Sunday, August 26, 2018

Return of the NWA National Championship

On October 21, 2018 the NWA will promote their 70th Anniversary show at the Nashville Fairgrounds in conjunction with Jeff Jarrett's Global Force Wrestling promotion.

Since Billy Corgan purchased the NWA he has focused on promoting matches for the NWA World Championship first with Tim Storm and now current champion Nick Aldis on their YouTube show 10 Pounds of Gold.  This show will be the first complete show under the Corgan NWA Banner.

At this show they will be bringing back the NWA National Heavyweight Championship, which will be only the second championship recognized by the National Wrestling Alliance.  No other information has a been released about how the vacant title will be filled or the design of the championship.

Once Corgan launched his version of the promotion all titles save the World Heavyweight were vacated.  I thought they would bring back the women's championship first, but I'm glad they have a second title.

Austin Idol
The NWA National championship debuted January 12, 1980 in Georgia Championship Wrestling with Austin Idol as the inaugural champion.  The title was retired in 1986 when it was unified with the NWA United States Championship.

During this run it was most recognized with Buddy Landel defeating Terry Tayler for the title at Starrcade 1985 and Tully Blachards 177 day run in 1986.

The championship was revived in 1997 and awarded to Big Slam on May 17, 1997.  On January 19, 2009 Phil Shatter defeated Crusher Hansen starting his 761 day run as champion ending on February 19, 2011 when he was defeated by Chance Prophet.  This is the longest single reign anyone had as champion.  The last recognized champion was Kahagas. 

I attended the 2009 NWA Legends Fanfest in Charlotte, North Carolina where Shatter defended his title on consecutive nights against 2 Cold Scorpio.  The first night Scorpio won the title and even did photo ops in the ring with the belt.

The second night at the beginning of the matches they announced that the NWA hadn't sanctioned a championship match therefore the title would be returned to Shatter.  However they had sanctioned a title match for that night, which 2 Cold won via count out.

Phil Shatter
You can read all about my NWA Legends Fanfest Weekend here.

Incidentally Phil Shatter would later wrestler in TNA as Gunner and current in NXT as Jaxson Ryker.

I'm very curious what the design of the championship will look like.  Part of me would like to see it be the version held by Blanchard and Shatter as shown in their photos. Here are a few of the past belt designs.

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment, read my other posts, and like my blogs Facebook page and while you're at it check out my weekly podcast The Wrestling Insomniac on the Nerdy Legion Podcast Network. 

Later Readers!

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Helter Swelter: AFA Roller Derby live report 8/18/2018

Growing up Saturday Mornings were not just cartoons there was some live action excitement in there as well.  The line up changed depending on the season but it was typically Candlepin Bowling, Monster Trucks, Roller Derby, Professional Wrestling, and Creature Double Feature.

I've played Candlepin Bowling many, many times, I've been to several Monster Trucks shows, and I pretty sure you know about my love of professional wrestling.  Roller Derby though, always eluded me mostly because it just didn't exist in Maine.

In 2006 A&E started airing the show Roller Girls, about the banked track all girls Texas Roller Derby league.  I loved this show, I hadn't seen Roller Derby on my television since the WSL Roller Jam that ran from 1999 - 2001.

This show started a resurgence on all girls Roller Derby including Maine Roller Derby based out of the Portland, Maine area.  Try as I might for different reasons I never made it to a bout.

A couple weeks back my coworker told me about roller derby being at the Lewiston Armory.  Looking into it I had never heard of the Androscoggin Fallen Angels Roller Derby before but was excited to read about their team The Inferno and their upcoming bout on August 18, 2018.  The best part was the doors opened at 5:30 pm for a 6pm opening whistle, I had time to go before work!

To my surprise I asked my wife if she wanted to go and she said yes.  So after dropping the kids at her mothers, she was taking them and their cousins camping for the weekend, he headed out for a rare night out on the town.

We got the venue about quarter past five and I saw my coworker Andrea with her family.  Doors opened promptly at 5:30 and it was only $7 for adults and I counted roughly 150 in attendance at intermission, which I think is an good house.

I love the Lewiston Armory, I have been there for many wrestling events and once in high school a full contact Karate Tournament.  The venue has a balcony on three sides and I was surprised to find the old wooden seats at are quite comfortable and did not feel crammed in at all.  We also had a great view of the whole track and all the action.

The bout was between The Infernos of the Androscoggin Fallen Angels and the Upper Valley Vixens of Twin State Derby.  The bout started just about on time, my only complaint is that we couldn't hear the MC on the PA system it just sounded like a foreign language.

They play two thirty minute periods with a 15 minute intermission.  You can read the full official rules here, but the basics are five members play at a time and scoring is accomplished in two minute jam sessions.  The jammer for each team starts at the back of the pack and works there way forward to the front of the pack and then around to the back of the pack again.  Each player on the other team they pass they score a point for their team.  Jammers can score as many points as possible in the jam session and only the lead jammer can call off the jam before the two minutes are up.

