Ralph Imabayashi reclaims gold at ‘PWR Live: Kingdom Come’

Michael Bueza
With the help of his tag team partner Rederick Mahaba, Imabayashi regains the PWR Championship after defeating Chris Panzer

TWO-TIME CHAMPION. Ralph Imabayashi regains the PWR Championship after defeating Chris Panzer at PWR Live: Kingdom Come on January 21, 2018. Photo by Michael Bueza/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – Filipino-Japanese sensation Ralph Imabayashi reclaimed gold at Philippine Wrestling Revolution’s show PWR Live: Kingdom Come on Sunday, January 21, after he defeated Chris Panzer to become a two-time PWR Champion.

With help from his tag team partner Rederick Mahaba – who served as special guest referee – Imabayashi thwarted Panzer’s valiant title defense and ended it with a senketsu, a modified piledriver.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”><a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRChampionship?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRChampionship</a>: Ralph Imabayashi def. Chris Panzer to win the title<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://t.co/VNa9xvw9k9″>pic.twitter.com/VNa9xvw9k9</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/955017329074520065?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>
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Imabayashi and Mahaba’s celebration was short-lived, however, when Miguel Rosales rushed to the ring and sent the two men packing. Rosales then motioned that his sights are now on Imabayashi and the PWR title.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-conversation=”none” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>But Imabayashi’s celebration was short-lived, when Miguel Rosales rushed into the ring!<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://t.co/jkZRYeFyez”>pic.twitter.com/jkZRYeFyez</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/955017354252922880?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Imabayashi got Mahaba to be the referee for his match after a “proposal” of sorts at the “Mahabang Usapan” show that opened PWR Live: Kingdom Come.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>Ralph then “proposes” to Rederick to become his… special guest referee at the PWR Championship match main event.<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/Ba1V3rm0hG”>pic.twitter.com/Ba1V3rm0hG</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954968713815445505?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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3 victories for Team Sebastian

That in-ring segment also featured their colleagues at Team Sebastian, who seized control of PWR last year at Vendetta.

Including Imabayashi’s PWR Championship win, Team Sebastian won 3 out of 4 matches at PWR Live: Kingdom Come.

“The Senyorito” Jake de Leon forced Brad Cruz to submit, while Peter Versoza defeated Martivo in singles competition. 

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”><a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a>: Jake de Leon def. Brad Cruz via submission<a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/lhx0QQIuzb”>pic.twitter.com/lhx0QQIuzb</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954982764452786177?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”pt” dir=”ltr”><a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a>: Peter Versoza def. Martivo<a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/1qL4h8JSon”>pic.twitter.com/1qL4h8JSon</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/955001410847830016?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Team leader John Sebastian wasn’t part of the winning circle, though, after he lost to Miguel Rosales despite stacking the odds against him.

As part-owner of PWR, he decreed he would wrestle under No DQ rules while Rosales won’t. He then announced before the match that if Rosales lost or was disqualified, he would be fired.

Sebastian used his No DQ advantage by hitting Rosales with weapons and enlisting the help of the PWR ringside crew under threat of dismissal.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>John Sebastian orders the PWR youngboys to beat up Miguel Rosales… or they’re fired! <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://t.co/bq95GMoMLn”>pic.twitter.com/bq95GMoMLn</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954984109763264513?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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But Rosales soldiered on and defeated Sebastian with his version of the F5.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”><a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a>: Miguel Rosales def. John Sebastian to keep his job in PWR.<a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/k8aBhcXDHk”>pic.twitter.com/k8aBhcXDHk</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954987144321232896?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Tag team matches

PWR Live: Kingdom Come also hosted two first round matches of a mini-tournament to determine the next challengers to the PWR Tag Team Championship, which was likewise defended on the same night. 

Erstwhile Philippine Hybrid X (PHX) title contenders Zayden Trudeau and Bolt earned their ticket to the finals after beating Kh3ndrick and Mh4rckie of the Kakaibros.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”><a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a>: Zayden Trudeau and Bolt def. Kakaibros<br><br>They advance to the finals of #1 contender’s tournament to face the PWR Tag Team Champions.<a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/ZUlFitbSFn”>pic.twitter.com/ZUlFitbSFn</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954973105641873408?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Meanwhile, Trian dela Torre and Evan Carleaux outsmarted the team of SANDATA and Dax Xaviera to inch closer yet again to PWR Tag Team gold.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”ht” dir=”ltr”>Trian dela Torre and Evan Carleaux double-team SANDATA <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://t.co/t9HBWIMrE3″>pic.twitter.com/t9HBWIMrE3</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954994995357822976?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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SANDATA and Xaviera were then attacked by Jake de Leon.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-conversation=”none” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>After the match, Jake de Leon attacks both SANDATA and Dax Xaviera! <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/o87cct5zVv”>pic.twitter.com/o87cct5zVv</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954997297296719872?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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The Network would defend their tag titles against the eventual winner of Trudeau/Bolt versus Dela Torre/Carleaux. But first, the champions went through The YOLO Twins on Sunday in a Best of 3 Falls match.

