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Ruthless Roundtable: PWR Terminus 2015


Welcome back to Smark Henry's Ruthless Roundtable! For those who don't know, the Ruthless Roundtable is a prediction series we do wherein Smark Henry writers share their thoughts and predictions on upcoming wrestling events.

We're going with a much smaller lineup here than usual (because no one else was in the office when we made this), so it'll be me (Anthony) and my buddy Mark De Joya (MDJ) you'll be hearing from today. That's quite lonely, so we've also added our own office house elf, Buezzy, to share his thoughts on PWR's last show of the year.

Will "Classical" Bryan Leo end 2015 with the PWR Championship still in his First World claws? Can Jake De Leon and Bombay Suarez take down the Royal Flush once and for all? Will SANDATA finally break through and earn his first career win? Who will reign supreme in the first ever Path to Gold match? And who will earn the right to fly the Filipino flag in an inter-promotional match with the Malaysia-based MyPW?

We've got a lot to talk about as we head towards PWR Terminus, so let's get this started!

*****

Peter Versoza vs. SANDATA



Anthony: At PWR Live last November, SANDATA became the 1 in 1-5 when he ate another Petegree, allowing Peter Versoza to finally put a mark in his W column. After ending the past two shows with the upper hand over his former partner, P to the V is on a roll, and nothing seems to indicate that it’s going to come to a halt at PWR Terminus. That makes me want to place my bets on Peter Versoza coming out as the winner here, once again asserting his mastery over his foe.

Buezzy: Ngayong si SANDATA na lang ang may pinakamahabang losing streak sa PWR, sigurado akong hahanap siya ng paraan para manalo. Sa tingin ko mas motivation iyon kaysa sa pagiging kampante sa momentum. Hindi lahat ng streaks (winning streak man o mean streak), nagtatagal, Anthony. ‘Yung kay Undertaker at sa Golden State Warriors nga, may 1 na sa loss column eh. At, yes, #WalangForever.

MDJ: I don’t think people give enough credit to Peter Versoza for being the best pure athlete in PWR today. He can do things literally nobody else can. That top-rope Harlem Hangover he pulled off at PWR Live? That’s a one-of-a-kind move, na. Don’t let his 1-5 win-loss record fool you—the man is the real deal.

Having said that, there’s a lot more to being a star than talent. Heart matters too. And apologies in advance to Rederick Mahaba, but nobody has as much heart as SANDATA does. He genuinely cares about doing well in the ring, and that little tantrum and walk-out we saw after he lost his sixth straight match might be the best thing that’s happened. SANDATA’s snapped, fellas, and that’s going to be the start of great things for him.

Anthony: While it’s true that a desperate man is a dangerous man, and that SANDATA has snapped, I don’t think that’ll be enough to get him the W here. We’ve seen this kind of promise from SANDATA before, with him resolving to come out stronger to win his next match. He’s gone on to lose those matches as well. Both men are skilled enough in their own ways, but Versoza has the results (fine, it’s just one win more than SANDATA, but it’s still a win!) to back him up. I just hope that he doesn’t get ambushed by some Domex promo girl again.

Smark Henry Says: SANDATA finally walks out of the ring with his first win in PWR

*****

Jake De Leon & Bombay Suarez vs. John Sebastian & Main Maxx



MDJ: In my heart of hearts, I desperately want Jake De Leon and Bombay Suarez to win this one. Those two are the very foundation of PWR and are much beloved backstage. But I just find it so hard to root for the two when they’re sporting a collective 0-7 win-loss record since last May’s Wrevolution X. Main Maxx looks refreshed and rejuvenated since shocking us all with his return at Renaissance, and John Sebastian is always a dangerous out. I’m calling a win for the Royal Flush via the Dead Man’s Hand.

