Indie wrestling news: New tag team champions crowned and heel turn at NEW “YEAR TWO”
New Evolution Wrestling's "Year Two" anniversary show was the organization's way of celebrating two very successful years in St. John's -- and the CLB Armoury was filled with adoring fans who were ready to celebrate with them, adding another notch to NEW's "full house" ledger.
The main card kicked off with the much-anticipated Six-Man Tag Match between The Family Bizniz and the reigning tag team champions “Hellraiser” Justin Lock and Psycho Mitch, with their third man “Dirty” Don Martini.
This match was a culmination of weeks of building tension from several different directions. First, almost immediately after Martini made his NEW debut, Family Bizniz patriarch Jon Biz offered a $25,000 bounty on Martini’s head payable to whoever would take Martini out.
Additionally, NEW Executive Producer Mike Barrington had long grown weary of the underhand tactics often employed by The Family Bizniz—Biz especially—to the point that he created this match as a way to get Biz into the ring and receive his comeuppance.
Despite Biz’s protestations, legal advice and contractual consultations, there was no getting out of this for him. In many ways and on both sides, this match was personal.
The first team out was The Family Bizniz—Blake Maxwell, Buck Gotch and manager-turned-wrestler Jon Biz—as challengers for the title. They were met with boos and jeers as they sauntered around the ring. Next came Martini, who was met with a large pop. Then came the defending champions Lock and Mitch to another pop.
When the bell rang, Martini and Maxwell begin the match. Martini took control early in the match until several minutes later when he miscalculated and ran head first into a turnbuckle.
Capitalizing on this, Maxwell tagged in the Biz’s enforcer Gotch. Martini made it to his corner and tagged in Psycho Mitch, leaving the two monsters in the middle of the ring, They tried to gain momentum over the other but it was ultimately like watching an unstoppable force meet an immovable object and no ground was gained by either. Maxwell was tagged back in for Family Bizniz and Justin Lock entered the ring for the first time. Lock pummeled Maxwell for a while, then Martini tagged in and they double-team Maxwell to the mat, and Martini covered Maxwell while Lock exited the ring. The count didn’t begin, however, as the referee was distracted by Gotch trying to enter the ring.
Lock returned to the ring and Gotch was tagged in by Maxwell. At this point, Gotch took control of the match, taking Lock down. Jon Biz finally tagged in for the first time and began giving Lock chops in the corner. While the ref tried to keep Mitch and Martini from getting involved, the Family Bizniz ganged up on Lock in the corner, shifting the tide of the fight further in their favour. Maxwell tagged back in, but Lock managed to tag in Martini, and Gotch steps in to replace Maxwell.
Martini attempted to get the much larger Gotch down but his attacks were ineffective, although ten headbutts to the chest in rapid succession did hobble Gotch for a moment. Dizzied by this, Martini attempted a powerbomb on Gotch but couldn’t lift him and Gotch recovered and took Martini down and pinned him.
Lock broke up the pin and then chaos reigned with everyone fighting inside and outside the ring, except for Jon Biz who did his best to stay out of the fracas as much as possible. Then, Martini went down inside the ring, and Biz grabbed his briefcase to use as a weapon. Before he was able to however, Psycho Mitch entered the ring looking like he was about to save Martini—but instead, he put Martini down for the count and tossed Biz on top of Martini’s prone body and the referee made the three-count, earning the NEW tag team titles for the Family Bizniz and $25,000 for Psycho Mitch.
Winners via pinfall: The Family Bizniz (New NEW Tag Team Champions).
The audience was stunned and Lock was dumbfounded by the betrayal. Lock confronted Psycho Mitch in the center of the ring, and the Family Bizniz goaded Lock into making a move. Lock decided to attack them all, but it was a four-on-one fight and he was easily overpowered. The Family Bizniz—including Psycho Mitch--stood tall, and then pulverized executive producer Mike Barrington in the ring, with Jon Biz dealing the final blow with a briefcase to the head of the exec producer.
After the match, when asked for a comment, Lock said:
“I've won and lost several championships since I've been in this business, but when your tag team partner and friend betrays you like what happened to me last night... that's a whole new ball game. Mark my words, there will be hell to pay! Psycho Mitch will get what's coming to him.”
Given the build-up and emotional investment, I wasn’t expecting this match to be first up on the card. The quality of the storytelling in this match was high, which set the bar for the remainder of the night.
Also, I have to really commend the booking on this match—by making the payoff of this arc the beginning of a potential new arc shows the level of planning and forethought that the NEW Booking and Creative Team uses. The audience was as emotionally affected by Psycho Mitch’s betrayal as Justin Lock was, and it will be interesting to see the direction this goes in.
Also, while one might enjoy watching a heel like Jon Biz getting his licks in the ring for his shady, underhanded tactics, I’m actually glad the won his first-ever match—and got the pin—because this adds another layer to an already-compelling villain. Meanwhile, as the Family Bizniz were already the reigning tag team champions with another local wrestling promotion (Cutting Edge Wrestling), Jon Biz has since announced that they would be harmonizing the NEW tag team and CEW East Coast tag team titles and referring to them as the Newfoundland Tag Team Titles.
I’m personally excited to see what this inter-promotional arrangement could lead to in terms of further growth!