Jammers trying to break through the pack
The Inferno started off strong and jumped to an early lead but the Vixens quickly made a comeback taking the lead and never looking back.  The final score was I believe 194 - 118 in favor of the Vixens.

Being out first bout I'm not familiar with all the players but the stand outs for the Inferno's that I could tell where the jammers Seitanic Beast and Queen Bootycca.  The VIP of the game though was Jagged Little Pill on the Vixens.  She was a tremendous jammer and on two occasions I saw her score twenty points in one jam session.

All of these girls are tough and work very hard on the floor.  They are not kidding when they say it's full contact as they are constantly pushing and bumping each other jockeying for position.  Seitanic Beast tooked a wicked fall near the end of the bout and was removed from the game.  I hope it's nothing serious.

Jagged Little Pill of the Vixens becoming the lead jammer
Next time I'm going to bring my good camera but here are some shots I got with my phone.

Jagged Little Pill maneuvering around the packs to score points
I loved it and my wife really enjoyed it.  We will definitely be returning for another Inferno bout and checking out the other Leagues around the State.

Maine Roller Derby Leagues

Calling off the jam

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment, read my other posts, and like my blogs Facebook page and while you're at it check out my weekly podcast The Wrestling Insomniac on the Nerdy Legion Podcast Network. 

Later Readers!

Friday, August 17, 2018

Ric Flair's Intercontinental Championship Reign

"Nature Boy" Ric Flair is one of the greatest wrestlers in the history of professional wrestling and has always been one of my all time favorites.  I have had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Flair on a few occasions and I wrote about it here.

Through-out his career Mr. Flair has held more championships beyond being a 16 time World Heavyweight Champion.  He held numerous titles in Mid-Atlantic Wrestling & Jim Crockett Promotions and the NWA Missouri Heavyweight Championship.

In September 2005 Flair had been back in the WWE  for almost three years, in that time he had two Tag Team title runs with Batista but his last singles reign as a champion had been five and half years earlier in WCW with a controversial day as Heavyweight Championship.  At age 56 many thought Flairs days were coming to an end, and as much as I'd hoped for one more World Championship run, his days as a champion were over.

On September 5th in Oklahoma City at the Unforgiven PPV "Nature Boy" Ric Flair opened the show against Carlito in a match for the Intercontinental Championship.  This match was set up on an edition of Carlito's Cabana where Flair was the guest and Carlito spit an apple in Flair's face before the two came to blows.

Back in early 1983 Flair wrestled Carlos Colon in a controversial series of matches where Colon allegedly won and lost the NWA World Championship to Flair in a change that was never recognized by the NWA.
Carlos Colon
On this night though in just over eleven and a half minutes and much to the surprise of those in attendance Flair submitted Carlito with his figure four leg lock to capture the championship.  Near the end of this match Flair went to the top and Carlito caught him for the usual bodyslam, but Flair punched him and then came off with a blow to Carlito's head.  The crowd popped big time and Flair raised his arms in victory, it was quite a funny moment.  The crowd erupted for the tap out.

Post match Flair cut a promo about proud he was to win this prestigious championship.  That it was just as sweet as winning each of those 16 world championships.

The next night on Raw in Wichita Falls, Texas Flair would retain the title in just over 20 minutes in a rematch with Carlito winning by submission with the figure four leg lock.  Flair would then begin a five month run as champion some would say his most successful run in the WWE seconded only by his final Career Threatening run in 2007 / 2008.

He wrestled on the house shows defending the title against first Carlito and then Triple H and finally against Shelton Benjamin before losing the championship to Benjamin on the February 20, 2006 Monday Night Raw in Trenton, New Jersey.  All the time he feuded on television with Triple H and Edge.

His biggest defense of this run came in San Diego at Taboo Tuesday on November 1st in a steel cage match with Triple H.  The build for this match was excellent with Hunter turning on Flair in a tag team match and busting him open with a sledge hammer shot.  Flair begged the fans to vote for a cage match between himself and Triple H at the PPV and got his wish.

The promo package played prior to the this match was tremendous.  Flair came out second to a huge ovation from the crowd.  When I think of Ric Flair what comes to mind is the Four Horsemen, the NWA Championship, and his famous bloody steel cage battles for that championship.  This match hearkened back to those matches as both men were busted open and Flair blonde hair was soaked red with blood.

The match open quickly with both men trading blow and Flair lighting up Triple H's chest with chops.  Hunter then took over for several minutes sending Flair into the cage opening him up just a few minutes into the match.

Eventually Flair took over and sent Triple H into the busting open the game and dominating the rest of the match.  The finishe came when Flair pulled a chair into the ring and laid Triple H out with it.  He then escaped the cage getting the victory in just under 24 minutes.

