Charlie Panther faces Jaxx O'Doul in the upcoming Ringwars 23. This week BG East made the match available as a VOD on The Arena @BGEAST. It's a cool contest between two of the company's stalwarts, close in height and weight (over 6', over 200#) and ready for pretty much anything.
Both men are beauteous beasts. They knuckle down for a serious fight, hardly speaking a word to each other. Although I appreciate clever trash talk, sometimes it's better to watch opponents silently and intently go after each other, letting their moves and holds do all the talking for them.
Initially Charlie is the more aggressive of the two, but Jaxx's mat skills are better, and he's incredibly resilient. Panther piles on the pain, but O'Doul keeps springing back, all pistons firing. We get loads of arm locks, which I count among my favorite holds. Scissors, too. Then hard closed-fist punches and chokes as things heat up, especially towards the end.
The match has a false climax that leads to an even bigger and better climax. After taking two out of three falls, the victor swaggers from the ring, only to be called back by his whipped adversary, who talks him into going three out of five.
The addendum is my favorite part of this match. Not only does the established victor have that classic game-show moment of risking the whole pot for what's behind Door Number Three, but by this point both wrestlers have been through the ringer and are fighting on instincts alone.
The classic drama of two wrestlers' battling fatigue but grimly determined to knock the other guy's lights out never fails to charge me up. For me it's kind of like a drunken brawl. For some reason, an altered state of consciousness in the midst of sweaty hand-to-hand combat is the prime cut of any good wrestling match.