Thursday, December 27, 2012

On the War Path

Welcome to the first official blog of The Dark Match. Through the end of December, and throughout January I am going to be updating The Dark Match with the major history points of season 11, for every single wrestler. That is a lot, so I better get started now! To kick-off The Dark Match I have decided to do a championship series, giving season 11 history for all of the champions. What better place to begin than with the titan and current Grand Champion, Eddie Kingston.

Eddie Kingston

CHIKARA Debut: October 2002
Affiliations: The Wildcards (w/Blackjack Marciano)
                 The Toxic Trio (w/Blackjack Marciano, Jigsaw)
                 The Roughnecks (W/Brodie Lee, Grizzly Redwood)

  When I think of the King of Diamonds, I instantly think to Kenta Kobashi. Some might call this a rather generous comparison, but Eddie wrestles with the same stiff puro style that made Kenta such a pleasure to watch. Eddie closed out 2011 winning the first ever Chikara Grand Championship match over Mike Quackenbush in the finals of the year-long 12 Large Summit. It was a stiff, hard fought battle, both men leaving nothing outside the ring. At the end of Chikara's first ever IPPV, High Noon, Kingston pinned Mike to cap off his amazing season. Though not slated to compete at the season 11 debut event in Easton, Eddie was given time to address the crowd. Before Eddie could utter his first words as champ, he was blindsided by Vin Gerard. During season 10, Vin had been a thorn in the side of the King of Diamonds. After assaulting Kingston after a match, Gerard was removed from the Chikara roster. But this didn't stop the brash and overconfident Gerard from crashing what should've been Eddie's shining and well deserved moment. After having some forceful words with Wink Vavasseur, the current Director of Fun, Gerard was reinstated into Chikara and Eddie's first Grand Championship defense was set for February 26th in Long Island. There was more on the line though than just the Grand Championship as Vin decreed if he couldn't beat Eddie for the title, he would leave Chikara forever...
        From the opening bell until Bryce slapped his hand on the mat for 3, Eddie and Gerard's match felt like a dog fight. Beginning outside the ring, both combatants crashed through chairs and bounced off walls. After withstanding Gerard's 2K1 bomb, Kingston struck down Gerard with a back fist, successfully defending his title for the first time and ending Vin's Chikara career.
        The Big Rig Brodie Lee was injured for part of 2011 and this stopped him from being able to properly compete in the 12 Large Summit tournament. On his return to in ring action, Brodie vowed to show that he deserved to be the number one contender to the belt. After dispatching Ultramantis Black at Joshimania night 3, he continued his rampage defeating Jigsaw and Fire Ant. Proving he was more than capable, Brodie was given his opportunity to take on Eddie in Chikara's debut event in Ottawa, Canada. The Big Rig rolled into Ottawa with one thought: take the title that he believed to be rightfully his. In his first defense, Eddie had to contend with Gerard's assault on his knee trying to capitalize on an injury Kingston struggled with through much of Season 10. Even though Brodie was familiar with the injured Kingston, he ignored the knee. Instead, Brodie and Eddie had a Chikara classic, matching each other blow for blow, suplex for suplex. Attempting to take Eddie's spirit out of the match, Brodie gave Eddie a swift kick in the nether regions. This low blow couldn't stop the surging champ and, with a sliding D, Eddie retained his title once again. In the four months that Eddie had held his title, he had dispatched with two of the most seasoned competitors to step into the Chikara ring. It wouldn't take long for word to get out that Eddie Kingston was the rightful Grand Champion and anyone intending on taking the belt from his waist was going to have to be a monster between the ropes. And a monster did indeed answer the call.
        Chikara and Ring of Honor joined forces for one day in April, creating the duel promotion event Synergy. Coming out of the ROH shadows came Eddie's next challenger: the Anti-Christ of Professional Wrestling, Mr. Wrestling Kevin Steen. For weeks before the match Steen antagonized Kingston, calling Chikara a Mickey Mouse wrestling company. Kingston, being a man who has stood with Chikara from shortly after the opening of the doors, took personal offence to Steen's mockery of his company. On April 28th the War King rode into battle to face the Bumblebee mask wearing Steen. Both men are heavy hitters, and Eddie's third title defence reflected this. Steen's temper however took control, and like Brodie gave Eddie a crack between the legs. This time however, official Bryce Remsburg saw the offence and called the match. Mocking Kingston even further, Steen kissed Eddie and laid across his downed body, slapping the mat for his own three count. Even though the match ended with a despicable act, it still stood as Eddie's third successful title defense.
