WrestleMania Weekend: Josh Barnett’s Bloodsport (4/4/19) Review

Image result for josh barnett's bloodsport
Show number one! Credit: GCW

It’s WrestleMania weekend! A most joyous time of the year and one during which I get drunk and watch lots of wrestling. There are going to be two types of shows happening over the next few days.

  1. Those I watch seriously and make an effort to write a decent review of. For example NJPW/ROH and Stardom.
  2. Those I get drunk in front of and produce a rambling page of gibberish written while I watch the show. For example Spring Break and WrestleMania.

Up first is Bloodsport which slots nicely into the second category, so grab a beer and enjoy some worked shoot wrestling… is that right? Who cares! Let’s get on with it.

We got a rundown of the rules before we started during which Bryce Remsburg made sure to point out there were no rope breaks. That’s funny because there are no ropes. It’s a joke that falls flat without visual aid. Either way, this feels a lot more organised than last year. Perhaps Josh Barnett has taken it more seriously than Matt Riddle.

Dominic Garinni defeated Phil Baroni by DQ maybe? I don’t know.

Phil Baroni either stuffed a sock does his shorts, or he is packing, if that’s all him, fair play. I don’t have a clue who he is, but Wikipedia informs me he was an MMA fighter. He’s up against one of the most boring men to ever step into a wrestling ring, Dominic Garinni.

Phil Baroni is halfway between being a total mess and getting all the heat. He’s calling for timeouts, spitting on Remsburg and at one point (despite being the actual MMA fighter involved in all of this) went for a pinfall. The match was fucking awful, but the clusterfuck that was going on around it was mildly entertaining Anyway, Baroni knocked Garinni out, but because he put his hands on the ref, Baroni got the win. Not the best start.

Verdict: PACKING!

JR Kratos defeated Simon Grimm by knockout

Simon Grimm is the former Simon Gotch and he has bulked up post-WWE. I’ve no idea who JR Kratos is, but he looks like a less defined Kratos from God Of War. Perhaps that’s where he got his name from. Does anyone else think that they are getting all the shit stuff out the way early?

There were two sides to this match. You had the shit where they tried to impress Barnett by wrestling with each other. Then you had the bits where they were smacking each other. The punching is better, but the problem was that they didn’t stick with either one. We’d get a bit of punching, then a bit of wrestling. Let me know if I can look at my phone or not!

Oh shit, we have blood! The Bloodsports have produced bleeding from the Kratos’s nose. I’m not entirely sure how, but it’s flowing! Well, maybe not flowing. Dripping. Anyway, Kratos knocked Grimm out, I was trying to find my beer when it happened, so I’m not entirely sure how… This was okay, though – an improvement on the first match.

Verdict: BLOOD!

Davey Boy Smith Jr. defeated Killer Kross by submission

Davey Boy Smith Jr can’t be any more boring in this format than he is in New Japan. Barnett loves him, so he probably won’t have to moan on Twitter about his booking. In breaking news, I can confirm that I’ve now seen the Kratos knockout, he jumped on him with a forearm thing, and it looked pretty cool. I should probably add it to the bit above, but fuck it.

I’ve never seen Killer Kross wrestle, but I was not expecting this. He’s having a straight-up grapple with Davey and nothing I’ve heard about Kross suggested he had that in him. Christ, I’m enjoying it, and I enjoy practically nothing that DBS Jr does. They’re even telling a story as what started as a sportsmanlike contest has devolved into them slapping the shit out of each other. FUCK YEA!

Smith has just dropped Kross on his head and tapped him the fuck out. I’m sorry I ever said anything bad about him, that was brilliant.

Verdict: FIGHT!

Masashi Takeda defeated Jonathan Gresham by knockout

Now we’re fucking talking! Takeda vs Gresham has got me all hot under the collar. I have no idea what the hell this match is going to look like, but I suspect I’m going to like it. It’s the best deathmatch wrestler in the world vs one of the best technical wrestlers in the world. How can that not be good?

They have fallen to the floor, and we are off. Takeda is bleeding, he’s gone for a chair, but the ref’s stopped him. Instead, they are smacking each other silly. One second Gresham is driving hammer punches into Takeda’s bleeding eye, next second Takeda has a mount and is slapping Gresh’s brains out of his ears. It’s turned into a fight! I love it! Takeda has knocked him out! TAKEDA HAS KNOCKED HIM OUT! Fucking brilliant. I have used too many exclamation marks, this is not a review, but I adored it. Beautiful.

Verdict: WAR!

Chris Dickinson defeated Andy Williams by submission

HAHA! These big bastards have seen Takeda vs Gresham and decided to go out and beat each other senseless! It’s beautiful. They kicked this off by just swinging away until Williams hit a Powerbomb of all things. The crowd are chanting, I’m having a lovely time and why doesn’t the entire world love wrestling. It’s the best.

