The Go-Home Show. A time to stand up and be counted – to make a name for yourself, or to remind your opponent just how dangerous you can be. Or, I guess, to try to kill your opponent if you’re the son of a sociopath.
Refueled had everything I wanted as a fan, save for maybe a contract signing and an overturned table. An unexpected victory. A redemption victory. A… Well, to steal a good friend of mine’s line, a very #PREDICTABLE victory. We even had the return of a Hall of Famer guy who, on balance, probably might one day make it into the Hall of Fame. Hell, they let me in didn’t they?
So, what stood out for me this week? Let’s take a look…
Arthur Pleasant is ready for war: His legitimacy for the War Games match has been questioned for weeks – ok, so most of that was me – but he put to bed any lingering doubts on Saturday night when he fought a battle with Steve Harrison. The Provocateur picked up the biggest win of his fledgling HOW career, and the timing of it could not be better. Both men put everything on the line, rivalling last week’s Teddy Palmer-Clay Byrd classic in the Match of the Year category and putting my Not-The-Best Bet of the Week in jeopardy. Arthur picked up the win in the biggest of spots and there can be no further questions about his place in the War Games match.
Steve Harrison will come again: While Arthur’s victory instantly catapulted him to the forefront of this writer’s mind as a contender to win War Games, that doesn’t mean we’re playing a zero-sum game. Steve Harrison’s stock remains unscathed in this loss, as he pushed Pleasant to his limit. Both men showed just how difficult they are to keep down – and that will only be intensified when the HOW World Championship is on the line. Harrison lost the battle, but the war is yet to begin, and something tells me he will want to bounce back from this immediately. It won’t take a miracle for this man to succeed on June 6th.
Conor Fuse is a really nice guy… kinda: As far-fetched as it seems that Darin Zion stands a snowflake’s chance in hell of winning War Games, Conor Fuse welcomed him into the 214 fold with open arms anyway. Sure, he was the welcoming party for absolutely everybody Lindsay Troy recruited for War Games, but particularly for Zion, it was a nice touch. Well… aside from the barbed wire controllers he handed out. How would that even work, without dicing up your own hand? Anyway… Conor showed his spiteful side when he smashed Sutler’s head into the ground repeatedly – and showed just why he cannot be overlooked at the Tokyo Dome, unlike his new B-F-F.
John Sektor is back: Last week, I told you never to count this man out, because he is John freakin’ Sektor… And I was right. The Gold Standard’s stock may fluctuate a lot more than the precious metal he prides himself upon, but when it’s high, it’s high. A few weeks ago, he found his focus and instantly changed his short-term prospects. Sektor joins Mike Best and Sutler Kael in a very exclusive club of men that have beaten the man-mountain that is Dan Ryan in 2021, and it has to give him confidence as we steamroll towards Tokyo.
The 2-1-4 are in trouble: Lindsay Troy continues to fail to lead by example. She had the chance to step in the ring first and at least try to light a fire under her team-mates, but instead she let Conor Fuse – a man that had very nearly been crushed to death not long before – step in the ring first. I will give her credit for surviving the round with Mike Best, but we were left in no doubt how that would have ended in a 1-on-1 match between the two. She talked a good game during the week leading up to this one, but left me non-plussed by her actions. And then, there is Zeb Martin…
Zeb Martin is out of his depth: On Friday, I said that it’s time for Zeb Martin to show the world who he really is. He lasted 10 seconds in the cage with Cancer Jiles – 9 of those seconds were the referee’s count. If that was Zeb showing us who he really is, then as I said before – the 2-1-4 are in trouble. With an underwhelming leader and a reliance on a trusted friend that could not even land a single moment of offense, things do not look good for the Rebels going up against the Empire (no, not that one, M-People.) Even their version of Luke Skywalker – yes, I’m going to keep going with this analogy – was conspicuous by his absence. Perhaps he was still reeling from the chair shot that sent him flying overboard to join Clay Byrd in the drink last week, but when your biggest asset doesn’t even show up for your last opportunity to gain an advantage, things are not going well. Who would have thought three weeks ago that the 2-1-4’s savior could be Arthur Pleasant?
Not all presents are good ones: On paper, Mike Best destroys Scott Stevens. On form, Mike Best destroys Scott Stevens. Historically, Mike Best has destroyed Scott Stevens. So why do I have a feeling that this isn’t going to be as straightforward as it appears? Well, for one, I wouldn’t blame Mike if he thought he could phone this one in – and we have a very recent example of why that is a bad idea. For another, I don’t know why Scott Stevens would sign up for this if he wasn’t 100% focused and ready to put everything on the line. He has been the butt of 970000 jokes in HOW, but let’s not forget that Scott Stevens is a big, tough Texan and when he’s on his game… Well, he still usually loses to Mike, but he gives him a damn good match. If that is the Scott Stevens we get, I expect this to be a lot closer than most of the HOW locker room.
With no Refueled this week, there are also no betting odds. Or any reason for me to try to work out whatever LXIIVDXIIIVL is in Roman numerals. We never had this problem with Monday Night Mayhem. Just saying…
So, while the roster may already be taking bets on whether or not Scott Stevens accepts Mike Best’s deathmatch challenge (because serial wrestler murder is apparently a thing now), you will just have to wait until next week for the line from High Octane Gambling.