Anthony: I hear you, MDJ. The Royal Flush have been at the top of the PWR mountain, and they’re lording it over the roster with an iron fist. While they had a minor blip at the ending of last PWR Live, that’ll just make them want to assert their dominance even more. Main Maxx is performing at, uh, maxximum level ever since coming back, and while the Ace let Ralph Imabayashi slip through last time, he’s out to prove that his appointment as the Royal Flush’s ace is no joke. Meanwhile, Bombay Suarez and JDL have been on a horrible streak. They’re talented, yes, but for some reason it hasn’t been getting the results they want. I see the Royal Flush picking this one up, but expect shenanigans to help them put one over Bombay and JDL.

Buezzy: Shenanigans can only go so far. Siguro naman sa dinami-dami ng sneak attacks at dirty tactics ng Royal Flush, may naihanda ng cheat sheet sina JDL at Bombay laban sa kanila. 

MDJ: Kahit na. Cheat sheets and strategies will only take you so far when you’ve got “Classical” Bryan Leo masterminding a counter-strategy against you. Expect Main Maxx and John Sebastian to walk into this match with the X’s and O’s perfectly mapped out for them, and expect them to end the night with their arms raised in victory.

Smark Henry Says: The Royal Flush out-thinks JDL and Bombay to win it

*****

Hair vs. Mask All Out War: Mark D. Manalo vs. Apocalypse



Anthony: Is it too late for the Apocalypse to say he’s sorry? It looks like it, as the bad blood between Mark D. Manalo and him has resulted in this match. This has been months in the making, dating back to last August when the Apocalypse took out Kanto Terror and lacerated his eye. Manalo’s been out for blood ever since, and he’s finally getting his chance this Saturday.

Here’s the thing, though: for as much as the Revo-Nation loves Mark D. Manalo, an All Out War match plays exactly into the masked monster’s strengths. Apocalypse has proven time and again that he’s willing to drag his opponent to hell with him, using whatever weapons are available to beat people into a bloody pulp. This is a man who once sent Main Maxx into a short hiatus after a brutal Last Man Standing match, and once took out the rest of the Royal Flush barely breaking a sweat. I see Apocalypse taking this one, and thus, we’re going to see a shaved Batangueno on Saturday night.

MDJ: I get where you’re coming from, Anthony, but cheap slapstick comedy aside, Manalo is a shocking savant in the ring. I don’t think anybody—not Jake De Leon, not Mayhem, not Bombay Suarez—has ever exposed “Classical” Bryan Leo the way he did when he came out to answer the PWR Championship Open Challenge at PWR Live. The All Out War format plays to Apocalypse’s strengths for sure, but Manalo can go. He isn’t pretty to look at, but he can ground the Masked Menace with his submission game. Apoc has never faced a technical master in the ring before, and is gonna get thoroughly outwrestled. My money is on the Pride of Batangas Mark D. Manalo at Terminus this weekend.

Buezzy: Medyo hindi ko gusto ito, pero sa tingin ko, si Apocalypse ang mananalo. Wala na yatang makapipigil kay Apoc. Si Vintendo nga, ibinuhos na ang buong #PUSO nung PWR Live, pero kinapos pa rin eh. Walang duda, haharapin ni Mark D. Manalo ang hamon at kakayanin niya lahat ng ibabato sa kanya. Pero higit pa sa puso ang kakailanganin niya para patumbahin si Apocalypse.

(But I must say, wala ring duda, when push comes to shove, ika nga, malay natin, maging saksi pa tayo sa mas barakong Manalo.)

Smark Henry Says: The Apocalypse crushes the Fighting Promdi and takes his hair

*****

Path of Gold (Participants: Jake De Leon, Bombay Suarez, John Sebastian, Main Maxx, James “Idol” Martinez, Rederick Mahaba, Peter Versoza, SANDATA)



Buezzy: Isa-isahin natin ah: Medyo matagal nagpahinga si Bombay sa wrestling. Medyo maikli pa ang ring experience ni R. Mahaba. Medyo mananagot pa si Main Maxx kay JDL. Medyo kakapusin yata sa Idol Supplements si James. Medyo mayabang si John Sebastian (pero magaling… pero mayabang pa rin). Medyo magdo-double-duty din sina Peter at SANDATA.

