88 and Rock Hard
Tanner Hill vs Chase Lundquist (88Wrestling)
The second of 88's two debut matches introduces a ring wrestling version of the game tic-tac-toe. The goal is for one wrestler to complete a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal line just as in the paper version of the game. In 88's revised version, the spaces are labeled Sleeper Knockout, 10-Count Knockout, and Hogtie Opponent (top row); Ab Bash Submission, Schoolboy Pin, and Upper Body Submission (middle row); and Tree of Woe Submission, Strip Opponent, and Leg Submission (bottom row). The gimmick does not excite me, but it is ingenious and humorous and should please plenty of other fans.
Several readers have asked me what's going on with Rock Hard Wrestling these days, sensing a connection between it and the debuting 88. I was informed on Friday that Rock Hard is going out of business by mutual agreement of its two co-owners, with one of the owners continuing in the wrestling business with 88Wrestling. The new company boasts the following goals (and I quote Bob, the owner):
- to bring the next generation of superstar wrestlers to the underground wrestling scene, along with some favorite blasts from the past;
- to bring exciting, never seen before match series for our fans and customers to enjoy; and
- to bring quality videos at reasonable prices to our fans and customers.
I will miss RHW but trust that 88 is serious in its intent to foster new and exciting talent and present a few twists into underground wrestling entertainment. My tastes are more basic than most fans', so my hope is that 88 will leave room for some old-fashioned grunt-and-groan matches sans props, irony, or embellishments. I also hope the roster grows and diversifies over time. Lundquist and Hill both look like keepers to me, but so far the most accomplished and dynamic (known) wrestler on the roster is Austin Cooper, who is not featured in the first catalog. A price of $20.95 is reasonable for a 22-minute download (and like Rock Hard, 88 is offering the option of a two-match DVD).
I'm guardedly optimistic about 88 and look forward to future catalogs. I wish success and longevity to the new company and unofficially welcome it to the growing "small pond" of underground wrestling.
Visit 88Wrestling here.