Sunday, July 17, 2016

Peachstate Wrestling Alliance Report from Carrollton on July 16

From Larry Goodman:

This was another highly entertaining show from Peachstate Wrestling Alliance. 

By design, this PWA event was mostly sizzle. The steak will be served on August 20. 

That’s not to say the fans felt shortchanged. The PWA crew did a stellar job of setting the table. There were compelling story directions in abundance. Booker Rick Michaels is a stickler for getting the little things that matter right. 

One thing that is surely going right is the nuclear heel heat coming from anything associated with Bill Behrens, who is giving the performance of his life as the nefarious Advisor the Georgia Athletic Commission. 

There was action aplenty. PWA No Limits Champion Kevin Blue retained his title via an outstanding match with CB Suave. The undercard was blessed with a couple of strong in-ring performances from unexpected places.

It’s old news but it strikes me every time I go to one of their shows. PWA has the most cohesive locker room anywhere in the state. Individual egos are submerged to produce the best possible product. 

Attendance at Central Elementary Gym was 180-190. It’s a great venue for wrestling. West Georgia crowds are notorious for old school heat, and that gym is LOUD by its nature.

(1) Backbone (Drew Adler & PWA Tag Team Championship Michael Stevens & Zac Edwards) defeated Sal Rinauro & Charles Zanders & Shane Noles in 10 minutes. The official was announced as Referee Number One (Mason). Behrens has installed Triston Michaels as Senior Official and relegated the other refs to numbers. The babyfaces took Stevens to armbar city. Things went from bad to worse for Backbone when Adler inadvertently leveled his partners with a tope. Adler stuck a knee into Zanders’ back to get Backbone untracked. Rinauro made a tag that the ref never saw and was then taken out of the match courtesy of a low blow from Stevens. Noles got the tag and ran wild. His offense was suspect in spots but Backbone made him look like a million bucks with their feeding and bumping. Noles kicked out a triple team combo move and tagged Zanders. He was a one man wrecking crew but eventually succumbed to a triple team combo and was pinned by Edwards. 

Postmatch -- Wicked Nemesis out with Aries Brothers to confront Backbone. Strange on the surface as the Aries were Backbone’s partners last month for the Survivors Games. Wicked said Backbone used Aries and screwed them on their payoff. Ergo, ries were coming for the Besties’ tag titles on August 20. Backbone showed fear and went out the back door. Taken at face value, the premise for Aries turning full-blown babyface was flimsy but Wicked’s delivery got it over.
P-Dogg rapped . “Put in your Facebook. Put it on your blog, I am the new thing. I am P-Dogg.”

(2) P-Dogg defeated Eric Martin in 8:02. Surprisingly good match here. P-Dogg is as technically solid as they come but I had no idea what to expect from Martin, a big kid from the Northeast trained by former ECW referee Mike Kehner. Martin’s offense is nothing special but he really gets the more important stuff -- body language, facial expressions, selling and he wrestles with confidence. Martin’s best move was an overhead press drop for a near fall. P-Dogg went on to dissect Martin’s leg. Martin sold it big and kept on selling it during his comeback. Martin cut off P-Dogg’s first attempt at the Alabama Jam and went for a diamond cutter off the ropes. P-Dogg blocked it and hit a long distance Alabama Jam for the win. 

Behrens marched to the ring with PWA Heritage Champion Tommy Too Much in redneck sartorial splendor, a masked Kyle Matthews and the incredibly crooked Senior Official Triston Michaels. After some shameless pandering, Behrens explained that Matthews was wearing the mask because Jimmy Rave had spit in his face. He said Matthews would be a nightmare and the spoiler. Behrens then said he would introduce the Gladiator as the newest member to his elite team on August 20. 

Pandora came to the ring. Behrens was highly upset by the interruption and the “Pandora” chant made it worse. Pandora reminded BB that she earned a match with Merica Strong with the referee of her choosing last time and intended to cash in on August 20. Behrens said nobody told him what to do and he would need to check his schedule. Behrens started to look at his phone. Pandora smashed it to smithereens. Behrens said Pandora would get the match sometime during her lifetime, but if she showed up on August 20, he would have her wrestled to the ground by midgets and escorted out of the building. This segment worked great because the fans absolutely hate Behrens who is wonderfully over the top in this role.

(3) Ryan Vega defeated Jeremy Foster by submission in 7:13. This was only match that didn't have the crowd engaged. It was mainly grappling. The work was OK but they needed to go out their way to establish characters and connect with the crowd and that didn’t happen. Vega was heel when he was babyface last month. Foster hadn’t wrestled for PWA in a quite a while and is a relative unknown here. He was coming off a knee injury and looked tentative in spots. Vega capitalized when Foster missed a flying knee. Vega posted Foster’s shoulder and made him tap to an armlock. 

