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31 Days of Wrestling (12/18/17): Killshot vs. Dante Fox, Hell of War


Welcome to the 31 Days of Wrestling, ladies and gentlemen. Once again, we're at that point where we take a look back at the past 11 months of pro wrestling (and as much as possible, the last month as well) and cherry-pick one match for each day of December from a list of bouts that defined the year in our beloved sport. Most matches will be good, while some may not be; what matters is that they helped build the perception and reputation of the kind of wrestling 2017 produced for us.

Today, we take a look back at one of 2017’s most brutal matches—Killshot vs. Dante Fox in Lucha Underground’s Hell of War.


Killshot and Dante Fox are two guys that, as One Direction would put it, have a whole lot of history. They were brothers-in-arms in the Middle East, where they were part of the same elite unit. From there, however, their paths diverged—Killshot was able to come back home in one piece, but Fox became a prisoner of war and was nearly left for dead until a couple of soldiers managed to rescue him. Feeling resentment over the way his comrades left him, Fox swore revenge—and that’s what we saw play out in Lucha Underground.

Both men spent most of the season in each other’s crosshairs, with Fox picking up the win for some semblance of closure. That wouldn’t last long, however, and soon enough they found themselves opposing each other once again. Killshot’s early exit in the Cueto Cup was thanks to Fox, who went on all the way to the quarterfinals only to be repaid by Killshot in kind. This led to Dario Cueto booking the two in a Hell of War match for Ultima Lucha Tres—the show’s first-ever take on the Three Stages of Hell-esque concept. What we got was a half-hour display of violence and storytelling, and Ultima Lucha Tres’ best match.


From the minute that the bell rang, these two tried their very best to annihilate on another. However it seemed like Dante Fox had the slight edge from the start, maneuvering around Killshot’s every move and putting him on the back foot. This was an excellent bit of continuity from their previous match, showing how Fox had Killshot completely scouted. A couple of minutes later, and Fox managed to pick up the first fall, throwing Killshot through a pane of glass to get the blood flowing.

We then saw one of the greatest comebacks in the show’s history unfold, as Killshot fought back to keep himself in the match. With weapons allowed once again, the masked warrior brought out some more dangerous items—a table wrapped in barbed wire and a steel chair—as he fought to survive. Killshot’s refusal to die led to Dante Fox slowly getting frustrated, and before long Killshot managed to even the match one apiece. Thus, the third chapter was necessary—an ambulance match. Both men fought their way all around the Temple, eventually ending up above at the band area. A tense standoff resulted in Fox falling demise, leading to Killshot picking up the victory and closing the books on what was a grueling match.


Close friends turned enemies isn’t anything groundbreaking in professional wrestling. We’ve seen this happen so many times through the years that it’ll take something special to make people remember it, but that’s exactly what this match was. Lucha Underground has made a name for itself pairing excellent wrestling with captivating storytelling, and look no further for proof than this match.

*****

31 Days of Wrestling is Smark Henry's way of celebrating the matches that helped define wrestling in 2017.

Read our previous entries:

1. The Okada/Omega Trilogy
2. Roman Reigns vs. The Undertaker (WrestleMania 33)
3. The Mae Young Classic Finals
4. Billy Suede vs. Jake De Leon (Wrevolution X 2017)
5. WarGames
6. Prince Puma vs. Pentagon Dark (Ultima Lucha Tres)
7. Fatal Four Way for the WWE Universal Championship (SummerSlam)
8. Manami Toyota's Retirement
9. Jinder Mahal Wins the WWE Championship
10. Roman Reigns Tries To Take The Torch (No Mercy 2017)
11. Hanzello Shilva vs. Aldrin Richards (MWF Balikbayan 2017)
12. Tetsuya Naito vs. Kenny Omega (G1 Climax 27 Finals)
13. The Implosion of #DIY
14. Ubusan ng Lahi (PWR Vendetta 2017)
15. The First (and Second) Women's Money in the Bank
16. Cody Rhodes Wins the Ring of Honor World Championship
17. The Beginning of the Zo Train Era

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