DT: That was from earlier today fans, and once again, both women have been sent home, but I really think this goes to show just how much is at stake in our next bout.
DM: It's a battle for position, Dave, and while it looks like we won't be seeing any girl on girl, what we will see is a match that should speak volumes about where this new and improved EPW will be heading in the new year.
DT: That's right, Dean-o! ..And in the weeks leading up to tonight's show, the First went on record saying that he's really out to HURT the Anglo Luchador in this match-up.
MN: The First has always been kind of a gloomy fellow, dont'chu think?
DM: Call him what you will, the fact of the matter here is that BOTH these of guys are highly motivated individuals; guys that could very well shape the world title scene in 2008.
DT: They call you the Show Stealer, Mr. Mathews, but I don't think you mind me saying that this is the kind of match-up that has the potential to steal any show it's booked on.
MN: Oversell much?
TF: The following match is scheduled for ONE FALL!
[At the entryway, the First emerges with an expression most morose covering his face. Some of the fans react positively to his appearance, some not as much, but the First disregards both contingents as he makes his way toward the ring with a slow, somber march.]
TF: Introducing first, making his way to the ring and weighing in at 210 lbs, he is.... Thhhhhhhheeeee FIRRRRRRSSSSSTTT!
DT: The First is all business here, guys, and it's a good thing too. JA really is one of the under-appreciated stars of our industry; not just here in Empire Pro, but on the A1 circuit and all over the world. He's the kind of guy that, on any given night, can take out anyone in the sport.
DM: No question about it, Dave, but I'll tell ya what... The First is an athlete. He may not look it-
MN: Dude's creepy.
DM: ...and he is a bit unorthodox, but he will put his body... his very physical well-being, on the line each and every time out to give himself a chance to escape with a win. Something a lot of guys aren't willing to do.
[The music of the First fades and 'Eat the Rich' hits the PA, signaling the arrival of one Jerichoholic Anonymous.]
DT: And here's the guy he's gonna have to go through to pick up the 1-2-3...
TF: And his opponent...from Philly, P-A... weighing in at 219 lbs.... JERICHOLIC AA-NONYMOOOOOOOOOOOUUUSSSS!!!
DM: The Anglo Luchador looks as focused as I've ever seen him. We expected the First to bypass the fans, but when a guy with the charisma of JA has this kind of tunnel-vision... you can see just how much is at stake in this kind of match-up.
DT: Well... and we saw it with the women earlier today. The level of tension that as built up heading into this thing... you can cut it with a knife. They feel it, Lollipop and Rozy got caught up in it, even the fans can sense it. I mean, there aren't any titles on the line here, but its matches like these that ultimately end up defining where a competitor is headed in the promotion.
[JA begins to approach ringside, where he and the First engage in a staredown. Ever the epitome of punctuality, the referee steps in and advises the Anglo Luchador to expedite his entrance, but JA takes no notice. In the ring, the First begins to pace.]
DM: These guys are ready to GO, what'chu think Mr. Neely?
MN: Uhh... let the bodies hit the floor?
[Suddenly, the First hits the ropes on the far side, PROPELS himself forward, and LAUNCHES himself over the top rope to the outside!]
DM: There he goes!
DT: And the bodies have indeed hit the floor as THE FIRST comes FLYING to the outside with the PLANCHA!
DM: Already throwing caution to the wind.
[As the two go tumbling, the referee slips his upper body between the second and third ropes to shout at both men.]
DT: This match has yet to see the opening bell, but THE FIRST has wasted no time in drawing FIRST blood!
MN: Appropriate, no?
DT: JA is out on the mat, and let me tell you... there was such impact on that maneuver that even the First is slow to find his feet!
DM: That's why they call it high risk, Davey-boy.
DT: The First now... has his hands on the neck and shoulder of JA to prop him back to a standing position..
[Inside the ring, the official initiates a ten count.]
MN: Heh, peep the ref. He still thinks he's running the show here.
DT: Hard right hand from the First!
DM: I dunno if we're even gonna get an official match here, but either way... JA is in big trouble.
DT: Another hard right from the First! And a left! Right! Left! The Anglo Luchador is reeling here!
DM: They've got to get in the ring or it's not gonna matter!
DT: The First grasps JA by the forearm now and WHHHHHHIPS... NO! JA with the reversal, sending the First into the steel guard rail!
DM: Veteran move there. Ya gotta know where you are in a match at all times.
