Bob Evans, Brad Hollister, Brandon Webb, Brockton, Craig Costa, Devils Reject Brandon Webb, Don Vega, Gregory Edwards, Jason Blade, Ladies Man Gregory Edwards, Marshal McNeil, Matt Magnum, Shane Alden, The Professor, Tito Santana, Top Rope Promotions, TRP, Vain, Vince Beach, Vinnie Marseglia
Top Rope Promotions
Brockton, MA USA VFW
July 18, 2014
This was The Professor’s first TRP show. Quite a positive experience. It is no coincidence that this organization has been in operation since 1981. First rate show. The Professor looks forward to checking out some of TRP’s PAL Hall shows.
Referee: Kevin Quinn
1. Shane Alden v. Vince Beach. W – Alden
Vince Beach came out to the Baywatch Theme Music. The Professor wonders how many of the younger fans got the reference. He’s quite tanned, and was sporting a life ring and a pair of trunks marked “Sink or Swim”. A group of fans chanted “SINK” at different points in the match. The Professor saw a resemblance in Mr. Beach in his sailor hat and sunglasses to the Cartoon Network Series “The Venture Brothers” character “Shore Leave”.
This was a pretty good opener. Beach and Alden were fairly well-matched. There was a lot of camp here from both men which is the way to go to get the crowd going in a first contest. Mr. Beach tried to do a Cannonball off the top rope which missed as Alden got off the mat just in time. The Lifeguard/Model attempted to incorporate his life ring into the action but was stopped by Referee Quinn. Mr. Alden took advantage of the distraction and scored a clean pin.
2. Interstate Championship Match: Craig Costa v. Don Vega. W – Vega (Count Out)
“The Punisher” Don Vega came out with his Puerto Rican flag to quite a few boos as the heel in this match. A large portion of the fans chanted “USA” throughout the match. The Professor laments the state of the American Public Education System. He knows for a fact that they are taught in Six Grade History that Puerto Rico became a U.S. Territory in 1898.
Firefighter Costa was definitely the fan favorite. He’s big, puffed up, and perhaps dangerously tanned. Mr. Costa taunted Don Vega with a series of Body Builder poses. Vega is no small man, and responded by showing his biceps.
The Professor is quite familiar with Don Vega from his work in SPW, where he is a former Champion. He had the feeling that Vega could have ended the match at multiple times if he had chosen to do so. Eventually The “Rican Havoc” outsmarted both Costa and himself. He tricked Mr. Costa into a miss off the top rope, got him outside the ring, and beat him with the PR Flag. Referee Quinn confiscated the flag and the match resulted in a Count Out with Mr. Costa dazed on the floor. Vega got a technical victory, but the belt stayed with Costa due to the Count Out.
The Professor sees a lot in Costa and has to be careful to let his familiarity with Vega cloud his judgement here. He knows Vega and just how dangerous he is. Costa is not champion for nothing. The Professor will have more on these two as the year goes on.
3. Brad Hollister v. Matt Magnum. W – Magnum
Matt Magnum is a current TRP Tag Team Champion. Brad Hollister is an exploding star who holds the prestigious NECW Heavyweight Championship. As expected in a Hollister match, this was a highly technical mat wrestling contest. The Professor felt that Mr. Hollister might have been holding back a bit but again, there’s the familiarity bias to consider. The Professor knows Hollister and his capabilities. This was his first look at Magnum. That being said, these guys put on a clinic that culminated when Magnum had Hollister in a nasty chin lock with pressure on the eyes. Hollister made the right decision and tapped.
4. “Brutal” Bob Evans v. Tito Santana. W – Santana
Tito Santana is a living legend. As expected he got a big reaction from the fans. What was interesting to The Professor is that he came out not as a novelty or nostalgia act, but more humbly – like a regular worker. He gave the fans a real match and it was clear that his focus was on this night, not what happened 30 years ago in the WWF. This was humbling and it showed the character of the man.
Both men are in the later part of their wrestling careers. They gave a match with heart, energy, and humor. Evans is especially funny in the ring, as well as a good technician. Mr. Santana is in decent shape for a man of his vintage and the number of wars he’s been through.
Tito Santana ended the match by rolling Mr. Evans into a Small Package. The appreciative fans chanted “You Still Got it!”. Afterwards Mr. Santana posed for pictures with fans in the ring. He shook every hand extended to him before leaving the room. Class.
5. “The Devil’s Reject” Brandon Webb vs. “The Ladies Man” Gregory Edwards (No Contest followed by a Tag Team Match with Jason Blade and Marshal McNeil). W – Webb & Blade
Gregory Edwards preens and taunts out-of-shape fans better than anyone (maybe not better than sometimes partner Jimmy Preston). He’s a heck of a showman and showed the most humor and wit of the night. He works effectively with Manager McNeil who also posses the same qualities. This match evolved (devolved?) into insanity and was the match of the night in The Professor’s not humble opinion. The video includes a long warmup sequence of brutal fan interaction.
6. “Brockton Street Fight” TRP Heavyweight Championship Match: Vain vs. Vinnie Marseglia. W – Vain
The Professor is quite familiar with Mr. Marseglia, who is one of the best wrestlers in New England. Vain is new to him. Both men put on a heck of a fight with a lot of outside the ring brutality. One particularly interesting item was Vain’s request for a native Brockton Ref. He “found” a guy from “Concessions” who came in and not only took control of the match, he took a beating and gave one himself. Wonder who he is? The video is the best description and worth a view.