So sino ang manok ko? Kung 
championship caliber lang din naman ang pag-uusapan, tataya ako kay Jake de Leon. Medyo injustice pa rin na isang gabi lang PWR Champion si Senyorito. He deserves one more title run.

MDJ: I’m in the same boat as Buezzy in going through the process of elimination. 

JDL, Bombay, SANDATA, Maxx, Sebastian, and Versoza are all pulling double duty at Terminus, and while I know they’re all in fantastic cardiovascular condition, I seriously doubt they’ll have anything left in the tank for a match as intense as this. Rederick Mahaba is a fighter, but awfully green in the ring; I didn’t see enough from him at Live to make me think he’s got what it takes to be a top contender—let alone the athletic conditioning.

That leaves one man, and he just so happens to be the single undefeated talent in PWR today: From the Network, James “Idol” Martinez. Hindi ako open-minded sa business, but I am certainly open-minded to the power of the Idol Supplements. 2-0, baby.

Anthony: For all we know, Path of Gold could take place before the Royal Flush match or the SANDATA-Versoza match, thus ensuring that each man gets to start this match at 100%. We don’t really know how Mr. Sy has lined up the card for Terminus, but it’ll be interesting to see this dynamic play out. Will the Royal Flush conserve energy in their tag match to prepare for this match? Will someone be battered and bruised after Path of Gold, leaving them easy prey for a later match? We don’t know, and it makes Mr. Sy’s match placement a very, very interesting thing to look forward to.

Having said that, this is anyone’s match to win right now. Like our dear house elf’s prediction, I’m also going to go with Jake De Leon. Yes, I know I predicted that JDL loses his other match, but this is where I see his misfortunes come to an end. Snap a losing streak, win a shot at a championship. Two birds hit with one stone.

MDJ: Fine, I’ll go with JDL, but that’s if he plays the game right—that means no unnecessary risks, conservation of energy, keeping the engine running at low gear until it’s time to redline.

Smark Henry Says: “The Senyorito” Jake De Leon’s misfortunes come to an end as he outlasts seven other men on the Path of Gold

*****

#1 Contender’s Match for the MyPW SEA Title: Chris Panzer vs. Miguel Rosales



Anthony: Wow. In what has been a landmark announcement for PWR, Mr. Sy has booked a match to determine who gets to fly to Malaysia to compete with a representative from Malaysia Pro Wrestling (MyPW) for the interpromotional SEA Title. No matter which way you look at it, this is big, and is a great move for PWR. In addition to strengthening international relations, this also gives one guy the opportunity to strut his stuff abroad (and maybe gain a few new fans in the process).

All that’s left to settle is who will be representing the Philippines. Chris Panzer is coming off a loss last PWR Live to his nemesis Ken Warren, but we’re sure he’s delighted at this unique opportunity. Rosales, on the other hand, is coming off a win, and seems to have found his place in PWR as one of PHX Champion Ken Warren’s hired guns. He’s managed to turn heads with his suplex-based offense, and that should pose problems for Panzer. Both men have the support groups to back them in this match, so expect that to make an impact on the result. I’m thinking that Chris Panzer wins this match and gets the chance to represent the Philippines abroad. Some of you may think that the full-blooded Filipino Rosales deserves to represent us more, but I think Panzer will do just enough to put him away. Also, it’s not as if this would be anything new. Heck, our Azkals football team is half Fil-foreign, why shouldn’t we have that in wrestling as well?