DT: As the official strikes five, JA has the First back on his feet now and is guiding him to the apron...
DT: Jerichoholic Anonymous and The First, getting things going here in what should be a vanguard year in the history of Empire Pro Wrestling.
[With the official calling out the number seven, JA gets a good grip on the first and rolls him into the the ring.]
MN: Looks like we're gonna start this thing off proper.
[As the Anglo Luchador rolls in after the first, official turns toward the timekeeper and signals for the bell.]
DT: And we're underway here, as... WHOA! The First is quickly on the attack now, as he catches JA rolling in under the ropes!
MN: Where was the zebra on that?! He started the match before JA was even all the way in the ring!
DT: The First.. playing possum perhaps as he sets in with a series of stomps on the grounded Jerichoholic Anonymous.
DM: He looks to be focusing those big boots on the small of JA's back... and again, JA is in a bad way.
DT: The First is looking very aggressive here, starting with that suicide dive and now kicking the life out of a downed Anglo Luchador! The First... brings JA to his feet and sends him off with an Irish Whip! JA - coming back the other way now and the First DROPS HIM with a flying leg lariat!
DM: That dropkick-like maneuver is just one of many aerial weapons the First has at his disposal.
DT: And with JA down once again, the First takes off to the far-side ropes. Using the momentum to slingshot himself off of them now, he takes to the air and CONNECTS with a SENTON SPLASH!
DM: JA is grasping at his mid-section. I think he might be hurt...
MN: Pssshhh... I think he just has indigestion!
DT: And the First isn't wasting any time here as he hits the canvas and hooks a leg for the 1.....
NO - JA gets the shoulder up in the nick of time!
DM: It’s early in the match, but I like that. He said he wants to hurt JA, and I'm sure its true... but he's gonna win this thing in the process!
DT: The First has the Anglo Luchador on his feet once more and again he utilizes the Irish Whip, this time sending him straight into the turnbuckle! The First... taking a step back now, catching a full head of steam, and LEAPING onto the back of JA with a modified splash!
DM: It may not look like it, but its moves like that, catching a guy from behind, that'll pay dividends later in the match.
DT: JA stumbling back now...right into the First's waiting arms and right into the BACK SUPLEX! Nice display of wrestling there by the First.
MN: Probably the FIRST real wrestling I've ever seen him do.
DM: The fans don't like it, but he's looking pretty strong so far.
DT: More boots to the back and side of JA by the First, who looks to be eyeing that top turnbuckle. I think this thing is about to go aerial, Dean Mathews.
DM: Ya gotta go with what brung ya.
DT: The First ascends the turnbuckle and... what's this now... he stops at the second rope and is EYEING his opponent - like a vulture stalks its prey. The First, continuing to climb the turnbuckle, and perching himself on that top rope.
MN: Look out below!
DT: JA is struggling to find his feet... The First is on that top turnbuckle, and... THERE HE GOES!!!
DT: Guillotine Leg Drop - executed to perfection! I could see the ring shake as he connected with the limp body of the former A1E Heavyweight Champion!
DM: Is he going for the cover here.. or?
DT: No such luck for JA as the First sets in with another series of stomps to the back! Now he looks for the cover, as the referee slides in for a 1.....
No such luck as JA manages to hook the bottom rope with his leg!
DM: More savvy from the Anglo Luchador. He's still a young guy, but he knows all the tricks of the trade.
DT: The First looks to be just a smidge frustrated now after two failed pinfall attempts. The First... edges in toward the still-wavering JA and is... oh my. The First has hi hands around the head and neck of JA and is SMEARING his face into the canvas!
MN: A nice cheese-grating motion.
DT: The referee is stepping in now and issuing a few words of warning to the First, but he pays it no mind... and responds instead by SLAMMING JA's head down like a hammer!
DM: He really wasn't kidding about hurting this guy.
DT: And it looks like the official has had enough as he physically imposes himself upon - whooooooa, whoooooa, whooooooa...
[The First grabs the referee by the shirt and shoves him away and into the corner!]
DM: Caaareful! This is the kind of thing that could bring the match to an early end.
DT: The official was stepping in; he obviously didn't like the way the First was grinding JA's skin against the canvas, and the First responded by pushing him away.
MN: I mean, technically speaking, that's a legal move.
DT: Which is exactly the point the First is probably trying to make here as he and the official engage in some debate. Meanwhile, the Anglo Luchador is trying to scoot away and find his feet, but he just can't seem to muster much movement.