(4) Nigel Sherrod (with Prince Akbar) defeated Ace Haven (with Amy Haven) in 8:24. Ace attacked Sherrod before he got to ring and gave him an ass beating that had the crowd rocking. As the thrashing continued, the returning Akbar strolled down to ringside. Ace’s ruthless aggression got the best of him as he speared the post when Sherrod stepped aside. Sherrod went after Haven’s shoulder with help from Akbar. Ace rallied. When he tried for a rana off the apron, Sherrod powerbombed him on the ring frame. Ace rallied again, this time with a top rope elbow but he was in agony from the shoulder injury and Sherrod kicked out. Haven kicked out of Sherrod’s Rockbottom for a big pop. Akbar got pulled of the apron by Amy and threw powder in her face. Wicked Nemesis ran down and chased Akbar to the back. Sherrod capitalized on the distraction with a piledriver for the 1-2-3. Ace showed tremendous fire, and it might have been the best singles match I’ve witnessed involving Sherrod. Not saying it was a technical masterpiece. Nobody is going to mistake Sherrod for a great athlete, but it was laid out well and had epic heat stemming from Sherrod screwing Haven last time. 

Afterward, Sherrod vented about Noles taking Rinauro for his Survivor Games team instead of him. Sherrod vowed to kick Shane’s ass on August 20. 

(5) Kevin Blue defeated CB Suave to retain the PWA No Limits Championship in 14 minutes. Best match of the night. The chemistry was right. It was an intensely competitive match with solid execution throughout and loads of cool spots. It opened with a brawl all around the ringside area. Suave launched a dropkick while hanging from the basketball rim (not regulation height). Blue used Suave's head to play a piano. It was my favorite spot the match as it covered multiple octaves. Back inside, Suave sprayed Blue with his water bottle. Suave hit multiple big moves including a pumphandle neckbreaker. Blue kicked out with the crowd getting behind him bigtime. Blue got his knees up on Suave’s senton and the comeback was on.  Back and forth blocking suplex attempts until Blue hit a suplex into the turnbuckles. Suave with a jumping knee and tornado DDT. They traded a bunch of stuff until Blue scored a palm strike for a near fall. Suave countered Blue’s finisher with a righteous version of Azrael’s Ted Bundy for a near fall. Suave grabbed a chair and had a fan ready to jump the rail on him. The cheating did not end well for Suave. Blue whipped him into the wedged chair, nailed him with the Yakuza kick and finished with the Air Raid Crash. It was the type of match that elevates the champion and the title. 

(6) AJ Steele & Pain defeated PWA Heritage Champion Tommy Too Much & Kyle Matthews (with Bill Behrens) in 13:33. The heels scattered like mice when Pain was introduced as Steele’s mystery partner. Matthews started and was having no luck at all with the much larger Steele. Matthews finally got an armdrag in and celebrated his moral victory. That was all she wrote for Matthews’ offense. Steele had Matthews positioned for the Steele City Bomb when T2M clipped his knee. The heels crotched Steele’s prone body on the post. T2M had his way with the compromised Steele. A huge AJ chant erupted. Pain jumped into the fray without benefit of a tag. Matthews raked Pain’s eyes to blind him and he mistakenly gave Steele a choke bomb. T2M and Matthews started doing a number on Pain. However, Steele recovered to level both of them and plant T2M with the Steele City Bomb. Match wasn’t pretty and it had some clunky moments but it got the job done. The finish got the biggest pop of the night. 

“House of the Rising Sun” hit the PA and out came former PWA Heritage Champion Jimmy Rave. Rave said everyone knew that he never lost the belt and was the rightful champion. Rave said he would fight anyone, anywhere, anytime. Would T2M do the same? Rather than waiting for answer, Rave slugged T2M in the mouth. T2M tried to run but Rave was all over him, tossing him to the wall and chopping the bejeezus out of him. Somehow the match was made on the spot.

(7) Tommy Too Much (with Kyle Matthews & Bill Behrens) defeated Jimmy Rave by DQ in 1:30. The champion got nothing. Rave decked T2M with haymakers and had him in the crossface in no time flat. Matthews stomped Rave for the DQ. It made no sense for T2M to be named the winner. I guess Behrens must have exercised his advisory powers. Be that as it may, it was right call for T2M to get zero offense.

Postmatch – Rave put Matthews in the crossface. That brought Behrens into the ring. Rave confronted Behrens who was on his knees begging for mercy. The crowd was going nuts at this point. Behrens gave Rave a low blow. T2M nailed Rave with a belt shot. Rave then had to endure the humiliation of taking two leg drops from Behrens before Steele made the save. 

Rave said he knew Behrens would always stack the deck and he was never going to give him a fair shot. Rave said how about a no DQ match?  

From the safety of the aisle, Behrens said he was an honest man and believed Rave did deserve a shot at the greatest champion in wrestling history. BUT he was going to sweeten the pot and make it a triple threat on August 20 – Rave vs. Tommy Too Much and The Gladiator.

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