In a brand new joint partnership between Count Out and LWOPW’s Wrestling With Edwards, Scotty Edwards and Ryan Neitzey come together for the good of charity to see which wrestling fan can watch the most wrestling matches by the end of the year.
This is their story.
Ryan: Hey Scotty, so I’ve been scrolling through my timeline recently and I’ve seen that you’ve been tracking your 2021 wrestling matches. What, you think you can watch more wrestling matches me?
Scotty: Kind of? I am ready for competition Ryan, even if I have zero confidence in actually beating you. But for charity, it’d be worth it.
Ryan: Modest huh? Well, I’ll take your zero confidence and raise it tenfold, when I show you what real sitting on the couch wrestling is like! And sure, we can do this for charity. After the year all had, I think charity would be a great thing to do, as long as I win naturally.
Scotty: Wouldn’t that still be zero confidence?
Ryan: Look man, you think I spent my time learning math or studying wrestling?
Scotty: Fair point. But charity it is! Why not make a wager that doesn’t send my poor self bankrupt?
Ryan: Of course, you think all of us wrestling fan personalities are making money? Pfft. A deal’s a deal then. Who will be representing?
Scotty: The Jed Foundation -- I believe mental health is something of real importance to me, so watching more wrestling to you to benefit them seems like a major win for all parties involved.
Ryan: Sadly I have to agree with you, this one time. Mental health is extremely important for everyone and in some cases, watching wrestling has provided me the escape from the year of 2020.
Scotty: What’s your charity?
Ryan: As someone has recently called Atlanta my home, I believe it is important to provide that same warmth and safety to all. That’s why I’m representing The Atlanta Children’s Shelter. They provide free, quality day care, emotional support, an educational curriculum for homeless children, and focused social services for their families. In recent months, Atlanta has been so kindly to these human beings and it was heartbreaking to read, but that’s a story for another day. The tale I’m telling today is how I’m going to beat you in this race.
Scotty: I love the sound of that. This is going to be such an enjoyable battle throughout the year and while I do hope to see myself come out on top, I would be happy to support the Atlanta Children's Shelter if not. It’s really a win-win for me.
Ryan: You keep thinking that Scotty because I’ll turn that win-win into a lose-win, where I’m on top of the mountain and you’re in the trenches of defeat. *evil laugh* Ahem, how bout we talk about our February Matches?
Scotty: I’m in. Let’s do it.
Ryan's Match 3 ~ Finn Balor vs. Pete Dunne: NXT TakeOver: Vengeance Day, 2/14/21 - 4.00 Stars
My third best match of February was Pete Dunne vs Finn Balor at NXT: Vengeance Day for the NXT Championship. Finn Balor’s 2nd reign with the title has been phenomenal and this is one of those matches that help prove it. Balor’s new hard style has been a boon to his career. Who needs the Demon when Balor is cool again? Pete Dunne more than held his own as well, showcasing his technical, dirty style to us all. This was probably Dunne’s best match since the pandemic began. These guys left it all on the line and I can’t wait for what they next have in store.
Scotty's Match 3 ~ Syuri vs. AZM: Korakuen Hall, 2/13/21 - 4.25 Stars
When it comes to discussing my third favorite match of February, you will notice there is likely to be a theme with my entries moving forward. Stardom has become my favorite source of professional wrestling and their performers continuously lock me into their greatness week after week. So, my third match is the battle between Syuri and AZM for the SWA Championship. If you listened to my podcast to start the year, I took the bold claim that AZM would be the company's MVP this year. Well, this was the match that made me feel I could be on to something. What these two were able to do in their equaled near greatness, landing on my list with a 4.25 rating as AZM’s impressive high-speed style mixed with the incredible striking of Syuri made for one of the best matches all year long. Syuri has made the SWA title feel so important in just a few months and that is a huge credit to her.
Ryan's Match 2 ~ Johnny Gargano vs. Kushida: NXT TakeOver: Vengeance Day, 2/14/21 - 4.00 Stars
For me, Johnny Gargano vs Kushida was the 2nd best match of February. And I’m super glad it was. Going into this match, I thought we were going to get The Way/Dexter Lumis shenanigans which would have bogged down this match immensely. However, we didn’t get that. Instead, we got two wrestlers who went out there to prove who was better. We had two wrestlers that showcased why we should not only care about what they are doing but why they deserve to be here in the first place. Kushida was once one of my favorite wrestlers in New Japan but since moving to America, his star sadly diminished in my eyes. But this was a return to form and I want more.
Scotty's Match 2 ~ Johnny Gargano vs. Kushida: NXT TakeOver: Vengeance Day - 4.25 Stars
I love that we have these two matches as our second favorites of the month. A credit to the story they told. To me, this was the match that not only reminded people Johnny Gargano was indeed “Johnny TakeOver,” but also the match that finally allowed KUSHIDA to show the NXT world who he was as a performer. This was a match that had you on the edge of your seat due to the possibility of KUSHIDA winning the NXT North American Championship and Gargano continuously kicking out and escaping any submission presented to him. Ultimately, it was Gargano who came out the winner and that may have slightly hurt the match, but they told such an incredible story that it was still worth being at the top of my February list.
Ryan: How dare you pick my match as your 2nd choice?!
Ryan's Match 1 ~ MSK vs. Grizzled Young Veterans: NXT TakeOver: Vengeance Day - 4.25 Stars
Carter and Lee were wrestling for years and I don’t think they gave a better performance in any other wrestling match than this one here. This was the star-making performance. This was my potential match of the night going in and it was the match of the night coming. The mix of styles between MSK and GYV is what this sport is about. Speaking of Grizzled Young Veterans, can we talk about how great of a team they are? Their moveset, their tag team moves, their fluidness all shine through in this match and showcased just how great of a team they are. They aren’t two random dudes who want to emulate the old style. This is their style and they will SOOOON be getting even better to come, mark my words.
Scotty's Match 1 ~ Giulia vs. Starlight Kid: Korakuen Hall 2/13/21 - 4.5 Stars
Before All-Star Dream Cinderella, this was far and away my match of the year. There’s something special when a confident, final boss-styled champion faces an ultimate underdog who is considered by the champion to not be in their league. Giulia vs. Starlight Kid for the Wonder of Stardom Championship was exactly that and more. Giulia started this match off confident as ever, no-selling Kid like she couldn’t touch her any given day. But as the match progressed, Kid grew confident and came back at Giulia with everything she had, leading the champion to have to try and diminish who her character was by ripping at the mask of Kid. By the end, the champion had too much in her bag of tricks to get outdone and left #AndStill, but there was more from there. She cut the mask of Kid off following the match to really add salt to