The Cage of Death is Combat Zone Wrestling (CZW)'s biggest show since 1999. It always features the Cage of Death match, a steel cage with various weapons and objects littered in the cage. Electrified cage walls, cacti, tables, light tubes, glass, thumbtacks, baseball bats, barbed wire and all other weapons and objects have been used in it. The first two were simple either pin and/or submit to win cage matches with all weapons and objects littered in the cage. The Cage of Death also has different formats and stipulations: singles, tag team, or gauntlet. Each Cage of Death features two or more wrestlers in the cage. For Cage of Death 5, 6, and 7, WarGames stipulations were used.
Cage of Death II took place in Sewell, New Jersey on September 9, 2000. That night the Cage was host to two matches. In the first match, then CZW World champion Lobo defeated Zandig to retain his title. Big Japan Pro Wrestling (BJW) wrestler Ryuji Yamakawa had hit the ring during the match and Zandig (who had spent lots of time that year wrestling for BJW) had lost due to Yamakawa's interference.
Due to their upcoming annual COD show at the end of 2001, the company needed a bigger venue and made their debut in the ECW Arena, formerly Viking Hall and currently The Arena. The venue was the first sellout in the building since the era of ECW, and hundreds were turned away from the biggest show in the promotions history.
Ty Street wrestled Mongoose to a no-contest. Jeff Rocker ran in and then Nate Hatred and Nick Gage came out and destroyed everyone. Nick Gage and Nate Hatred defeated a masked team suspiciously looking like Jay and Mark Briscoe (who wrestled under masks presumably to get around the selectively enforced Pennsylvania age restrictions). NWA Southwest workers Joey Corman defeated Samir and Brad Michaels in a 3-Way Dance. Corman pinned Michaels after hitting the spin doctor. In what had been billed as a match with Zandig and Glen Osbourne; Osbourne, Lobo, and Danny Rose all got involved in a big brawl with Zandig until Greg from Tough Enough made the save.
In an elimination match, The S.A.T. defeated Chris Divine, Quiet Storm and Brian XL. The order of elimination: Joel Maximo (by Divine), Divine (by Jose Maximo), Jose Maximo (by XL), Brian XL (by Red), Quiet Storm (by Amazing Red, after the Spanish Fly by the Maximos and the Infrared Splash).
Jon Dahmer and Fast Eddie Valentine defeated Chris Ca$h & GQ. Trent Acid defeated Ruckus to win the CZW/BJW Junior Heavyweight Championship. Initially, both men were counted out, but the match was restarted by Zandig with a ladder involved. Acid won the match with the Yakuza Kick, but was put through a table by Big Japan's Winger, who then walked off with both belts. Johnny Kashmere defeated Menace with the Cradlebreaker. Mad Man Pondo defeated Z-Barr - The returning Pondo got the pin after hitting Barr with a splash on top of a chair and his patented Stop Sign. Adam Flash defeated Nick Berk and Nick Mondo in a Falls Count Anywhere match to win the CZW Iron Man Championship.
Inside the Cage of Death, were a jackhammer, a cactus, garbage cans, a truck hood, and tables; and was topped by a scaffold. Justice Pain defeated Wifebeater to retain the CZW World Heavyweight Title as both men crashed through tables in the ring off of the scaffold that topped of the cage of death.
As the match finished, the Arena lights went out. In a kayfabe angle, former ECW owner Todd Gordon, along with Blue Meanie, Pitbull #1, Rockin' Rebel, Rocco Rock were in the ring, trashed CZW, with Gordon calling the fans "ingrates" for chanting CZW. After they abused Justice Pain and Wifebeater, the CZW locker room crashed the cage, and the lights went out again. When they came back on, The Sandman was standing in the middle of the ring.
Sandman then turned on his former ECW compatriots. At the end Sandman stripped off his ECW t-shirt for a CZW shirt and had a beer with Zandig.
Cage of Death IV took place on December 13, 2002 in Philadelphia, PA at the Viking Hall and saw John Zandig defeat Lobo in a Cage of Death match for the ownership of CZW. This was the last Cage Of Death to use electricity as a hazard (Lobo was electrocuted early in the match).
The main feud going into the Cage of Death match was between Team Zandig John Zandig, Nick Gage, Ian Knoxx, Wifebeater, and Lobo and the HI-V The Messiah, Adam Flash, Nate Hatred, Trent Acid, Johnny Kashmire, and B-Boy. Although Team Zandig's sixth member was New Jack, he turned on team Zandig and joined the HI-V. The Cage match also differed from the previous year, in that there were two rings; one of them was surrounded by the cage, and the other was filled with "one million" thumbtacks (the actual amount has never been verified). Above the two rings was scaffolding walkway on which the wrestlers could walk on. The match started with two members of each team, and every 90 seconds a wrestler, from either team, entered the match according to the number they drew before the match started. Elimination occurred when both a wrestlers' feet hit the floor.