DM: What I want to know is why the First is screwing around with the referee. He's obviously caught JA off guard here... he's got to take advantage.
DT: Well, I think he's aware of that fact, because it looks like he's turned his attention back to JA. The First... is grasping at JA once again and-
DM: Look out!
DT: SMALL PACKAGE BY THE ANGLO LUCHADOR!
DM: The First is NOT happy!
DT: The First kicks out with AUTHORITY and is quick to connect with an ELBOW DROP to the lower back!
DM: He really looks to be focusing on either the back or the kidneys of JA.
DT: No doubt an effort to limit his ability, Dean, and JA is now being brought back to his feet by the First. JA - being whipped and sent off to the - No... reversal by JA! There goes the First! Back the other way now and JA attempts... and misses with the lariat! The First off a second set of ropes and ANOTHER missed clothesline by JA! The First - off the ropes one more time aaaand...
DT: Back body drop by the Anglo Luchador!!! Nice recovery here by JA after a less than stellar start to the match! JA with the cover now and a 1....
The First gets the shoulder up!
DM: Gonna have to do more than that to shut down this kind of momentum.
DT: JA gets the First on his feet - looking for the scoop slam. He has him uuuuuuuup...NO. The First slips out and finds himself at JA's rear! Quickly now, he shoves JA into the ropes, JA comes back off them in reverse, and the First with a VICTORY ROLL!
JA is out at TWO! Both men now, finding their feet and charging at one another... arm drag by the First! JA's up quickly though and attempts to, no... another arm drag by the First, sending JA back to the canvas! Again, JA is up - this time trying a clothesline, but the First ducks it! The First now.. CHARGING at JA, but JA dodges the First's outstretched arm! The First - hitting the ropes - shooting back toward the center of the ring and-
DT: THERE'S A DROP TOE HOLD BY JA! The First hits the mat face first, and it looks like JA is quick to come down after him, applying a side headlock as the First fights to get back to a vertical base! Good back and forth exchange here as the fans in attendance respond to the action, but it's the Anglo Luchador who now has the First on one knee with his head locked in beneath his arm! The First... squirming about and hitting the mid-section of JA with his forearm, trying to build up some kind of momentum and wiggle his way out of the hold, but JA won't relent! JA reeeeeeeally cinching in on that neck. The First has managed to reassume a standing position, but it doesn't look like he's done much of anything with this hold.
DM: It's a bit of a stalemate right now, but the longer JA is able to keep that hold locked in, the worse its gonna be for the First.
DT: The First looked to have all the momentum in the early going, Dean, but now it appears as if JA has turned the tables.
DM: Well it ain't over yet.
DT: The referee steps in to check on the status of the First, but the First is quick to warn him away!
MN: He's not ready to mail this thing in yet, eh?
DT: No sir! And it looks like he's actually responding with more punches to the side of JA.
DM: Still workin' those kidneys.
DT: JA still has the hold on, but it looks to be weakening! The First is firing a steady line of punches to the midsection with his right hand while grasping at JA's other side with his left. The First.... now trying to push off of JA's body with his arms, but that hold is still locked in.
DM: I dunno if locked is the word at this point, the First is working on it - JA's gotta be careful here.
DT: The First... now looks to be positioning his left arm over JA's back - he's raising it up.... RABBIT PUNCH to the back of the neck by the First!
MN: Heh, rabbit punch...
DM: He didn't have much leverage with that punch, but he caught the right spot for sure.
DT: Another punch to the back of JA's neck, and fans... I cannot stress enough the amount of damage that can be dealt with these kinds of punches!
DM: JA's hold looks like it's loosening a bit, but yeah... you gotta watch out for those rabbit punches. That can be severe neck and spine damage.
DT: The First really laying in now with a hammer-fisted punch to the base of the skull, creating more and more separation between he and the Anglo Luchador with each strike!! JA is attempting to reposition himself with the hold, but WHAT'S THIS?! The First grasps JA at the sides and is attempting to up-end him! JA - releasing the hold now and trying to retaliate with a strike to the side of the face, but the FIRST HAS HIM UP! The First has JA up in the air... going for the SUUUUUUPLEEEEEEEEEEEX.......
DT: JA is able to flip back and land on his feet as the First attempted the belly-to-back suplex! The Anglo Luchador now.. spinning the First about and catching him with a swooping cross to the jaw! And a jab! And another! A flurry of punches now from the Anglo Luchador and the First is reeling once again!
