3/23 HOW in Minneapolis: Jerry Lynn "The Last F'n Show" retirement match, Sean Waltman undergoes surgery following main event, Sabu, Tommy Dreamer, Rhino, Al Snow, Arik Cannon, Adam Pearce, Perry Saturn
Heavy on Wrestling
Minneapolis, Minnesota at the Minneapolis Convention Center
Report by Jason Powell
1. Perry Saturn, Luke Hawx, and Scott Summers beat Ariya Daivari, John Johnson, and Aaron Corbin. Solid opening match with the live crowd hot for Saturn.
2. Black Stallion beat Rhino by count out. Stallion's manager had a wild look and did a good job of working up the crowd. After Rhino was counted out, the manager took a Gore for a big pop from the crowd.
3. Al Snow and Blue Meanie defeated Craven Knight and Renny D. The match that wouldn't end. The crowd loved the early comedy with Head and got a kick out of Meanie's dancing, but the match overstayed its welcome.
4. Sabu beat Arik Cannon in a No DQ match. Cannon bladed and bled heavily. It was a big hit with the crowd, as he had a long line for photos during the lengthy intermission. Sabu made it clear that he wanted referee Rob Page to stay out of the way early on. This was the most pleasant surprise of the night. I haven't seen a Sabu match in a while. He moved around really well and performed his signature spots. Cannon is very popular locally and got plenty of cheers. Both guys worked really hard and the crowd was appreciative.
Intermission. The break for merch sales went so long that the Snow and Meanie tag match felt short in comparison.
5. Darrin Corbin defeated Tommy Dreamer. Corbin cut a promo before the match in which he insulted Dreamer's wife and children. Dreamer returned fire on the mic and the match was on. It was among the most entertaining matches of the night with good near falls for both wrestlers. Dreamer put Corbin over without losing anything with the crowd. I didn't time the match, but there was talk that it went around 25 minutes.
6. Ben Sailer defeated Adam Pearce to retain the Heavy on Wrestling Championship. Both wrestlers worked hard. The crowd wasn't as receptive to this match because it lacked babyface star power. Pearce came through with his usual strong heel work. Every other match on the show had babyface star power, whereas it didn't seem like the majority of fans were familiar with Sailer. I suspect the match would have been well received earlier in the show, but they apparently opted to put it on late since the promotion's championship was involved.
7. Jerry Lynn defeated Sean Waltman, Horace the Psychopath, and J.B. Trask in a four-way match. The match became a four-way rather than the advertised tornado tag match. There were chair shots, broken tables, and a ladder. The crowd was really hot when Lynn and Waltman squared off early on while the other Twin Cities vets were at ringside. The crowd got up for the near falls even though there was no doubt Lynn was going over in his farewell match.
There was an issue with the finish, as Lynn hit his Cradle Piledriver on Waltman and had him pinned. Horace broke up the pin and referee Jay Soltis was put in a tough spot of calling for the bell or keeping the match going. Horace and Lynn fought, Lynn caught him with a Cradle Piledriver and pinned him for the win.
The locker room emptied and took one knee inside the ring as Trask, Cannon, and Waltman delivered speeches. Lynn, who was presented with an HOW Hall of Fame trophy, eventually gave a speech of his own and spoke about how he never had the big financial run he hoped to have in the business, yet the fans made him feel like a star. It was a classy speech with some good one-liners mixed in.
Notes: This was the best indy event the Twin Cities has hosted in a long time. The talk was that 700-plus chairs were set up in advance and they set up extra chairs right before show time to accommodate everyone. Promoter Dave Sabick did a hell of a job and the Convention Center was a great venue.
The main event finish was a source of frustration for those involved, but the crowd fired up again for the impromptu finish and it seemed all but forgotten by the fans once the post-show ceremony started.
Waltman suffered an injury that required surgery early Sunday morning. He was able to leave the show and attended the after party for an hour or so before he had to be taken by ambulance when the injury he suffered during the match would not stop bleeding. Waltman was doing well on Sunday afternoon and was expected to be released from the hospital on Sunday.
Shawn Daivari and former WWE Diva Alicia Webb (a/k/a Ryan Shamrock) signed autographs at one of the merch tables. Lynn's daughter, father, sister, and other family and friends (including one out of town friend dressed in a "Jerry Lynn Mark" t-shirt) were in attendance. All in all, an entertaining, professional show in a good venue made for a classy sendoff for Lynn.
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