feet…
“SUPERKICK!” Decker yelled.
“Oh No!” McTaggart said with some semblance of sadness.
Noble slammed his fist to the mat as he lifted himself up from the canvas. Richards was still down. Noble pointed to the sky for yet another time, the crowd cried out in response…
“Noble signalling it’s time to once more go upstairs!” Decker called, “Very high risk maneuver considering the amount of punishment those ribs have undergone tonight.”
Noble stepped through the ropes and climbed up one turnbuckle. Then another.. One more.. Richards was there with a forearm to the side of the head. He followed with another. He hooked Noble’s head and tried to lift, but Noble hooked the middle turnbuckle. Richards tried once more but Noble blocked a second time and shoved Richards down to the canvas. He perched at the top and slowly stood in the air..
“This is it! LEAP OF FAITH!” Decker bellowed.
McTaggart sounded panicked, “I can’t believe I’m going to say this, but come on Richards… get up!”
Noble closed his eyes, he winced as he took in a breath.. He lept…
The rest, to David Noble, was a blur.
“Richards with the knees up!”
Chris Richards avoided this particular fate, raising his knees at the last possible moment, sending streaks of pain through the battered ribcage of David Noble. Noble collapsed on the mat, his breathing shallow and eyes fluttering. Richards clammored to his feet, his left knee twinged as he put weight on it. He lifted Noble and hooked his arms..
“Richards not bothering with a cover, he’s looking to end this once and for all, Alan..”
“That damned Tiger Suplex! I wanted him to beat Noble not break his neck!”
Up and over Noble went, crashing down on his shoulders and neck. Richards made the bridge.
The crowd came alive as Noble managed to hold on and stay in it. Richards looked shocked as he looked to the referee who held up two fingers. Richards stood once more and looked down, a certain respect in his eyes for David Noble, he bent forward and hooked the arms once more.. He lifted Noble from the canvas into the air and dropped to the mat once more, Nobles neck and shoulders taking even more impact.
“Tiger Suplex with a dead lift off the mat!” Decker called out in awe.
Chris Richards held the bridge a moment or two after the three count. Just to make sure. When the referee gave the signal..
Richards released his bridge and fell backward on the mat, his breathing heavy. Noble looked to be unconscious as the referee retrieved the Five Star Championship from ringside and Peter Greenberg entered the ring.
“Your Winner… and NEW FIVE STAR CHAMPION..”
Chris Richards sat up and took the belt from the referee.
Richards climbed to his feet, and the referee raised his wrist in the air. The crowd cheered and as banjos and bass drum begin to fade in over the public address a familiar chant began to rain down.
He’s From PhillyClap Clap - Clap Clap Clap
As Richards made his way up the ramp and through the curtain and the chant was slowly replaced with a somewhat hushed audience. The camera turned to the ring, where David Noble was still lying.
David was wracked with pain, unimaginable pain. He laid on the mat, certain his ribs were cracked or broken. It hurt to breathe. Hell, it hurt to move. More importantly though, his heart hurt. He had lost the match, his first time losing in IGS. He knew he had built in excuses. No rest between his previous match and this match meant he had wrestled for nearly an hour uninterrupted against two different opponents. He had left the first match definitively injured and that had only worsen in the Finals.
He could care less. He had lost and that's all that stuck in his mind. He had let himself down, let MacKenzie down, let these fans down.
Slowly he crawled to his knees and coughed into his hand. He saw the blood in the palm, congealed and mocking him. He slowly pulled himself up using the ropes and looked out at the fans who were cheering him on. He saw Richards disappear into the back with the title that he was certain he'd be hoisting out of the ring on this evening. Alas, it was not meant to be. He knew the journey he had to go on now. He had to go after that title and make it his.
He began to move towards the ring apron, clutching his ribs, and waved out to the fans, thanking them for cheering him on. He felt for them. He knew his fans were disappointed in him losing.
Then the lights went out. The coliseum was covered in darkness and everyone felt a slight panic in their chest, unsure of what exactly was going on. Did someone forget to pay the bill? Did a transformer blow?
There was darkness for thirty seconds.
Then the lights flickered back on. Noble stood in the middle of the ring, confused, and then he realized he was no longer alone in the ring. As David laid eyes on the individual, a behemoth at nearly seven feet tall, wearing black tights, a black long sleeve shirt, black gloves, and a black ski mask with holes cut out for his eyes, he felt the back of his throat tighten.
He thought of the note.
Before he could even move, the man wrapped his hand around Noble's neck and hoisted him into the air before slamming him down to the mat with sickening crunch. The fans could only look on in horror.
Then the lights went dark again. This time for ten seconds.
When they came back on, Noble was pulling himself back up to his feet. He turned, looking for the masked man, only to find him too late. The man had made it to a corner and was now running full speed at Noble before he connected with a massive boot to Noble's face that flipped him inside out. Noble laid on the mat in a world of pain.
Then the lights went dark again. This time they were out for twenty seconds.
Suddenly, they shot back on and as they did, the fans saw Noble being launched into the ropes, hoisted in the air and thrown down onto the mat into a sit out power bomb that shook the entire ring and sent a loud crash through the arena. The lights then shut off again.
A blue light then focused on the masked man as he made his way back up to his feet, dragged Noble with him, and lifted him up over his head before throwing him out of the ring and crashing into the barricade. The blue light lingered on the masked man for a moment before it shut off.
The coliseum was shrouded in darkness for sixty seconds. When the lights turned back on, Noble was in the middle of the ring, now a bloodied mess. He was passed out, laid out, and unaware of what had just happened to him.
The tron lit up and words began to appear in white on the black background.
"You've met my messenger. He has cleared the way for me. I am coming."
Those words lingered as everything faded to black with Noble still unconscious.
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