Sorry, I was about to talk about Andy Williams being in Every Time I Die, but they started hitting each other, so I got distracted. That means he is already a legend whether he can wrestle or not. I’m sitting wearing an ETID hoodie because they are the best and if you don’t think they’re the best, you just haven’t listened to them properly.

Anyway, this isn’t a music article. It’s a wrestling article and Dickinson has just tapped Williams out. They worked a sprint, and while they spent a bit too much time lying on the ground, the period where they hit each other was brutally brilliant. Now, I need to pee.

Verdict: HOSS FIGHT!

Frank Mir defeated Dan Severn by submission

Do you think Frank Mir knows what is going on? I suspect he’s just turned up for the payday. Meanwhile, Phil Baroni is at ringside making a nuisance of himself. That could be part of the show, or he could be an arse, I genuinely don’t know at this point.

Anyway, Mir won in no time at all. The whole thing was a waste of time. Then he called out Brock Lesnar which is hilarious. Maybe he thinks this is WWE? Anyway, Beautiful Tim is out, so onto the next one!

Verdict: YAWN!

Hideki Suzuki defeated Timothy Thatcher by knockout

I love Timothy Thatcher more than I love some close family members. However, I am unsure about this. It has the potential to bore me to sleep. I like grappling, but I don’t know if I like it enough to watch Suzuki vs Thatcher. Plus I’m a bit drunk. It’s possible that is not the right mood for intricate grappling and is more suited to people hitting each other until one of them falls over.

However, we all know that these two are superb at what they do. If you are a wrestling nerd, I’m sure you will take a lot more pleasure from it than I am. Oh wait, here we go, Suzuki has started hitting Thatcher. Awaken the beast! Now they are laying into each other. Every strike sounds like a sledgehammer, and this has gone from something I was struggling to connect with to everything I hoped it could be. Butterfly Suplex from Suzuki and Thatcher is out! Oh, my poor Tim, but that got great. This show rules.


Josh Barnett and Minoru Suzuki fought to a time limit draw

We’re somehow onto the main event, and this has been a perfectly paced show. KAZI NI NARE! Haha, how can you not love Minoru Suzuki? That mental old Murder Grandpa is beautiful. Meanwhile, Josh Barnett is going through his edgy teenager phase. Add a throne to his entrance, and he’s Triple H.

I believe this is the first time I’ve seen Barnett have an actual match as I’ve previously only participated in despising his commentary. Annoyingly, he’s a fucking perfect match for Suzuki. He can wrestle and he can trade strikes with the only bad part being that MiSu isn’t just murdering the motherfucker because I love a good Suzuki murder.

Actually, that might be about to happen, Suzuki has just attacked the ref and started beating Barnett with a chair. SHIT! Barnett no sold it. They are warring on the outside, and I now love Josh Barnett. He is killing Murder Grandpa with a series of knees while the crowd have gone dead. Barnett has won me over, but they’re still in the Suzuki murdering a motherfucker mood.

We have three minutes remaining and how fantastic are Suzuki’s facial expressions? The grin on his face after Barnett hit him was the evilest thing I have ever seen. They are slugging it out in the centre of the ring, and everyone is having a lovely time. Can this never end? Just let them do it for the rest of the weekend, eight hours of this will shit all over WrestleMania. They’ve graduated to headbutts with a minute left! Slap, slap, slap, slap, slap, slap KEEP FUCKING SLAPPING! TIME IS UP! Let them keep fighting you motherfuckers. Suzuki has demanded it. They’re going five more minutes!

Those five minutes started orgasmically as Barnett suplexed Suzuki and he bounced up, then he suplexed him again, and Suzuki bounced up again, and now he’s biting his way out of a choke. Suzuki is a GOD! He’s demanding Barnett stands up and fights him. We can shut down the weekend. Nothing is going to be better than this. I want rest of the weekend to be these two killing each other. We’ve hit the time limit again with the two of them locked in heel hooks and no one is tapping. GIVE US MORE! Fuck the stupid rules. Just let them kill each other.

Ach, they’ve declared it a draw and after initial boos from the fans they have arisen in applause. I can only join them. That was beautiful. God bless Bloodsport.


Overall Show

That fucking ruled. I was worried that my memories of last year’s Bloodsport were better in my head than this could live up to in reality, but I was wrong. You had at least three, possibly four matches that will make my list and that’s Wrestle Kingdom territory. WrestleMania Weekend might have just peaked with one of the very first shows.

If you enjoyed my ramblings, then please consider contributing to my Ko-fi, even the smallest amount is appreciated.

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