Welcome to episode 10 of RPW TV, otherwise known as the Dr. Johnny Gayton overload hour. Gayton is the 50 something eye surgeon/record holding powerlifter/owner of RPW, and this was the go home show for the biggest live event in RPWâ€™s brief history featuring an appearance by Warner Robinsâ€™ own Ron Simmons.
Katie Mayo caught up with Gayton backstage. Gayton was livid about the antics of Hot Like Lava. Shaun Banks had cost him a shot at the World Powerlifting Championship and broken his championship trophy. Gayton said he was taking Banks out the next time he saw him. â €œThereâ€™s the jerk right now!â€� Gayton tackled Banks from behind, and they were quickly separated.
Cut to Rob Russo and Mayo at ringside with a rabid crowd in the background. Russo said the inaugural RPW Heavyweight Champion would be crowned on todayâ€™s show. Mayo said we would also see the much anticipated lumberjack match (We didnâ€™t. I think it aired a week earlier).
(1) Shaun Banks (with Attorney Destro Xavier) beat J-Rod in 4:42 via DQ to retain the RPW Cruiserweight Title when Gayton interfered.
Mayo and Russo argued incessantly with Sal Rinauro on commentary. Back and forth action. Wild and crazy bumping by Banks. Xavier interfered. Gayton pulled Banks out of the ring on a mistimed spot for the DQ.
**The commentary gave me a headache. Match was just there to continue the angle - Gayton is so obsessed with getting at Banks that he was willing to screw up a title shot for one of his babyface wrestlers.
A chaotic pull apart between Banks and Gayton ensued. Rinauro said Gayton must have taken an extra dose of Metamucil. While this was going on, Rinauro jumped into the ring and clocked J-Rod with the Sal Spray. Cut to Banks in the ring. He told Gayton he would have to go through the other members of Hot Like Lava to get to him. Gayton challenged Lava to a six man. Jones accepted on behalf of Lava. Gayton said one of his partners would be â€œThe Black Supermanâ€� A. J. Steele. The place went nuts when Gayton announced Ron Simmons as his other partner. Banks initiated another brawl, and they jump cut to another pull apart that saw Gayton leaping off the apron to bulldog Banks to the carpet.
Mayo interviewed Banks backstage.
â€�Did you see Captain Geritol interfere in my match? They say the mind is the first thing to go, but that old man is crazy.â€�
Banks was attacked by Gayton for the third time and weâ€™re not even 15 minutes into the hour. Gayton tackled Banks while yelling at the top of his lungs.
Mayo backstage with A. J. Steele and then Orion Bishop for prematch interviews for the RPW Heavyweight Title Match.
Steele - â€œWe have a destiny. Mine is to win, and yours is to lose.â€�
Bishop â€“ â€œThey call him what? The Black Superman? After tonight, heâ€™s going to be calling me the Black Kryptonite.â€�
â€œThe all knowingâ€� Dr. Gayton came to the desk to chastise Rinauro and announce the six man with Simmons was on for November 9. They also announced Gayton vs. Xavier in a Texas Death match for next week.
(2) Orion Bishop beat A. J. Steele to win the RPW Heavyweight Title in 17:30.
See my live report for match description. A solid title match. They worked stiff, the crowd was hot and there were a couple of terrific near falls. Rinauro took command of the commentary, thank God.
Bishop snatched the title belt from Diamond and shoved him. Swerve alert. They hugged. The other members of the Diamond Mine (Kodiak and Frankie Valentine) came out to welcome Bishop into the fold.
(3) Vordell Walker (with Mr. Ace Diamond) beat Rob Adonis in an edited time of 3:45.
Walker ambushed Adonis on his way to the ring, then took a flying leap into the post when Adonis moved. Inside the ring, Walker kicked out of vertical suplex and a back suplex, each at the count of one, and went back on the attack. They cut to Adonis on the comeback with a spinebuster for a near fall. Walker came right back with a powerbomb for a near fall. Walker got a chair from Diamond and wedged it in between the turnbuckles. After close calls both ways, Walker charged and Adonis played matador. Walker kicked out just before the three count. With Diamond providing the distraction, Walker kicked Adonis in the groin and hit an STO for the pin.
**Walker in an edited time of 3:45. Action packed. Walker used some heelish tactics but on the whole, his offense and selling came across more like a babyface.
Cut to Mayo backstage. She was in a panic because Gayton had been attacked by Hot Like Lava. Cut to the parking lot where Cru Jones and Micah Taylor were using a baseball bat on Gayton. Steele chased them away with a baseball bat of his own (those batting cages at Johnny Gâ€™s come in handy). Gayton was screaming about his leg and bleeding from the head.
