Marco vs Rey, Mat Wars 67 (Thunders Arena)
In just his second match in the Arena, 6'2", 215# Rey goes after Marco, 5'8", 180#, all pistons firing. Within seconds, Rey lifts the scrappy fireplug by the adam's apple and presses him to the wall, pinning him there like an exotic species of moth. It takes a few minutes, but Marco eventually returns the favor by banging Rey's spine to the wall like he means to push him through it.
Marco gets a lot of the new guys these days, large and small. Maybe he wants first crack at them so he can personally knock some of the cockiness off before they're too entrenched in the roster. Marco finds nothing and nobody daunting, his mind set on demolishing whoever is fool enough to step on the mat against him.
As the screen grabs above would suggest, the battle is touch and go from beginning to end. True to form for the Arena, the match has multiple climaxes, where for a few seconds we feel we know who the winner is, but then a sudden out-of-nowhere reversal puts what we thought we knew into a tailspin. I like this approach because I want to see both wrestlers in triumph and defeat before one ultimately destroys the other. It makes for a richer story, I think.
Marco is the best storyteller in the Arena ranks. In his own offhand way, he adds intensity to everything that happens on the mat. Dishing up the punishment or taking it, Marco sells as if everything he finds holy in life depends on the outcome of every hold. There's plenty of slamming into the wall here, along with bear hugs, hair tugs, scissors, nelsons, and chokes. Win or lose, you have to be tough to last out twenty minutes. Finally, one of these guys will have enough of it all and submit, ceding swaggering rights to the victor.