1 Brandon Youngblood vs. 9 Miles Lucky
Displayed on the PRIME*View is a length of rope, knotted without any regard to pattern, rhyme, or reason. Almost impossible upon first glance to untie the contortions that someone has formed. There is then a sound of footsteps on pavement hurriedly approaching the puzzle, and a pair of hands protruding from a sweatshirt begin to unravel the monstrosity in a fast-forward pace. Once undone, the rope begins to quickly fray and begin to form the shape of a bird.
As the hands vanish into the distance, the rope’s handiwork morphs into feathers, beak, and spindly legs. A coo reverberates from the PA system as it takes flight straight into the air, only to immediately come crashing down into the pavement.
As the bird slowly writhes on the ground in agony, splayed out with its life slowly leaving its just-formed body, a whispering yet shrill voice calls out.
Happy pigeon day.
Queue the opening muted guitar plucks of “Play God” by Sam Fender.
Nick Stuart: And here we go! Miles Lucky soon to arrive in the ring. Will he have what it takes to knock off the #1 seed in the Rolo bracket tonight?
Richard Parker: Who knows, but one thing’s for sure, he’s the #1 seed in giving me the willies! I heard a rumor that this young man survives on a steady diet of office supplies, and his frame isn’t doing anything to make me doubt it. Hey, hide that pen, Nick.
Nick Stuart: Well, Rich, he doesn’t look like much from the outside. But his performance over Bryan Williams last week definitely has the rest of the backstage impressed. And that includes his opponent tonight.
From behind the curtain emerges the shattered pieces of a children’s toy in a skin suit, a peculiar look on his face due to the reaction of applause that surrounds him. He has certainly earned his stripes with the PRIMEates from ReVival 1’s battle, but does not seem too sure how to receive the praise. Placing his palms on his temples, he slinks toward the ring while seemingly preventing his head from falling off his neck.
Nick Stuart: A real clash of styles to look forward to in this one.
Richard Parker: You aren’t lying. One who’s studied the sport since the training manuals were etched in cave walls, and one who simply took his wrestling inspiration from H.H. Gregg.
Nick Stuart: I think you mean the famous serial killer H.H. Holmes, Richard.
Richard Parker: No, I’m saying Miles learned how to fight in an electronics store.
Miles, with hands still placed on his head, slides underneath the bottom rope and slowly gets to his feet. Dropping his arms to his sides, he retreats to a corner and begins to pick at a small hole in his jeans as his music fades out.
Seconds later, we hear the sounds of a sudden heavy drumbeat. A trio in quick succession follows. The synthesized drone of ‘Abandon Streets’ by Jordan F pulses with a rising tension, the seconds causing a buzz to rise through the crowd. The tempest is rolling in. A sudden downsurge. The synths rise in tone.
Richard Parker: I hate this song.
Nick Stuart: Why’s that?
Richard Parker: Every single time I hear it now, I get excited that it might be the Miami Vice guy coming out for a special appearance. But it never is. Just Brandon Youngblood every time.
Nick Stuart: You have to stop setting these expectations. We couldn’t even get Brad Garrett to make an appearance and he’s right down the hall.
Screaming white light bathes the entire entrance area, the PRIME*View flickering through the assorted highlight package of Brandon Youngblood. The audience responds in kind with a bellowing of cheers for the PRIME legend brought home, growing louder as he appears. Throwing back the curtain, he powers towards the ring, barely visible through the blinding light. His eyes are fixated on the ring, his face remaining stoic as the fans begin to roar.
Moving down the aisle, Youngblood’s focused demeanor seems completely detached from his surroundings. Walking across the ringside mats, he slowly stalks his way to the stairs. Each climbing step forward stabs the steel, his left hand grasping the ring post as he takes his first pace across the apron. Moving between the ropes, he brings his head down and slackens his limbs before exploding out of the stretching of his shoulders. Peering towards the crowd, Brandon’s expression does not change.
Nick Stuart: The Tower of Babel once again looking stoic, obviously laser focused on taking care of business in his goal for the Universal title.
Richard Parker: Well, he’s already made it past the power of love, Nick. Now he’s got to defeat the power of the new ALP: Arms, Legs, and uh…Punching.
Nick Stuart: Love my job.
Youngblood casually clasps the top ropes on each side of his designated corner as he rests his back against the turnbuckles, his eyes focusing towards his opponent, his glowering burning a hole right through them. Ashley Barlow, sensing no need to check for any foreign objects due to the lack of elbow or knee pads from either competitor, awaits the music to die down and calls for the bell.
Nick Stuart: Miles Lucky wasting absolutely no time trying to catch Youngblood off guard, immediately charging in and attempting to take out his legs right as the bell chimes!
Richard Parker: Already wanting to take the ‘L’ out of ALP!
Nick Stuart: I don’t think so, Rich. The eccentric competitor is barely able to lift him, but hits an effective inverted atomic drop.
Richard Parker: Well, guess I need to change the ‘P’ in my definition.
The shot to the groin is just enough to stagger the PRIME Hall of Famer, conveniently allowing for a slight kneel in which Miles uses as a boost for a headscissors takedown. Finding a groove in using Youngblood’s body against him, he plants a Nike Decade on his sternum and trampolines in the air, falling backwards land with an unforgiving thud. Apparently not satisfied with the first bounce, Miles repeats the process and the sound of 180 pounds crashing into a ribcage repeats across the MGM Arena.