Backstage, Mayo confronted an ecstatic Hot Like Lava. A man in a red mask appeared behind them. Lava ripped the mask off the guy and it was a petrified Russo. â€œI just wanna be a wrestler.â€� (a true jack of all trades, Russo did reffed and did ring announcing for Deep South Wrestling and he also wrestles)
(4) Dr. Johnny Gayton beat Attorney Destro Xavier in Texas Death Match in a mercifully edited time of 2 minutes.
Xavier came to the ring carrying a sign that read: Florida 49, Georgia 10. Gayton limped to the ring with blood on his head and t-shirt all ripped up. Mayo wanted to know what happened to him. Amnesia must have set in. Xavier attacked the injured leg. Jump cut. Gayton gave Xavier a knee lift and a pair of Samoan Drops, and the attorney was flat on his back for the 10 count. Rinauro said Xavier had a lot of heart because it took like 8 years to get a law degree. Gayton dropped an elbow on Xavier for good measure, then limped over to the announcerâ€™s table and pointed at Rinauro.
**An amazing demonstration of Gaytonâ€™s doctorâ€™s recuperative powers. The good doctor understands how to sell.
(5) Hot Like Lava (Cru Jones & Micah Taylor) beat Lance Christian & A.J. Steele in an edited time of 6:36.
Christian took heat. Taylor used a hammerlock slam. Jones dropped a corkscrew elbow for two. Fast forward to Steele cleaning house with a belly to belly suplex â€œMagnum T.A. style.â€� Fast forward to Lava beating on Steele. Ref bump. Steele and Taylor went down on a double lariat. The Diamond Mine attacked Christian and took him to the back. Rinauro noted Christian was Jason Crossâ€™ trainee. Taylor and Jones hit the Lava Drop (tandem Samoan Drop) on Steele. Jones revived the ref to make the three count.
** It was OK for advancing the feud between Diamond Mine and Cross. Steele got more face time on this show than Gayton.
Lava put Steeleâ€™s arm in a chair. Gayton limped to ringside with a fire extinguisher and immersed Taylor and Jones in CO2.
RPW Flashback. Clips of the entire sequence of events between Gayton and Hot Like Lava that led to Gayton bringing Simmons in as his partner. If Gayton & Steele & Simmons beat Hot Like Lava, Gayton gets a match against Banks next week.
Cut to Gayton, Mayo and Steele dining at Ryanâ€™s Steakhouse. Gayton was talking about the save with the fire extinguisher. â€œWhen you cool lava off, it turns into nothing but dirt.â€� Gayton got a call from Simmons on his cell phone. Taylor and Jones burst through the doorway and whacked Steele and Gayton with plastic trays. Taylor squirted ketchup on Gayton. Jones picked up the cell phone. â€œYo Simmons, see you on the 9th. DAMN!â€� The closing shot showed Gayton and Steele writhing in agony on the floor of Ryanâ€™s.
Closing Thoughts: WHEW. Talk about a frenetically paced show. Night and day compared to the previous episode Iâ€™ve seen (3-7). It wasn't always good but there was never a dull moment. They cut out the non-essential ring entrances. They made good editing decisions with the matches, showing most of them in clipped form. The key exception was the inaugural title match. In a sea of over-the- top insanity, it was an island of serious wrestling, a credible match between two true heavyweights, one that deserved to be shown in its entirety. They also managed to squeeze in advancement of the Diamond Mine story in between the craziness. The sequence at Ryanâ €™s Steakhouse was a gem. I loved it when Jones turned to camera and said â€œscuffed my boots.â€� It raises the question of why there would be a cameraman filming them eating dinner at Ryanâ€™s, but with stupid vignettes being aired by the major companies on a regular basis, itâ€™s a question that isnâ€™t entertained by most fans these days. Gayton was featured in no less than six segments during this one episode. It could almost be justified because of the angle. Almost. Yeah, heâ€™s a man possessed, but a marathon pull apart plus two backstage attacks plus the fire extinguisher, plus being laid out twice? Coming back from the parking lot attack made Gayton look like Superman. Hell, why does he need Simmons? After being to a couple of live shows, I can attest to the fact that the fans in Warner Robins totally buy Gayton as a heroic character. The missing piece was a promo from Simmons. I assume there were reasons it didnâ€™t happen. Airing a legit phone call from him would have been a nice touch, but the Ryanâ€™s segment was the next best thing. The recap segment was a blitz of events that needed to be given more time to let it sink in. Rinauro, Mayo and Gayton were stepping all over each other in the first match. It got better when Rinauro took charge, but the announcing anything but smooth. Russoâ €™s mic was not at the same level as the others and had a weird echo at times. Mayo has gotten much better as a backstage interviewer. There were glaring problems with chronology â€“ from hyping a match that aired the previous week, to talking about a match for next week that aired a few minutes later, to Mayo not knowing what happened to Gayton after a minute earlier telling us he was being attacked. Itâ€™s like they tape without having a solid format. RPW TV has come a long way from where it was six weeks ago, but it still has a ways to go.