What's the story?
EVOLVE, the promotion started by Ring of Honor founder Gabe Sapolsky, celebrates its ten year anniversary next month. To commemorate the occasion, EVOLVE 131 (their events are numbers in the same way UFC numbers theirs) will be a 10th Anniversary Celebration, featuring wrestlers from the promotion's past.
More excitingly, the entire event will be streamed live on the WWE Network.
In case you didn't know...
In the latest WWE NEWS, Gabe Sapolsky, who was also the Vice President of Dragon Gate USA, announced his intention to create a wrestling promotion that placed more emphasis on rules, win-loss records, and could showcase each performer's own individual wrestling styles. Their first show, headlined by a match between Davey Richards and Kota Ibushi, took place on January 29th, 2010.
Starting in 2015, EVOLVE began a working relationship with WWE, providing the larger company a platform to scout talent for their NXT (and, by proxy, their main roster) brand. In 2016, many of the qualifying matches for WWE's Cruiserweight Classic were held during EVOLVE, and footage of those matches could be seen on the shows announcing the tournament's participants and brackets.
Many former EVOLVE performers have gone on to have success in WWE, such as former and current NXT Champions Johnny Gargano and Adam Cole, respectively, and current United States champion Ricochet.
EVOLVE is also the wrestling promotion that serves as the basis for the Viceland docuseries, The Wrestlers.
The heart of the matter
Since EVOLVE has had such an impact on the current state of NXT and WWE, it seems pretty appropriate that an event like this would air on the WWE Network. (H/T to WrestlingInc)
"Evolve was the birthplace for many current WWE and NXT Superstars so it is only fitting that their 10th Anniversary Celebration will be showcased live on WWE Network," - Head of NXT Triple H
Being held on July 13th, in Philadelphia, PA, in the former ECW Arena, the EVOLVE's 10th Anniversary Celebration will feature matches with current and former EVOLVE stars, including an NXT Championship match between Cole and another EVOLVE alumni, Akira Tozawa. Other matches include Matt Riddle vs Cruiserweight champion Drew Gulak in a non-title bout, and matches involving both EVOLVE Champion Austin Theory and tag team champions Eddie Kingston and Joe Gacy.
A full match card will be announced soon.
The show is still a couple of weeks away, which is plenty of time to announce new matches and other surprises. Fans of NXT unfamiliar with the promotion should definitely check out the event, as not only will it feature current NXT stars but also wrestlers who could end up on the yellow brand in the very near future.
EVOLVE 131 will stream live on the WWE Network on July 13th starting at 8e/5p.Published 27 Jun 2019, 01:45 IST