The twins got the 1st pinfall after isolating The Network’s Alexander Belmonte III and nailing the Two Night Stand on James “Idol” Martinez. But they squandered the 2nd pinfall when they were caught hitting the low blow on Belmonte.

The deciding fall went to The Network, thanks to a handy air-spray, to retain their titles.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>Air freshener saves the day! The Network (James “Idol” Martinez and Alexander Belmonte III) def. The YOLO Twins in 2-out-of-3 Falls Match to retain the PWR Tag Team Titles<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/uGJdB1CUkU”>pic.twitter.com/uGJdB1CUkU</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/955006684107227138?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Other matches

PHX Champion Mike Madrigal issued a non-title open challenge on Saturday, January 20, answered by “The Social Media Sinister” Ken Warren in his first match in months.

Their face-off went back and forth, but a sick kick to Warren’s head gradually put the match to a halt. Warren went for his Wi-Fi finisher kick, but suddenly collapsed. Madrigal then rolled up Warren with the help of the ropes to pick up the win.

Warren, who previously suffered a concussion during a live event, was then helped to the back by medics.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>Ken Warren goes for the Wi-Fi, but suddenly collapses. Mike Madrigal takes advantage with a roll-up (and his foot on the ropes) for the win.<br><br> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/QZOyUyEXq6″>pic.twitter.com/QZOyUyEXq6</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954980436538609665?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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Meanwhile, the match between the “Punk Rock Maiden” Robynn and the “Queen of Philippine Wrestling” Crystal ended in a double-countout when a wild brawl ensued between the two at ringside. 

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<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>… which ended in a double countout after both Robynn and Crystal brawled at ringside.<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a> <a href=”https://t.co/CPR8pR8ACp”>pic.twitter.com/CPR8pR8ACp</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/954974652543070208?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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The PWR crew had difficulty separating the two ladies, who had been at each other’s throats since Crystal betrayed Robynn and Martivo.

Finally, The Apocalypse made quick work of McKata.

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<blockquote class=”twitter-video” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”><a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/PWRLive?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#PWRLive</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/KingdomCome?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#KingdomCome</a>: The Apocalypse def. McKata<a href=”https://twitter.com/RapplerSports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RapplerSports</a> <a href=”https://t.co/YXHjD3E4pL”>pic.twitter.com/YXHjD3E4pL</a></p>&mdash; Michael Bueza (@mikebueza) <a href=”https://twitter.com/mikebueza/status/955008652716343296?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>January 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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At the pre-show, the Secret Council of the Trabajadores “savored” a pinfall loss by Trabajador Tres, who fell to the Revo Ranger. But they seethed when their former henchman Quatro won against their one-night-only hired gun Vintendo.

Quick results

  • Pre-show: The Revo Ranger defeated Trabajador Tres
  • Pre-show: Quatro def. Vintendo
  • Tag Team #1 Contender’s Tournament – First Round Match: Zayden Trudeau and Bolt def. Kakaibros (Kh3ndrick and Mh4rckie)
  • Robynn versus Crystal went to a double count-out
  • PHX Champion Mike Madrigal def. Ken Warren in a non-title match
  • Jake de Leon def. Brad Cruz via submission
  • Miguel Rosales def. John Sebastian; Sebastian competed under No Disqualification rules
  • Tag Team #1 Contender’s Tournament – First Round Match: TDTxECX (Trian dela Torre and Evan Carleaux) def. SANDATA and Dax Xaviera
  • Peter Versoza def. Martivo
  • PWR Tag Team Championship – 2-out-of-3 Falls Match: The Network (James “Idol” Martinez and Alexander Belmonte III) def. The YOLO Twins (Yohann and Logan Ollores) to retain their titles
  • The Apocalypse def. McKata
  • PWR Championship – Ralph Imabayashi def. Chris Panzer to win the title; Rederick Mahaba was special guest referee

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Michael Bueza

Michael is a data curator under Rappler's Tech Team. He works on data about elections, governance, and the budget. He also follows the Philippine pro wrestling scene and the WWE. Michael is also part of the Laffler Talk podcast trio.