Evolve 65 – Review

Evolve 65

Evolve 65, Melrose, MA, July 17th, 2016:

Cruiserweight Classic Spotlight

Cedric Alexander defeated Tommaso Ciampa

What an awesome opening match this was. This could have easily main evented this or any show. These guys know each other so well. Both guys left ROH and have seen their careers advance because of it. This was given lots of time and built into something really great. There was lots of stuff striking from Ciampa. Cedric was as explosive as always. There was lots of great counter wrestling and fun near falls. This was just an outstanding clean wrestling match where both guys looked like polished stars. Alexander picked up the win with the Lumbar Check.

Ethan Page defeated Travis Gordon

This was another quick squash for Page. He dusted Gordon off with a Package Piledriver.

After the match Drew Galloway attacked Page and cut a promo about how he was trying to save Evolve from itself.

Matt Riddle defeated Marty Scurll

This was a second outstanding match. This was superb. Both guys looked like absolute stars and put on one hell of a match. Scurll went after the arm. Scurll has so many little mannerisms that set him a part and he has so many things that are over with the crowd. He hit lots of knees and kicks here. Riddle sold a piledriver by launching himself into the air.  Riddle hit a huge jumping Tombstone for a great near fall and his springboard knee looks devastating. Scurll snapped the fingers and TOES of Riddle. He survived the Chickenwing before locking in the Bromission to get the submission victory.

Drew Gulak, Tracy Williams & Fred Yehi defeated Jonathan Gresham, Chris Dickinson & Darby Allin

If the opposing team got the win here, the winning member would get the opportunity to join Catch Point. This was a really good back and forth match that felt like an exhibition. It was a really competitive match as Catch Point were almost testing the others to see what they had. Allin was taped up after his crazy bump the previous night. He was singled out for a time. Gresham looked really good. He’s a guy that is insanely talented, but for some strange reason never gets picked up regularly by anyone. He should be in Evolve or ROH full time.  Dickinson was the hard hitter of the match. There was some great stuff between Yehi & Gresham. Dickinson had some great scraps with Williams & Gulak. Allin almost killed himself again with a crazy dive. It was completely unnecessary. Williams hurt himself pretty badly when he hit the guardrail on a suicide dive. Dickinson & Gresham ended up fighting which allowed Gulak to make Gresham submit to the Dragon Sleeper.

After the match Catch Point argued over who would be champion. Gulak said no matter who was champion, he would award them the title.  Stokely Hathaway & Timothy Thatcher got involved. Hathaway said his goal was to get Thatcher out of Evolve.  The locker room then separated TJP & Thatcher. They were then turned loose…

EVOLVE Championship

Timothy Thatcher defeated TJ Perkins

This started with a bang, but slowed down into an excellent scientific wrestling match. We had two great, but very different technical wrestlers. The hard hitting of Thatcher vs the lightening quick agility and precision of TJP. TJP worked over an arm, something that Thatcher sold for the rest of the match. TJP hit lots of kicks and Thatcher nailed headbutts and hard uppercuts. They both went for submissions and there were some great transitions from TJP.  TJP got some great near falls with various roll ups.  Thatcher got the win by submission with the Fujiwara Armbar. This was really good.

Cruiserweight Classic Spotlight

Zack Sabre Jr defeated Tony Nese

The was yet another outstanding match. The standard of this show is so high. This is one of the best matches Nese has had in Evolve. Sabre was a machine here again. The CWC has given Nese a new lease on life too. There was lots of striking in this, particularly from Sabre. He laid into Nese with lots of kicks to the chest. He didn’t go after the arm, which showed that Sabre doesn’t have to stick to one game plan in every match. There was an amazing spot where Nese hit a Quebrada, but Sabre caught him in a triangle, which Nese countered into a one armed buckle bomb. This was just a joy to watch. Sabre won with an Owen Hart roll up into a bridge.

Final Showdown

Drew Galloway defeated Johnny Gargano

On such a great show with so many great matches, it was going to take a great main event to top them. That’s exactly what Galloway & Gargano did. This was build as the feud ended between former tag champs Galloway & Gargano and it felt that way.  This was a really intense grudge match that saw both guys try to hurt each other. The brawled and used the ring as a weapon. Gargano was the sympathetic babyface as Galloway dished out the punishment.  Gargano tried to survive and mount a comeback.  He kicked out of two Future Shock’s and two Tombstones, both of which were great near falls. They used each other’s finishers.  The finish saw Gargano make one last attempt before he was dropped with a jumping Tombstone.

After the match Ethan Page ran off Galloway and Gargano apologised for letting anyone down.

Evolve yet again delivered an excellent show.  Every single match delivered and delivered big. Evolve have put together a roster that rivals anything and are one of the most consistent promotions around.

This show is available now at WWNLive.com


Not a boxer but a pro wrestling fan. If there’s a ring I’ll watch it, so naturally I have a lot of opinions (complaints).