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January 21, 2006 / Reed

Chris Hero vs. Necro Butcher from IWA Mid-South’s No Retreat, No Surrender 2006

Review by Reed Benson:

European rounds, my guilty pleasure!

This match is not your prototypical European rounds match. I mean, it features the Necro Butcher, for crying out loud! I encourage viewers to watch the whole video to see Chris Hero’s excellent mic work and crowd interaction as he explains the rules and stips, but if I must, I’ll do a quick rundown for those who want to skip to around the 8:36 mark to get right into the match. Here goes…

*Five three-minute rounds.

*First wrestler to score two falls, two submissions, or one knockout wins.

*Closed fists strikes, attacking a downed opponent, and choking will result in a public warning (yellow card). Three warnings is an automatic DQ.

*Low blows and throwing an opponent over the top rope results in an immediate DQ (red card).

*If Hero wins, Trik Davis can never enter the Ted Petty Invitational tournament again.

*If Necro survives all five rounds, Hero must immediately face him in a sit-down bar room brawl.

Bryce Remsburg (with hair! And sideburns!) referees on one leg because Hero forces him to. Claudio “Antonio Cesaro” Castagnoli (with long hair!) is in Hero’s corner, and Trik Davis is in Necro’s.

I’ll come out and say that they did a great job with the match. If you want to see a purer match of this style, go find some vintage Johnny Saint or Marty Jones. This match is more of a masterclass on how to bend the European rules. Hero’s something of a veteran of this style, so he knows just how to work around the trappings to sneak out an advantage. I personally like how Hero kicked Necro while he was down and then choked him when Bryce turned around to announce the public warning.

Necro, meanwhile, is never too far from forgetting his manners and getting himself DQ’d. He does well in the first round by using sumo-style open-hand strikes, but Hero’s technical prowess and knowledge of Bryce’s positioning help him keep the advantage most of the time. Unfortunately for him, it takes all the way until the fourth round for him to get the first fall (with a handful of tights jeans). This makes the fifth round start immediately, and Hero seems to forget that Necro only has to survive, not win, to get his side of the stipulation.

In the end, Hero’s cheating comes back to bite him. He gets a half crab, and Claudio pulls the rope back so Necro can’t grab it, but Arik Cannon (who’s been in these kinds of matches before) runs to the apron. This gives Necro another public warning, but while Bryce’s back is turned, Davis comes in and low blows Hero. This lets Necro get the pin, and even though he doesn’t win the match on one fall, the fifth round ends, meaning that he’s survived and gets his bar room brawl.

Now I feel like I should start another whole review just for this segment! It is a different match, after all. I’ll make it quick. Hero and Necro sit in two chairs and must trade ten punches before pinfalls are allowed. Hero protests, but eventually gives in and is predictably knocked out of his chair multiple times. Necro also adds insult to injury by applying a cravat before the last punch, then chokes Hero out with the Asiatic spike.

Sheesh, that was a lot of words, but it was a very eventful match. It’s not a quick watch, but it is a fun one, so I totally recommend it.

– Reed Benson

My match review site is here.

I don’t often tweet about wrestling, but I have a Tumblr gimmick for it here.

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