Kid Lykos Storms To Victory – SUPER STRONG STYLE 16 – DAY THREE
What has just happened? What did we witness?
PROGRESS Wrestling have once again pulled off another triumph, as Kid Lykos is crowned the Super Strong Style 16 champion of 2023 and now becomes the number one contender for the Men’s World Championship. On this evidence, Spike Trivet should be concerned.
In a stunning climax to this year’s tournament, Lykos, and former PROGRESS Men’s Champion Mark Haskins showed that UK independent wrestling isn’t just alive and kicking but can provide live sports action entertainment to match anything that may be seen in the UK this year.
However, after that mild spoiler alert, let us return to the start of the third day of Super Strong Style 16 and reflect upon how even an absent and much loved host can provide us with great wrestling. Simon Miller had already said he had a prior engagement in Las Vegas, much to the fan’s clear disappointment, but he presented us with his Simon Miller’s Ups and Downs Battle Royale – and what a royal battle it was. Ten who had given of their best during the previous two days assembled with the aim of being the last one to be thrown over the ropes.
The match was wild, chaotic, with action in every part of the Electric Ballroom, and will need to be watched on DEMAND a few times to see everything, but as (in order of elimination) Charles Crowley, Maggot, Bullit, Big Damo, Robbie X, Man Like Del Boy aka Man Like Dereiss, Leon Slater, and Shigehiro Irie, departed, we were left with Nick Wayne, Tate Mayfairs, Rampage Brown to focus on. Tate had a brief moment of delusion, but had not actually disposed of former PROGRESS Men’s and ATLAS Champion, Rampage, and as the winner, Brown, in Simon’s Miller’s own words, received “a warm fuzzy feeling in their tummy”.
And finally a deep breath, as we returned to the tournament. Luke Jacobs, former ATLAS Champion, and Mark Haskins, former Men’s World Champion had their eye on a place in the final. The expected hard-hitting match ended with an exquisite sharpshooter by Haskins to give him the submission. “This is PROGRESS – This Is Haskins” as he exclaimed after the bout.
Luke Jacobs has never lost a tournament in PROGRESS Wrestling before, but with his two brutal matches with Rampage Brown and ShigehIro Irie there can be no doubt that this was one match too many for Jacobs, who no doubt will continue to go from strength to strength.
Next up, was the second semi-final, where Kid Lykos came out strong with a sense of looking to rectify the injustice heaped upon Will Ospreay in the quarter-final by Nathan Cruz, another former, and indeed the first, PROGRESS Men’s World Champion. There was certainly more emotion shown here and a form of redemption appeared as Lykos overcame some chair shenanigans and gained the winning pin with a classic roll-up.
Nathan Cruz has now started to show revitalised colours in PROGRESS Wrestling and the locker room has been put on notice that he’s not here to make up the numbers, but to show he has a claim to what he feels is his right at the very top of PROGRESS Wrestling.
We were then introduced to a world’s first ever CLOCK STRIKES MIDNIGHT match with the recently declared Disney-loving Iron Queen Alexxis Falcon looking to show Nina Samuel that magic beats cynicism every time. As the clock struck midnight, so the stipulations of the match changed swinging through Singles, Tables, First blood, Submission, Last woman Standing
And finally, of course Death match. After total engagement with each stipulation it was fitting that Alexxis used a clock as the final weapon in ultimately gaining the winning pin.
Today, it was truly the Alexxis Falcon Show, but respect for both women was shown loud and clear by the fans at the packed Electric Ballroom.
A very sweet touch occurred after the interval, with long standing PROGRESS fan James Crossan being the winner of the beautiful Super Strong Style 16 one of a kind belt.
The calm of the interval was soon shattered by one of the loudest receptions seen at the Ballroom for some time as the Swords of Essex returned. This was no mere emotional reaction – this was a deep, warm welcome to one of PROGRESS’s legendary tag team champions, and a sense of redemption was in the air as Will Ospreay and Paul Robinson entered the ring, with their fellow Essex native Callum Newman.
A sense of sympathy entered the arena as it was very clear that the remaining members of CPF, Danny Black, Maverick Mayhew and Joe Lando had entered a new world. With a highly motivated Paul Robinson, an angry Will Ospreay after yesterday’s issues with Nathan Cruz and a clearly ambitous Callum Newman, the remaining members of CPF had it all to do, but whilst they gave it everything, they came up short against the revitalised Swords of Essex, with Ospreay getting the pin against Mayhew.
The return of the Swords of Essex was complete, and the return of another favourite element of PROGRESS Wrestling was hinted at as Robinson reminded everyone that he was still the PROTEUS Champion.
That said, what a match and if the welcome reaction was load, it was surpassed by the salute to the victors.
Next came a curious affair, created by Connor Mills having spent the last two days showing huge disrespect to the PROGRESS Men’s World Champion, Spike Trivet, and certainly inflamed by Trivet and Bullit intervening in the previous day’s tag team title match depriving Sunshine Machine of their long-held belts in aiding the Smokin’ Aces. Whatever Dominatus Regnum stands for, it isn’t love and respect.
Spike was clearly not at his best after what appeared to be an injury to his ankle, the Vulture and Sovereign Lord overcame the odds in this non-title match. Dominatus Regnum are not to be messed with.
Despite Mills’ confidence, it was ultimately Trivet’s cunning manners that triumphed, and so finally we came to the culmination of the search for his next challenger – the winner of this years Super Strong Style 16.
In a remarkable opening, we had huge applause for the referee, with Nigel McGuinness completing his major input into this year’s tournament by donning the black and white shirt.
The final did not destroy anyone’s expectations. Haskins dominated the early stages, with Lykos failing to find that any of his moves making impact.
After a number of near falls from Haskins, the former PROGRESS champion quickly became a frustrated figure, with Lykos showing tenacity and determination to not give up and fight for an opportunity he has worked so hard for.
Kid Lykos quickly turned the match on its head and with the support of Nigel McGuinness, he acrobatically flipped off the top of the turnbuckle to score the victory, and was crowned the 2023 PROGRESS Super Strong Style 16 winner.
Kid Lykos announced amidst great emotion that a victory at Super Strong Style 16 was a win for everyone. He is now intent on finishing the story of the Sovereign Lord, Spike Trivet and stated that the rest of Dominatus Regnum should fear Lykos as he now awaits his championship opportunity.
And that was that.
PROGRESS now take a rest in the UK until August when they return, after a joint DEFY show in Toronto, for a double header with the UK-debuting DEFY Wrestling from Seattle USA, on the weekend that AEW All of Nothing takes place.