Aware that keeping the bigger man on the ground might be the key to victory, Miles takes a running start to rebound into the ropes. However, just before he launches into a third senton, Youngblood is able to instinctively lift his knees upon hearing the approaching footfalls. Unfortunately, Miles wasn’t targeting his chest again with this one.
Richard Parker: OOF! Lucky just plopped down right on Youngblood’s head!
A collective “ooooooooooooooooh” erupts from the crowd, as the back splash was nearly enough to flatten Brandon’s nose.
Nick Stuart: That’s certainly what you have to watch for with Miles Lucky. Completely unpredictable, and that seems to have worked to his advantage there! Miles now continues on the offensive as he scales the turnbuckles, and what…what is he doing?
The camera view shifts to Lucky, a pigeon-esque perch at the top rope, who is shouting at the woman seated next to the bell to inform him how long the match has been going on.
Richard Parker: First time for everything, I guess. Who would have thought someone would have wanted the time from the timekeeper?
Nick Stuart: And now he seems to be counting down on his fingers! Again, very unorthodox, as it appears Miles has plotted down his offense to the very second. Not exactly the best strategy, as Youngblood is beginning to shake the cobwebs!
Richard Parker: Go for the ‘P’ again, Lanky Lucky! It’s your only hope at this point!
Although Miles continues to count down to the appropriate second, Brandon Youngblood is able to rise to his feet. Once it’s time, Lucky jumps off of the turnbuckle for a palm-to-head style elbow drop, desperately trying to aim any part of his body to strike the former Five-Star Champion. It fails, as Youngblood simply dodges him. Lucky’s elbow clumsily strikes the mat, resulting in a painful self-inflicted wound.
Youngblood capitalizes on the “timing” error and wrenches in a modified front headlock on the ground, making sure to sandwich the damaged arm between Miles’ ear and his own muscular appendage. Lucky tries his darndest to wriggle free, but Brandon is quick to adapt to any inch of leverage by shifting his weight accordingly.
Nick Stuart: This is precisely where Miles did not need to end up. Despite his high threshold for pain from his deathmatch experience, Youngblood’s ground game can both hurt you and wear you out.
Richard Parker: My heart goes out to the skeleton boy. That’s exactly what my ex-wife did during our divorce negotiations.
Nick Stuart: Judging by your Mickey Mouse watch, it looks like it worked.
Richard Parker: The succubus wasn’t able to take THAT from me, Nicholas!
Miles’ only other option is to use his free hand to begin hammer-fisting Youngblood’s head, still a little softened due to the kamikaze senton from earlier. This isn’t enough for Brandon to break the hold, but he does begin to bring them both to a standing position. That is enough for Miles to have a chance to quickly undo the knot and charge at the ropes, opting for a cross body attempt to further offset the weight advantage.
It wouldn’t work. Youngblood takes a few steps forward to catch him in midair, spins him, and plants him face-first into the mat. He then reapplies the same arm-trap headlock as before, this time from the side as opposed to the front. Brandon’s positioning does leave him blind to the fact that Lucky is only a few short inches away from a rope break, but has applied enough downward pressure to keep him from slithering to it.
Nick Stuart: Miles Lucky now almost glued to the mat, but what exactly is he doing with his feet, folks?
Richard Parker: He’s trying to slide his shoe off, Nick!
Nick Stuart: That he is, and it looks like he’s gotten it now slightly dangling off his foot. What is he…oh, wow! He’s draped the front of that early 90s sneaker onto the rope! Is this even a legal rope break?
While it’s probably not found in any rulebook, Ashley Barlow is going to count it as such. She informs Youngblood of the breach and begins her count, to which he releases the hold at 3. A bit frustrated, Brandon reaches for the upper torso to lift Miles to his feet, but is caught immediately off guard when Lucky suddenly grows tentacles and pulls his limbs into each other for a package roll up.
Richard Parker: Not enough!
Nick Stuart: Miles once again tries to sneak the offense when it’s least expected, but Youngblood is able to kick out of it at deuce.
Richard Parker: It’s the opening that he needed, though. Look at those Gumby limbs fly!
Lucky tries to capitalize on his momentum by wildly flinging hands and knee strikes to Youngblood. All of them make a bit of a mark on his opponent, but as Brandon peers down to protect his head, he takes notice of a potential advantage that he hadn’t seen up until now. Taking the risk to absorb yet another blow, he takes a giant step forward…
Richard Parker: YEOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWCH! Miles is missing a shoe from that rope break only moments ago, and the big lug just stepped on that exposed foot!
Nick Stuart: Youngblood made a split second decision to do something unpredictable as well, taking a page right out of his opponent’s own playbook! Lucky is now jumping around like a cartoon character, clutching what might just be a shattered set of bones!
Youngblood maneuvers himself into position, wrapping his arms around Miles’ midsection and lifts him high in the air, only to DRIVE him right back into the mat in a crumpled heap.
Nick Stuart: Karelin Lift! Miles’ head might have just left a stain on that canvas with that impact!
Richard Parker: Well, that’ll at least distract him from the pain in his foot!
DING DING DING
Nick Stuart: And that’s all she wrote, everyone! Brandon Youngblood is advancing to the next round after a grab bag match of tricks!
Richard Parker: I’m not sure Miles had losing this match at whatever time it is now in his strategy, Nick.
Nick Stuart: Well, once his shoe came off, it was only a matter of time before the other one was going to drop.
Richard Parker: …boo.
Nick Stuart: Shut up, Richard.