MN: C'mon bro, don't punk out on us!
DT: The First is forced back against the ropes and after a couple more jabs to the face for good measure, Jerichoholic Anonymous sends him shooting off to the other side of the ring with the whip! Back the other way now and THE FIRST is able to leap frog a lunging JA and continue on to the opposite side. Comin' back one more time and it's the First with a HEADSCISSOR TAKEOVER! Down goes JA!! Both men are quick to find their feet... but as JA charges in-
DT: It's the First catching him with a CRAZY dropkick!
DM: He flipped around in the air like Pele on that one!
DT: Both men up in a hurry once again and it's The First with a hip toss - NO! Reverse! It's JA with an arm drag! Both men up for a THIRD GO-ROUND, but this time it's THE FIRST with a KICK TO THE GUT! He's got him set-
DM: Here it comes!
DT: JA's uuuuuuuuuuuuup....
DT: Aaaaannd DOOOOOOOOWN IN A HURRY WITH THE SIT-DOWN POWERBOMB!!!!
DM: WHAT IMPACT! And right to that back once again!!
DT: JA is OUT COLD on the canvas, as the First grabs the second rope and pulls himself back to his feet!! The fans are up and out of the seats, sensing as the First must, that JA is on his last legs!
MN: He's puttin' this baby to bed!
DT: The First, turns his attention back to JA and is.. PULLING HIM UP BY THE HAIR!
MN: These emo kids are vicious!
DT: Once again, the official is quick to admonish the First, warning him to release the hair, and this time he complies.
DM: What's he gonna do here?
DT: The First... has JA back on his feet and is guiding him into the turnbuckle. He's got 'im by the arm and.... it looks like he's ascending the turnbuckle! The First - makes his way to the top rope and he still has the Anglo Luchador in his grasp!
MN: Oh my.
DT: The First still clinging to that arm and... what's this? It looks like he's stepping out onto the rope! The display of balance and agility, ladies and gentlemen... it's really unbelievable! The First has JA by the arm and is walking along that top rope! Two steps, now THREE STEPS out and he's still got the former A1E champ by the arm! The fans are rising to their feet now as the First faces the Anglo Luchador!
DM: Look out!
DT: The First, perched atop that tight rope, zeroing in on JA... and JUMPING off the top rope!
DT: The First CONNECTING with a chopping strike as he leapt off that top rope! Down goes JA, as the First rolls into the landing! The First, rising to his feet now - flipping his hair up as he stands proudly! THIS COULD BE IT!! The First... gathers a full head of steam and DASHES at JA - it's the INESCAPABLE TORMENT!!!!! That Oklahoma Roll that- NOOOOOO!!! JA USES THE FIRST'S MOMENTUM AGAINST HIM AND ROLLS IT OVER!! THE REFEREE IS IN POSITION!!
MN: WHAT?! HE HAD THE TIGHTS!!!
[DING! DING DING!]
DT: JA HAS STOLEN A VICTORY FROM THE FIRST!!!
MN: DUDE! HE HAD THE TIGHTS!!
DT: The Anglo Luchador, rolls through that pinning predicament, turns it around on the First, and gets a fist full of tights to seal the deal!
[A dazed and confused Anglo Luchador quickly rolls out of the ring and stumbles backward. Inside the squared circle, the First is stunned.]
DM: Words probably can't express the disappointment he's feeling right now.
DT: The First attempted to lock up that trademark cover, but JA actually used the First's momentum to turn it over on him!
DM: And again, as he displayed throughout the match, a slick maneuver by JA, grabbing the tights... the referee was out of position, and before ya know it, he's got the win.
MN: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! I'm a total douche-bag and even I thought that was a joke!
DT: Well, no matter how you look at it, it will go down as a victory for JA, despite the fact that the First really controlled the match, and despite the fact that it was an act of desperation that secured the W.
[In the ring, the First is screaming at the official; desperately pleading his case. Meanwhile, JA stumbles up the entryway with his hands raised into the air.]
DM: Listen, the First is a guy who's gonna make waves in the year to come, but tonight... dubious though it may have been, The Anglo Luchador did what he needed to do to became the first guy out of the gate!
DT: Score one for Jerichoholic Anonymous. It will be interesting to see what the fallout of this thing is.
DT: We'll be right back!