I thought to write a breakdown of the things I witnessed from a coaching perspective at FCF Wrestling’s Jatkosota 2015 event in Helsinki this past weekend. Since many people don’t really understand the nature of the beast that is professional wrestling, maybe this will help to shed some light on the game, and folks just might be able to grasp how incredibly demanding the sport is on so many levels.
In the opener tag match which I was a part of, I was really impressed with the physical aggression of King Kong Karhula, who tagged with Pyöveli Petrov. The big man is undoubtedly at the top of his game right now after spending 10 years in the sport to date, as his timing is impeccable, every single move and all of his execution is full-out and in-pocket. He has all the bases covered: the character, the charisma and the ring skills. I would be surprised if WWE didn’t take a serious look at this guy in the very near future. The way Karhula brutalized my tag team partner Sly Sebastian in our tag match made me feel sorry for little Sly. Mean and nasty in the ring, Karhula is one to watch for, and promoters in Europe should seriously consider booking him, regardless of the financial struggles that most of the continent has been facing for quite some time already.
The Beast’s power displays in his match against Jessica Love were impressive, to say the least. Especially catching Jessica’s top rope crossbody and turning it into a jackhammer in one fell swoop for the winning pinfall was a thing to behold. This big man is developing at an alarming pace, and he is another one that WWE should be keeping their eyes on, and dismantling fan favorite Jessica Love gives The Beast major momentum right now.
The hunger, spark and fire shown by young newcomers Jami Aalto and Joey Impact was a thing of beauty to behold in their match against Stark Adder and Ricky Vendetta. You can really see that these two rookies ”want it.” They want to grasp the brass ring and make a real impression on the fans, in their quest to become stars in this grappling game. Both Aalto and Impact showed incredible drive, heart and passion as they gutsily fought the experienced duo of Adder and Vendetta, who are the most cohesive unit in FCF Wrestling today and one mean team. I predict a bright future for these kids. Keep it up!
After suffering a brutal beating at the hands of ”Wildman” Heimo Ukonselkä, Mikko Maestro faces a transition akin to that undergone by Kurt Angle somewhere around the year 2000. Angle was a comedy wrestler in WWE at the time, and in his feud with Triple H, he had to step it up and find his serious game face. Maestro simply cannot continue as a light-hearted, fun guy after the way Heimo abused him. He will have to find the reserves deep down to become more that what he is now, if he hopes to stand toe-to-toe with Ukonselkä. Now is the time for Mikko Maestro to change his game.
Mikko Maestro brutalized by Heimo Ukonselkä (Photo: Mats Havia 2015)
The triple threat tag team match between HC Andersen & Robert Holmström, The Luupää Brothers and Murskaaja Mieto & Tohtori Ioni had one competitor outshine everyone. Vili Luupää showed the kind of timing, fire and fluidity in his hot tag comeback, that I have last seen Daniel Bryan do something similar when he was feuding with The Shield in WWE a couple of years back. I really have to give props to Vili Luupää, who is another one grasping for the elusive brass ring right now.
The women’s triple threat match was short and sweet, but the girls really showed some pizzazz and spice while they were in there. For a long time, pro wrestling has been coined ”the grunt and groan game”, and one thing that matches must have is audibles and noise (since no one likes to watch sports or movies with the sound turned off). Julia Kyy (main audibles here and best character presence overall), Sara Elektra and newcomer Regina really put in a spirited effort for the few minutes that they had, before Robert Holmström interjected himself in the match and drew the kind of heat from the audience that borders on being criminal. Holmström has that ”asshole” kind of quality to his ring character that people find easy to hate, and it should be interesting to see how he fares against the girls, because that seems to be his intergender modus operandi now.
France’s Jimmy Gavroche and FCF champion Valentine had one of the best pure wrestling matches that I have seen in a long, long time. I felt that Gavroche really pushed Valentine to his fullest potential and visa versa. It’s a thing of beauty to see the marquee done right, and the name on the marquee reads ”wrestling.” Tight ring work, well-paced and holding solid match psychology, this was a worthy main event. Gavroche has great fire and body language and I can understand why it is easy for the audience to get behind him, even if he is a foreign wrestler coming in against one of FCF’s own. There were so many false finishes in this match that it kept everyone on the edge of their seats. It was really something to see live, which is exactly how professional wrestling should be enjoyed. Big props to both men for an incredible effort. I also have to state, that I was really taken aback at how the fans responded to The Beast coming out after the match to stare down Valentine, as the audience erupted into a completely spontaneous ”Beast is gonna kill you!” chant that continued even after The Beast left the ring and went to the back. There’s something very volatile brewing here!
Be sure to come out for the next FCF Wrestling event in Porvoo, Finland on June 5 at the city’s #URBCULT happening, as there is nothing quite like the live experience that the game provides. Take a look at this fantastic video to see exactly what I’m talking about and we hope to see you next time!