The stars from MTV’s The Challenge were on hand to support Mark Long in his huge Boca Raton Championship Wrestling (BRCW) match this past weekend.
As Monsters and Critics reported several weeks ago, Mark was scheduled to face Matt Cardona, best known as Zack Ryder by many WWE fans.
For the bout, Cardona had his ringside associate, Steph DeLander, there potentially to interfere and help him defeat Mark.
However, Long also had backup and support, as plenty of Challenge OGs attended the event, including Tina Barta, Jonna Mannion, and Cara Maria Sorbello, who brought her boyfriend- two-time Challenge finalist Paulie Calafiore, with her.
Derrick Kosinski was also there, but not just to support Mark. Derrick also made his in-ring debut, participating in a 25-man match as a last-minute replacement.
Mark and Derrick’s castmates didn’t hesitate to get in on the action either, as highlight clips arrived to show the action from the hard-hitting event.
Mark Long battles Matt Cardona and gets an assist from Challenge OG
BRCW held their Challenge Accepted event from Boca Raton, Florida, on Sunday evening with rowdy fans and Challengers there to cheer on the competitors. Among the highlight moments was two-time Challenge winner and All Stars OG Mark stepping into the ring to take on Cardona.
Cardona is no slouch of an opponent. He won almost every championship in WWE while there and continues pursuing other wrestling titles now that he’s working with different promotions.
In a clip that appears to be from early in the match, Cardona offers a handshake to Mark before trying to get in a cheap shot. However, Mark is wise to the move and catches him ahead of any strike or kick connecting.
The in-ring battle appeared to be a Street Fight or No Disqualification match, as a video clip shows a table set up in the ring corner.
Cardona’s ringside pal Steph DeLander attempted to get involved by holding Mark to allow Cardona to strike him. However, Mark avoided Cardona, who ran into DeLander, knocking her down.
Soon after, an individual is seen sneaking into the ring. It’s none other than Derrick coming in to help out his Challenge castmate and friend. He takes away a steel chair that Cardona tries to use and ultimately delivers a kick to Cardona’s groin.
Moments later, Mark tackles Cardona through the table, breaking it in half, before securing a winning pinfall in his BRCW match.
Paulie Calafiore and other stars from The Challenge get in on the action
The big event also featured the Challenge Mania Podcast crew hosting an event for fans to attend BCRW Challenge Accepted, along with a meet and greet with various Challengers.
Derrick wasn’t the only one who got involved in the match, as Mark brought his opponent to the ringside area near the crowd where his Challenge friends were seated.
As seen in the video below, Paulie got in several shots on Cardona to help out his pal Mark, as did Derrick and his Challenge Mania Podcast co-host Scott Yager.
Tina, known for her infamous punch on castmate Beth Stolarczyk on The Challenge years ago, also delivered a hit to add to the punishment on Cardona.
Derrick also made his in-ring debut in a BRCW match
Ahead of Mark’s in-ring battle, Derrick was also involved in a match at BRCW’s Challenge Accepted. He was a late replacement for a huge battle royal.
The match was a “25 man over the top rope Battle Royal” to determine an inaugural BRCW Cruiserweight Champion. As seen in some of the highlight clips below, Derrick made his entrance to some hard-rocking theme music- Last Resort by Papa Roach.
He had all sorts of in-ring and out-of-ring spots, including a move from the ring corner and absorbing chops from an opponent while on a guardrail near the crowd. Paulie can be seen assisting Derrick with a water bottle.
Based on the highlights, Derrick failed to win the championship belt but did well in his debut, showcasing his abilities in a grueling match.
A photo below also shows most of The Challenge stars posing with Mark as he held up his championship belt, presumably after the event ended. Rachel doesn’t appear in the photo but may have exited the event earlier than her castmates since she brought her kids.
Also pictured with the crew is Nicole Layog, who appeared in Big Brother 24.
Cardona teased a rematch with The Challenge star
Following the BRCW event, Cardona seemed to show respect for his opponent, but he also threw in a “CHALLENGE for a rematch,” tagging Mark, Derrick, Scott, and The Challenge in his tweet.
Mark’s match was a successful appearance for The Challenge star, who has been seen at various WWE events over the past several years. He’s also mentioned interest in possibly getting to NXT, where many of WWE’s new stars train and eventually debut in matches.
WWE is currently home to former The Real World and Challenge star Mike “The Miz” Mizanin, who appeared in several seasons of MTV’s competition series with Mark. The two seem to have maintained their friendship over the years.
Could Mark and The Miz team up for a tag team match or battle it out between themselves in the ring one day? Stay tuned, as Mark seems eager to pursue more professional wrestling opportunities.
The Challenge: World Championship episodes arrive Wednesdays on Paramount Plus.