        After defending his belt consistently, Eddie was given a few events to rest. The Grand Championship was not defended in Lafayette or in Chikara's return to Easton. At Anniversario: A Horse of Another Colour, Eddie and Jigsaw stood on opposites sides of a eight man main event. A enjoyable contest that saw Eddie fall and be pinned for the first time in 2012, succumbing to the super-brain buster. When Jigsaw went to shake his long time friend's hand, Eddie refused, raising the ire of Jigsaw. These two men were set to battle for the Grand Championship the next evening and Kingston was showing that, in wrestling, there are no certainties in friendship. Eddie and Jigsaw faced off during the 12 Large Summit (with King coming out on top) and if that match was any indication of things to come, the fans at the Highline Ballroom were in for a hard-fought battle.
        As expected, Jigsaw and Kingston put on a clinic of passion and heart. These two came up through the Wrestle Factory together, and are highly familiar with each other. In the end, Jigsaw's skull received three crushing back fists. With four title defenses, each more compelling a duel than the last, Eddie was beginning to look unstoppable. One man believed that he had the makings of a champion, and why not? Dasher Hatfield has decades more experience on this earth than Eddie. Sure, most of it might have been baseball experience, but all those years give Dasher a competitive edge. Coming off a win over Canada's adopted son El Generico, Dasher squared off against Eddie in Syracuse. It only took one underhand pitch to the behind, and Eddie showed Dasher that Grand Championship matches were no sunny day at the baseball field. Dasher rose to meet Eddie's challenge, tossing Kingston over his head twice with dragon suplexes, and crashing Eddie down with a suicide squeeze. It was for naught though, and after rolling backdrop drivers, Kingston was victorious again.
        After five defenses, who was going to challenge Eddie for his Grand Championship now? Kingston had gained hard fought victories over all of his opponents and the question on everyone's lips was who would be next to face the King? The answer: Why the Queen, of course. On July 28th, the War King met with the Queen of Wrestling, Sara Del Rey. In her second last match with the company, talk was all about the possibility of seeing a Summer of Sara. The answer was no and Kingston kept his throne, but the Queen gave Kingston his toughest defense to date.
        The remainder of the summer was quiet for Eddie. He did not defend the title once in the month of August. During the semi-finals and finals of the Young Lions Cup (we will be getting to Mr. Touchdown after the CdP) Kingston did win two non-title matches against the rising Shard, and always dapper Harlem Bravado. Kingston's next title defense came during this years King of Trios. Amongst the multi-man mayhem that only KOT can produce, on night 2, Eddie defended against Tadasuke, the Young Lions Cup holder from 2011. We had not seen him in over a year, but it was clear during his time away from Chikara he had been training. These two monsters clashed with heavy strikes and bone jarring suplexes. Eddie was victorious, but his celebration was ended abruptly by one Tim Donst. Tim's had quite the history with the Grand Champion facing him in a series of matches in 2007 shortly after his wrestling debut. To say Kingston layed beatings on Donst would be a gross understatement. He brutalized him and Tim had clearly never forgotten. Tim called Eddie a monster, accused him of being everything wrong with current wrestling. Putting Eddie on the receiving end of a STO, Tim left him downed in the ring.
        After Eddie's encounter at King of Trios, he disappeared from action for quite some time. As the acclaimed Cibernetico approached, Eddie was faced with some unfinished business in the form of one Kevin Steen. Kingston and old rival Steen were named team captains for the Cibernetico match. Steen was allowed to choose his own team, but our trusty DOF Wink chose Kingston's team for him. Wouldn't you believe it, Mr. Tim Donst was placed on Eddie's team. During the Cibernetico match, Tim didn't even try to be a productive member of his team. However, if a member of Team Steen dumped Eddie over the ropes, Tim was there quickly to capitalize. After more than an hour, only Eddie, Steen and Tim remained. Finally gaining a measure of revenge, Kingston eliminated Steen. Cibernetico rules however are unlike your typical team matches. There can only be one winner so it can come down to teammates having to face off and that's just what happened here. Using a rather suspicious object obtained by Jakob Hammermeier, Tim knocked out Eddie and won the match. He didn't stop there though and he and Jakob then tied Kingston to the ropes where Donst continued the beating and inform the Champ that he was giving him "two weeks notice".
        Those two weeks just happened to coincide with Under the Hood, Chikara's third IPPV, and second to be hosted at the Troc in Philadelphia. Tim had been granted his title shot and promised to change Chikara forever on this night, and destroy what was wrong with professional wrestling, Eddie Kingston. Tim gave it his all, suplexing Eddie out of the corner onto his head, and slamming his body onto the wooden ramp outside the ring. This wasn't enough and even the reluctant interference by Hammermeier couldn't turn the tide and Eddie finally silenced the young Donst.
        Wow! Eddie Kingston had a all-star year in season 11. Only being pinned to the mat twice, Eddie cemented his legacy in Chikara history. Next up for The Dark Match will be the current reigning CdP, the Young Bucks

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