PROGRESS Wrestling hosts their annual Super Strong Style 16 (SSS16) tournament. It’s one of the most loaded independent wrestling tournament of the calendar year and this year features a whole host of WWE contracted talent as well as some interesting grabs from lucha and the US indies. With that said we will run down each competitor in the tournament this year
AAA star Aerostar was a surprising addition to the SSS16 field but a welcome addition. On his day he is one of the most death defying high fliers in the world and has performed for some of the top companies in the US as well as Mexico as he has performed for Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG), IMPACT Wrestling, Lucha Underground and Major League Wrestling (MLW)
Spencer is an independent wrestling veteran who debuted back in 2002 on the Canadian indie scene. He mostly found success with Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling (ECCW) during this time. In 2018 he made the move south to wrestle for the likes of DEFY Wrestling where he has found success and began to make a name for himself on a bigger scale. Now he looks to make his impression on the UK at SSS16 and he has the perfect chance to show off his skills in the first wound when he takes on David Starr
Chris Brookes is the UK’s biggest homegrown star that isn’t currently contracted to a major promotion. Whether it be for his work in CCK or his newer faction Schadenfreude he has been a part of some great tag teams and cool factions that fans either love or love to hate. With Kid Lykos now retired Brookes will have to go it alone in PROGRESS and a win in SSS16 will be a good first step.
Smashmouth Chris Ridgeway is a rising star in the UK independent wrestling scene. Heavily influenced by shoot style wrestling he can hang with the best of them on the mat and when it comes to striking there are few that hit harder. That combo makes Ridgeway stand out from the pack and a dangerous proposition for any opponent.
Daga has always been tipped for greatness. His time in Mexico was spent proving himself in AAA and having really good matches. In 2017 he made the decision to work outside of Mexico and has been wrestling all over the world since then. In 2019 he has started to move into the upper tier of indie workers and a good showing in SSS16 could be a big positive for his career.
Darby Allin was a standout member of the EVOLVE roster that was tipped to be a future world champion. His daredevil ways make him reminiscent of Jeff Hardy and he has a similar underdog charisma and enigmatic personality that draws fans to him. Now signed to All Elite Wrestling he is not long for the indies but will look to leave his mark during SSS16.
David Starr has been one of the standout performers of 2019. His work in Over The Top Wrestling (OTT) and Westside Xtreme Wrestling (wXw) has been fantastic as his promo work and character work have been second to none. He has long been a great worker in the US scene but is now a dominant force in European wrestling. He dropped an absolutely amazing promo ahead of the tournament that is MUST WATCH
The former Zema Ion is best known for his time in IMPACT where he was a former two-time X-Division Champion as well as tag team champion. He has also been one of the most underrated guys on the US indie scene during that time having great matches in AAW Pro Wrestling (AAW) and was rumored to have joined the WWE recently.
Ilja Dragunov took over wXw after years of toiling away and fighting his way up the card. Dragunov’s wars with WALTER are classics and established him as a star in European wrestling who has now joined NXT UK. His wrestling style revolves around never giving up and absorbing pain and pushing through the pain to continue fighting. He is relentless and Unbesiegbar which poses a huge problem to any opponent
The Irish Ace Jordan Devlin has been killing it in Ireland’s OTT for years now and has been proving himself as one of the better performers on NXT UK ever since the show’s debut. Devlin used last year’s SSS16 to get himself over in PROGRESS and since then has had some killer matches in the company and comes into this with the aim of replicating his Irish success in the UK.
Aussie Arrow Kyle Fletcher is most known as part of the tag team Aussie Open and the Fight Club: PRO stable Schadenfreude. It would make sense to consider him a tag specialist, especially considering the fact he currently holds three tag titles, but Fletcher is a fantastic singles wrestler when he has to be. His recent matches with the likes of Jushin Liger, Will Ospreay and PAC has reminded us of this. His tag partner Mark Davis has found singles success and now it’s the time for Fletcher to follow suit.
NXT superstar Kyle O’Reilly is a man that should need no introduction. As a star for NJPW, Ring Of Honor, Pro Wrestling Guerilla and now NXT he has found much success in wrestling. He is a former ROH World Champion, former PWG World Champion and a tag team champion in NJPW, ROH and NXT he has managed to find success everywhere he’s been and now he looks to find similar success in PROGRESS
Lucky Kid is a rising star in Wrestling right now. He has become a popular star in Germany’s wXw after years of hard work with his recent 16 Carat Gold win solidifying his spot as a main event level star with wXw. With his unique charisma Kid has become a fan favorite in the UK through his work with Fight Club: PRO (despite being part of heel faction Schadenfreude) and Breed Pro Wrestling among others.
Robinson got his spot in SSS16 by holding PROGRESS management hostage. Robinson was tag team champion along with Will Ospreay and refused to defend the titles unless he got to enter SSS16. Robinson is a vile man who only finds pleasure in hurting his opponents. Once a fresh faced high flier he is now one of the dirtiest brawlers in the UK.
The Kiwi Buzzsaw won this tournament two years ago. At the time Banks was on the rise as a singles star and would inevitably topple Pete Dunne and British Strong Style to win the PROGRESS Championship. Now a heel the Travis Banks of today is much different than the Banks who won the tournament. This cowardly man who hides behind TK Cooper and NIWA is still a tough proposition for any opponent but has fallen a long way from the highs of two years ago.
The Carolina Caveman was a well known competitor on the US indie scene for years with his marathon matches for Carolina Wrestling Federation Mid-Atlantic as their Heavyweight Champion for over 1000 days becoming infamous. He was also a successful competitor for IMPACT having won the X-Division Championship three times as well as the tag titles. An alumni of PWG and AAW he now makes his way to PROGRESS as a WWE superstar and is ready to show PROGRESS and the UK what they were missing.