On a gloomy Sunday night in Bethany, CT, professional wrestling bought some Christmas cheer to fans of Northeast Wrestling.
Established in 1995, NEW has been a fixture in the northeast, working primarily in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York with the occasional show in Ohio. The promotion has been the host to a plethora of stars and megastars in wrestling – from Rowdy Roddy Piper to Kurt Angle to Rey Mysterio and just last month, Kenny Omega.
Sunday night’s card – The Fight Before Christmas – was packed full with solid matches and great talent ranging from independent mainstays like “Thrill Ride” Jimmy Preston, JT Dunn, Keith Youngblood, and recent Mae Young Classic competitor Karen Q. Regional promotions like this serve many different functions. They offer a platform to young talent still learning the craft, for performers who have been working on the independent circuit, it is a place to showcase their skills to different audiences. Independent promotions also have the freedom to bring in star performers, like at an event in 2017 when Cody and Ricochet faced off.
Two matches and one segment stood out this evening. The first of them being a tag match between two young and hungry tag teams and was my Match Of The Night. The teams of InZanely Rude (RJ Rude and Zane Bernado) facing off against Private Party (Isaiah Cassidy and Marq Quen) in what was the third encounter between the two teams. Having already faced off twice, Private Party held a 2-0 advantage over the fan favorites. Tag team wrestling is alive and well and this match more than proved it. Fast-paced, hot from the start, both teams upping the ante and switching between power moves and high flying maneuvers, both teams had the crowd into it from the start.
NEW also serves as a springboard for the talent of the future. Current ROH stars, The Kingdom, got their start at Northeast Wrestling. Matt Taven and TK O’Ryan are also former NEW Heavyweight Champions. TK O’Ryan, in Santa regalia as ‘Sassy Claus’, along with his Kingdom cohorts, the “real” ROH World Champion Matt Taven, and Vinny Marseglia made an appearance at the promotion they each called home at an earlier time in their career.
The main event of the evening did not disappoint. For the NEW Heavyweight Champion “Big Bacon” Brad Hollister had a title defense against the “Top Talent” Christian Casanova. Both men had shared the ring a few months prior in a triple threat match with Flip Gordon. I had a chance to talk with Big Bacon prior to the event and he shared his thoughts about this particular matchup
The match itself was a grand effort by both men. Hollister wrestlers a solid power style, reminiscent of Kurt Angle or Tazz, with some solid technical prowess. Casanova is extremely talented, flashy, likes to talk and thinks HE should be the NEW champion. A great back and forth match with plenty of great offense by both men. One of the highlights of the match was a jumping German Suplex. Casanova decided to get underhanded and hit Hollister with a low blow, causing a disqualification. There will be a rematch at NEW’s next event on January 26th.
Overall a great night out at a solid local promotion, and if you are in the northeast and looking for an alternative, this is the promotion to check out.
Northeast Wrestling makes their events available on the Highspots and Pivotshare networks.
You can find Northeast Wrestling on Facebook and on Twitter at @newwrestling1