I had the opportunity to see Flair live as Intercontinental Champion at a live Monday Night Raw from TD Garden in Boston on December 12, 2005.  In an Elimination Chamber qualifying match Kurt Angle defeated Flair with the ankle lock.  Sadly none of my pictures that I took with Flair wearing the belt came out well.

Flair's final championship would come one year later on November 5, 2006 at the now re-named Cyber Sunday.  Ric Flair and "Rowdy" Roddy Piper would defeated Spirit Squad members Kenny & Mikey to win the WWE Tag Team Championships.

They would lose the titles eight days later at Raw from Manchester England to Rated-RKO: Edge & Randy Orton.  I'm not sure where photo above was taken but after winning the titles Flair and Pipe teamed with the Highlanders for five eight man tag matches against The Spirit Squad across the United Kingdom.

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment, read my other posts, and like my blogs Facebook page and while you're at it check out my weekly podcast The Wrestling Insomniac on the Nerdy Legion Podcast Network. 

Later Readers!

Monday, August 13, 2018

IWE Live Report 8/10/2018 Fairfield, Maine

Finally my horrendous work schedule as allowed me to attend a local indy wrestling event.  Sadly I've missed the last three Limitless Wrestling shows because of illness and work.

This IWE show advertised a women's wrestling match and because of that I decided it would be a good night to take Addison to her first IWE show in Fairfield.  She doesn't really like wrestling like Canaan does, and neither like it like I do, but she recently asked about going.  Canaan and Alex also went with us and we met Mikey at the show.

Eric Johnson pinned BF Summers

I was told Summers is a trainee, it shows.  Johnson lead Summers through a good match that ended Johnson getting the win.

Boris Darov pinned Jeff James

I pretty sure I got the Russian's name wrong.  He called me a pig at the beginning of the match and that was funny to me but Addison was not amused.  This was a decent match and my first time seeing both of them that I can recall.  James has got a good look and in time is going to be excellent to watch in the ring.

Boris dominated most of the match and James made the fiery comeback only to get cut off and was finished with a fireman's carry into a slam.

Jasmine Hawkes pinned Lilah Dare

My first time seeing both of these ladies.  I thought it was good match, both girls worked hard and well together.  I had watched a match between them on YouTube the night before that thought this match was better.  Hawkes got the pin with a roll up and her feet on the ropes.

Triple Crown Champion: Jason Rumble defeated Angel Cross by disqualification

This was an excellent match between Rumble and one half of the Tag Team Champions Angel Cross.  Rumble pretty much dominated the match even giving a Cross a lesson in arm bars at the beginning of the contest.  Rumble got the win when Brandino Davis ran in attacking Rumble.

Chad Epik came out after intermission and cut a promo about the new talent initiative that IWE has and that next month he will be bringing in new talent.

Triple Threat Match: Brandino Davis defeated Jimmy Limits and Elite Terrell

This was great!  Limits and Terrell started teaming up against Davis at the beginning of the match before it became every man for himself.  Davis got the win pinning Limits securing a title match the next night in Brewer.

Ricky Williams pinned Frank Jaegar

It is obvious that Jeagar is very new and he should either work exceptionally hard on his punches or start throwing forearms.  I once read that Ric Flair perfect his punch by hanging a piece of string and then practicing endlessly at making it look good but never hitting the string.

Guatemalan Prince pinned Bobby Landell

Two trainees that I'm told have a feud building. I didn't expect much but was pleasantly surprised.  Landell attacked Prince from behind jump starting the match.  It was pretty high intensity with heavy bumps for several minutes.  But, in my opinion the match was just took long.  Had they cut five minutes out of it the flow would have been better.  Also Prince got the pin after his fourth splash, which was two too many. 

There was some post match shenanigans with Prince throwing himself into a bunch of folding chairs trying to hit Landell who moved out of the way.  It didn't make sense to me why it was happening.

Dog Collar Match: Mason X defeated "Big Moxie" Matt Mahoney

These guys delivered!  Brutal and stiff match that also used kendo sticks, cookie sheets, a barbed wire bat, thumbtacks and more.  My daughter thought they shouldn't be doing it as they could hurt themselves, my son was yelling for more.  In the end Mason X got the win when he choked Moxie out with the chain and the referee stopped the match.

It was a fun night of wrestling.  The best part for me was watching my daughter get into the matches because it was real to her.  She doesn't watch wrestling at home and doesn't really care for it but had recently asked about going and tonight just lined up proper.  I let her get a couple autographed photos and she got her picture taken with Lilah, Jasmine, and Rumble.

IWE has a show this Friday August 17th in Dexter and I believe they return to Fairfield on September 7th.

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment, read my other posts, and like my blogs Facebook page and while you're at it check out my weekly podcast The Wrestling Insomniac on the Nerdy Legion Podcast Network. 

Later Readers!