MDJ: I've always had a soft spot for Miguel Rosales. Between him and Joey Bax in the Fighters 4 Hire, Bax may get the chants, but Rosales brings the highlights. If anyone can match up pound-for-pound with Chris Panzer in terms of striking skills, daredevil top-rope dives, and pure grappling skills, it’s him. And don’t forget, Anthony—I’ve always been very vocal in the PWR Power Rankings over Panzer secretly being the biggest under-achiever in the company. He’s lost more often that he’s won, he’s fallen short against the big guns like Mayhem and Bombay, and while he may be a crowd-pleaser in terms of looks and talents, I have to wonder if he’s got the intestinal fortitude to represent the Philippines in a match with stakes this high. My bet is for Miguel Rosales to fly our flag proudly in Malaysia.

Buezzy: Nakaka-proud namang isiping maipapakita natin sa ibang bansa ang galing ng PWR wrestlers. Kahit sino namang manalo sa kanilang dalawa, panalo na ang PWR at ang Pilipinas eh. Haha. It all boils down na lang sa kung kaninong skill-set ang mas lamang.

Hirap mamili ah! May brawler ka in Rosales, pero may all-around athlete ka in Panzer. It’s a mark-out moment sa bawat suplex ni Miguel, pero ka-abang-abang naman ang bawat opensa ni Chris.

Hmmm… Sasang-ayon ako kay MDJ. Tataya rin ako kay Miguel Rosales kasi pagdating sa 
world stage, minsan eh dominance ang kailangan nating ipakita. Kumbaga, Panzer has all it takes, no doubt, but Migs would take it home.

Smark Henry Says: Miguel Rosales pulls off the shocking upset and flies the Filipino flag all the way to Malaysia

*****

PWR Championship Match: Ralph Imabayashi vs. “Classical” Bryan Leo (c)



Buezzy: Show after show after show, lagi na lang Royal Flush ang may huling halakhak. Kaya naman breath of fresh air ika nga ang ending ng PWR Live, nung sina Ralph, Bombay, at JDL ang last men standing sa ring. Sa Terminus, palagay ko, hindi handa si CBL sa bilis at sa unique offense ni Ralph. Magugulat na lang siya (at ang Royal Flush), boom, Sonic Crusher, 1… 2… 3! #NewChamp! #NewChamp!

MDJ: Buezzy naman, masyado kang mabilis madala sa mga one-hit wonder. I’ll be the first to tell you that I’m a massive fan of Ralphamania. I love his sneaky charisma. He knows he’ll always be outsized in the ring, but makes up for it by trying harder than anyone else in PWR. But “Classical” Bryan Leo is the consummate strategist, and you can bet your life that he’s grilling John Sebastian, who’s faced Imabayashi thrice, for tips on how to beat him. Leo is embarrassed over how close he came to losing his belt to Mark D. Manalo when he was surprised and unprepared, and I’m 100% certain he isn’t going to let that happen again. You may be able to beat The Classical One when you catch up off guard, but a well-prepared Leo is an unbeatable Leo, and he’s had the last three weeks to gameplan for this match. By hook or by crook, I’m predicting "Classical" Bryan Leo to retain at Terminus.

Anthony: Bryan Leo has been one of the best strategists we’ve seen work a PWR match. He’s going to see that Sonic Crusher coming from a mile, which will take away the element of surprise it has. I’m agreeing with MDJ here—CBL has all the resources in the world to help put on a successful title defense here. As much as I love Ralph Imabayashi and his style, I can’t help shake off the feeling that “Classical” Bryan Leo is going to come into this match very, very prepared, and that’ll be what helps him keep the belt.

Smark Henry Says: “Classical” Bryan Leo retains, but Ralph Imabayashi will steal the show with yet another Match of the Night

*****

What do you think, Henrinites? Do you agree with our predictions? Let us know! See you at PWR Terminus tomorrow, December 19 at the iAcademy Auditorium!

Doors open at 6 p.m. with bell time at 7 p.m. Regular tickets can be purchased at the gate for P350 each, while VIP tickets will go for P400.

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