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Major League Wrestling’s first-ever two-hour special on beIN SPORTS made history. Major League Wrestling held the first-ever Battle Riot, with the winner receiving a shot at the World Heavyweight Champion any time he wants it. The Battle Riot network special also saw the crowning of the World Middleweight Champion.
Tom Lawlor outlasted 39 other men to win the first-ever Battle Riot. Maxwell J. Friedman – better known as MJF – defeated Joey Ryan for the World Middleweight Championship. In the first match of the evening, Kotto Brazil picked up a huge victory in the middleweight division over the debuting and red-hot Myron Reed.
Lawlor Outlasts Them All
He’s been the No. 1-ranked fighter in the MLW Top 10 for two straight months. On last week’s episode of MLW: FUSION, he lost a bloody grudge match to Jimmy Havoc and put his status in jeopardy. But “Filthy” Tom Lawlor showed at Battle Riot why he’s in the top spot in the rankings and now he owns a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship any time he wants it.
Lawlor entered at No. 5 in the Battle Riot, where 40 men entered in 60-second intervals. Wrestlers were eliminated by pinfall, submission or by being thrown over the top rope to the floor.
In an incredible display of stamina, Lawlor was in the ring for 48 minutes, 41 seconds of what was a nearly 52-minute match. He eliminated 10 of the 40 men who entered. But Lawlor’s most impressive feat in the entire Battle Riot, might have been surviving Jake Hager’s ankle lock for more than two minutes at the end of the match with out submitting.
In fact, it was the ankle lock that ultimately led to Hager’s loss. Lawlor tried to relieve the pressure of the ankle lock by pushing himself onto the top turnbuckle. But Hager wouldn’t let go. Just as Hager looked as though he may put Lawlor over the top by the ankle, Lawlor used Hager’s momentum against him and was able to pull him over the top and to the outside.
“The top combat sports athlete in the world is here in MLW and now I get what I so greatly deserve and that is a shot at the very best whenever “Filthy” Tom wants it,” Lawlor said in the ring afterward. “I want to change that L in MLW and make it stand for “Filthy” Tom Lawlor.”
Surprises, Veterans and More
The Battle Riot included all the usual Major League Wrestling names you’d come to expect. But CEO Court Bauer promised surprises. He promised MLW originals. He promised Hall of Famers. And he delivered.
In the first surprise of the night, Tony Schiavone was joined at the broadcast position by Matt Striker, who made his return to MLW.
The match included many athletes who generated huge reactions from the fans, including Kevin Sullivan, the Spirit Squad (Kenny Doane and Mikey Mondo), Swoggle, Davey Boy Smith Jr., Konnan and the Blue Meanie.
Battle Riot Elimination Order
1. Brody King eliminated by Tom Lawlor (submission)
2. Kevin Sullivan eliminated by Tom Lawlor (submission)
3. Samu eliminated by Lance Anoa’I (over the top rope)
4. Swoggle eliminated by Tom Lawlor (submission)
5 & 6. Kenny Doane and Lance Anoa’I eliminated by Barrington Hughes (pinfall)
7. ACH eliminated by Rey Fenix (pinfall)
8. Konnan eliminated by Barrington Hughes (pinfall)
9. Fallah Bahh eliminated by Pentagon Jr. & Rey Fenix (over the top rope)
10 & 11. Rey Fenix and Pentagon Jr. eliminated by Fallah Bahh (over the top rope, momentum)
12. Kotto Brazil eliminated by Tom Lawlor (pinfall)
13. Rey Horus eliminated by Barrrington Hughes (over top rope)
14-18. Jason Cade, Jimmy Yuta, Fred Yehi, Richard Holliday, Barrington Hughes eliminated (Cade, Yuta, Yehi, Holliday threw Hughes over the top rope, but Hughes’ momentum carried them over the top rope as well)
19. Teddy Hart eliminated himself (over top rope when he landed a moonsault onto Yuta, Yehi, Cade, Holliday and Hughes)
20. Vandal Ortagun eliminated by Tom Lawlor (submission)
21. Mikey Mondo eliminated by Tom Lawlor (submission)
22. Lloyd Anoa’I eliminated by PCO (over top rope)
23. Blue Meanie eliminated by Homicide (over top rope)
24. PCO eliminated by Tom Lawlor & Simon Gotch (over top rope)
25. Homicide eliminated by Sami Callhan/Michael Patrick (over top rope)
26. Davey Boy Smith Jr. eliminated by Sawyer Fulton & Leon Scott (over top rope)
27. MJF eliminated by Tom Lawlor (over top rope)
28. Joey Ryan eliminated by Simon Gotch (over top rope)
29. Leon Scott eliminated by Jake Hager (over top rope)
30. Michael Patrick eliminated by John Hennigan (over top rope)
31. Simon Gotch eliminated by Jake Hager (over top rope)
32. Drago eliminated by Jimmy Havoc (over top rope)
33. Leo Bryan eliminated by Shane Strickland (over top rope)
34. Sawyer Fulton eliminated by John Hennigan (pinfall)
35. Jimmy Havoc eliminated by Shane Strickland (over top rope)
36. Shane Strickland eliminated by Sami Callihan (over top rope)
37. Sami Callihan eliminated by Tom Lawlor (over top rope)
38. John Hennigan eliminated by Jake Hager (over top rope)
39. Jake Hager eliminated by Tom Lawlor (over top rope)
Winner – “Filthy” Tom Lawlor
MJF Wins World Middleweight Championship
Major League Wrestling established its first World Middleweight Championship and pitted Maxwell J. Freidman vs. Joey Ryan for the title. MJF ended up taking the victory, but not before getting a real taste of the essence of Joey Ryan.
After a superkick and a near fall, Ryan pulled one his signature lollipops from the crotch area of his trunks and shoved it into MJF’s mouth. Ryan seemed to have the momentum, but MJF pulled the referee in front of him, distracting Ryan long enough for a poke to the eyes. MJF had been working over Ryan’s arm and shoulder the entire match. With Ryan blinded, MJF took advantage with a package shoulder breaker to score the pinfall and claim the World Middleweight Championship.
Kotto Brazil defeated Myron Reed
In our opening bout, Kotto Brazil was looking to pick up another victory after recently seeing a long MLW losing streak come to an end. The two middleweights were looking to impress League officials, knowing their bout was going on right before the highly-anticipated World Middleweight Championship match.
Brazil and Reed were very evenly matched. In fact, early on they were often caught utilizing the same maneuvers at the same time, including a nasty collision when both went for a flying cross body block.
It looked like the red-hot rookie Reed had all the momentum and was putting himself in position for the victory. Reed nailed Brazil with a massive cutter as Brazil bounced off the ropes. But the native of Haiti was able to kick out at two. Reed later hit another cutter, this time a counter to a suplex. But Brazil followed that up with his version of a running sliced bread called “By Any Means” and it came virtually out of nowhere to give Brazil another win and some momentum moving forward in MLW.
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