Pick your poison, Kansas City.
Dez Wellston has become Mike Outlaw, the name he used before joining the NWL, and he’s sided with NWL STL general manager Matt Jackson and #Anarchy. St. Louis Champion Maverick, meanwhile, has scoffed at #Anarchy on social media and doesn’t seem to be aligning with anyone except himself and his title.
This is a non-title match.
These two had a war during the STL title tournament, and that was back when they were both nice guys. This match isn’t as brutal, but their shots still resonate and there’s a lot more bad blood. Both guys technically represent St. Louis, so the Kansas City crowd isn’t really sure who to get behind. As the match progresses, Outlaw seems to gain at least some of their sympathies thanks to his more athletic style and the fact that he takes the biggest beating. Maverick is a bully throughout; he seems happy disliking everyone, be they wrestler or fan. He’s also surprisingly limber, breaking out an Eddy Guerrero-style slingshot senton during the proceedings.
My biggest takeaway, however, is that Mike Outlaw seems far more comfortable here than he ever did as Dez Wellston. His springboard spinning uppercut, for instance, looks much smoother, and I don’t notice him tripping up on anything (until the end, but that’s for a different reason). It was hard for me to get into Dez Wellston, but I’m definitely excited to see more Mike Outlaw. Maybe the green trunks really were holding him back.
Shady stuff happens at the end. Outlaw gets close after a running boot, but Maverick’s foot makes the ropes. Outlaw criticizes the referee, then climbs to the top, but Maverick yanks the ref between them. Outlaw is confused long enough for Maverick to kick the top rope, crotching Outlaw. Maverick picks Outlaw up and drops him with the running Gory bomb he hasn’t used in a while to get the pin.
Winner – Maverick
Rating – Good