Boots vs Barefoot
Matthew Riddle vs John Silver, Americanrana '16 (Beyond Wrestling)
Silver's body fascinates me. It's beefy and yet agile. His beard and shaved head deliberately add years to his mere 26 but do nothing to dilute his exuberance. He's an old-school technical wrestler, but his is technique balanced against raw energy and love of rough play. Riddle, his opponent here, has a slacker-surfer vibe that contrasts dramatically with Silver's lockstep intensity, as one of the ringside commentators notes early on. Riddle's body has flow, gentle slopes, an attractive hint of body fat that suggests a moderate love of weed. Silver's, by contrast, suggests military-grade rigor, perhaps in the age of bare-knuckled boxing.
The rasslin' starts right away. Silver's got the textbook moves and holds. Riddle's got the balls. Silver's stiff-necked discipline cannot curb Riddle's robustness, whose wildness and apparent effortlessness must absolutely piss Silver off. They're a perfect match in toughness and drive, but Riddle is the picture of messy brutality, and increasingly this looks like it's going to be the vigorous longhair's show. By midpoint, Silver's starting to move like an old man, but he's still got some fire left in him--and he catches his second wind within minutes, and from that moment on, the fight is a splendid, furious, sweaty explosion of testosterone and clashing styles of masculinity.