Cage of Death VI took place on December 11, 2004 in the ECW Arena where there were two Cage Of Death matches. One saw Team Ca$h (Chri$ Ca$h, J.C. Bailey, Nate Webb, and Sexxxy Eddy) defeat Team Blackout (Ruckus, Sabian, Eddie Kingston, and Jack Evans). The other match saw the battle of The H8 Club as Wifebeater and Justice Pain took on Nate Hatred and Nick Gage. For Cage of Death 6 there were eliminations that would happen when a wrestler would hit the arena floor much like Cage of Death 5 the year before, the difference being that the tag team titles were hanging on a scaffold stretched across the length of the top of the cage overlooking the two rings.
In the 4 on 4 elimination match wrestlers were eliminated when they hit the floor. The cage surrounded two rings, and there was also a scaffold on top of the cage where Maven Bentley and Robbie Mireno were holding the CZW Tag Team belts.
The other Cage of Death match was a Fans Bring the Weapons match inside the cage. Wifebeater and Justice Pain won after Nick Gage turned on Nate Hatred by driving him through a pane of glass covered in salt and thumbtacks. Immediately after the match Pain and Gage turned on Wifebeater.
Cage Of Death VII took place on December 10, 2005 in Philadelphia, PA at the New Alhambra Arena in Philadelphia, PA. Where H8 Club & John Zandig defeated The Tough Crazy Bastards (Necro Butcher and Toby Klein), and Joker. This Cage of Death was a big octagon constructed around the ring with barbed wire around the top. Lots of other hardcore elements like a spider net of barbed wire, thumbtack turnbuckles, barbed wire bats and also a pair of scaffolds and four tables placed inside the Cage. Cage of Death 7 just had standard pinfall and submissions after all combatants entered the cage.
Cage of Death VIII took place on December 9, 2006 where in a Loser Must Retire Fans Bring the Weapons Cage of Death match, Nick Gage pinned Zandig in a four way that also involved Lobo and LuFisto (in a last minute addition). The cage was an all new design made of wood and barbed wire featuring platforms, barbed wire spider nets, glass, and other assorted weapons. This was the first ever four way Cage of Death match, and the first one with a female participant.
The show opened with a surprise as old CZW favorite Ric Blade came back to the promotion for his first in-ring appearance since 2004, as the referee for the Junior Heavyweight Title Match. The roof for the Cage of Death hung from the ceiling. Also hanging from the ceiling were the tables, ladders, chairs, ropes, rope ladders, and the CZW Junior Heavyweight Title.
Ryan McBride defeated Pinkie Sanchez, IWS regular Dan Paysan, Insanity Pro Wrestling's Carter Gray, and All-American Wrestling/IWA Mid-South Wrestling's Egotistico Fantastico in what may well have been the hottest match of the night to become the new CZW Junior Heavyweight Champion. The finish saw Pinkie Sanchez and Ryan McBride fighting on the ladder - both went to grab the belt and fell down, but McBride was holding the belt when they hit the mat.
In a nice touch, the promotion did its third annual Toys for Tots toy collection, with uniformed Marines at the collection box at the Arena's front door. The Arena would continue the collection at the afternoon's CHIKARA and Velocity Pro Wrestling events. Fans are encouraged to bring a new "unwrapped" toy to the Arena for these shows, as Arena management and the promotions running the venue contribute back to the children of the Philadelphia area.
In a pleasant surprise, Sonjay Dutt plugged CZW after the match and suggested he might return as he could in 2009 (with everyone waiting for the expected heel swerve that for once wasn't forced on by a promoter). 2 Girls, 1 Cup defeated The Olsens, Miracle Ultraviolence Connection, and Team Andrew to retain the CZW Tag Team Titles. Given Nick Gage's concussion at the time, expectations for this match weren't what they might have been under other circumstances. Gage won the match for H8 Club, as he hammered Ruckus at the end with at least 7 Chokebreakers at the end of the match. Ruckus was ruled unable to continue by the referee. Deranged defeated DJ Hyde in a Fans Bring the Weapons Match. Various toys used included a glass picture frame, a drum, a boat oar with thumb tacks, hand held plastic guitar, and a knife.
The Cage of Death was a double cage structure with a cage inside a cage, a roof made up of a barbed wire spider net and a scaffold topping the traditional Cage of Death. Surrounding the Cage that surrounded the ring was a platform surrounding that with tables, chairs, lemon juice, salt, sheets of auto glass and other goodies enclosed by a second cage. In the middle of That platform was a vertical wall of glass which exploded after Devon Moore took a "Mother F'n Bomb" through it. Other sick spots saw Devon Moore doing a shooting star press onto all but Zandig, Sami Callihan hitting a senton off the scaffold/spidernet through a barbed wire table on Brain Damage, and Drake Younger Russian legsweeping Danny Havoc off the side of the cage through a barbed wire board propped up by chairs. In the end, Zandig got to the top of the structure to win the match. After the match, Zandig stated that he was trying to prove that "his boys" had their Onita style "fighting spirit" back, and handed out the $10,000 to all five other competitors.