Sunday, March 26, 2017

Hardcore Hell 2017 Report from Cornelia on March 25

From Larry Goodman:

Anarchy Wrestling capped off a remarkable turnaround at the Landmark Arena with Hardcore Hell 2017, an amazing show on multiple levels. 

The building that was on life support just three shorts months ago was packed to the rafters with an electrified crowd of 275, the first sellout crowd since 2006. The atmosphere produced by a full house in this historic venue is intoxicating. It can make an average show feel special and this was no average show.

The 19th annual edition of Hardcore Hell had all the ingredients of the great big shows from the NWA Wildside/NWA Anarchy era: the blood and guts, the raw intensity of true emotions, the compelling storytelling, the psyched vibe of the locker room. It was all there.

It wouldn’t be a proper Hardcore Hell without gimmick matches, and this show had three of them, most especially, an unforgettable Four Corner of Pain that will take its place among the legendary, violent bloodbaths hosted by this historic venue.

Photo courtesy of Ken Wallace
Embedded in this storybook turn of events, was a storybook ending as Jacob Ashworth wrested the Anarchy Wrestling Triple Crown Championship from Gunner Miller. In an emotional postmatch speech, Ashworth talked about getting his start in wrestling at this building in 2005, working his way up from from security guard, to referee, to getting the crap beat out him as a wrestler. He made no mention of the neck injury that almost ended his career and the relationship problems that brought him to brink of quitting, but many in the crowd were aware of those issues.

Emcee Seth Delay welcomed matchmaker Dan Wilson to the ring. Wilson was visibly blown away by the size of the crowd and said they had been forced to turn people away. 

Jonathan Feltner was back “for one night only” as ring announcer.

(1) Rave Approved (Bobby Moore & Adrian Hawkins) defeated Jeremy Foster & Tommy Penirelli in 8:38. Rave Approved out to a “Disapprove” chant. Hawkins said they had to put up a grand to get a match because everybody was afraid of them. “We are approved and you are denied,” said Moore. Foster was returning from injury and was leaner than before. Penirelli appeared to have picked up the weight Foster dropped. Approved got heat on Foster, using a Hart Attack for a near fall. Foster was really strong with his facial expressions, fighting hard for the tag. Penirelli cleaned house but Hawkins escaped from his ankle lock and Approved picked up the win with their Discus lariat/german suplex combo. Good opener that had the crowd fully engaged.

Video segment -- “The Nightmare” Kyle Matthews is coming on April 8.

(2) Lynch Mob (Joey & Matt Lynch) defeated Monarchy (Black Baron & Prince Apollo) in Three Levels of Hardcore Hell Match to retain the Anarchy tag titles in 22:18. This was Monarchy’s rematch. Crowd was quiet in the early going (except for a “Disney Princess” chant for Apollo), though they got cooking as the match progressed. Monarchy won the first fall (submissions only) in 6:10 when Prince hit a flatliner off the ropes as Baron had Matt in a Gori Special and Prince locked Matt in the Koji Clutch. Second fall was Texas Tornado rules. Monarchy dominated most of way but in the end, Lynch Mob hit their frogsplash (Matt)/double jump moosault (Joey) finisher on Apollo at 12:38. Third fall was last men standing. Monarchy used piledrivers in stereo on Lynch Mob and nailed them with the titles but Matt beat the 10 count. Monarchy bridged a ladder across two chairs and had something evil in mind for Matt but Joey came to his brother’s rescue. Lynch Mob superkicked the ladder into Baron and tied his legs around the ringpost so he couldn’t stand. The bell rang before Lynch Mob laid a hand on Prince which was clearly not the plan. Evidently, Prince was down in the ring and referee Dee Byers called it as a shoot. It was a regrettably flat finish to an exciting and well-executed match.

Rave Approved came down from the announcer’s booth and got into a verbal confrontation with Lynch Mob. They salvaged what they could from a botched up situation.

Ryan Vega video on the big screen. Vega debuts on April 8.

(3) Tyson Dean defeated Fry Daddy to retain the NWA North American Championship in 7:10. Crowd got a bit of a Dean chant going as he was taking punishment. Dean nailed Fry with an enzuigiri as he was perched on the top and hit a superplex. They went back and forth with near falls until Dean hit his spinning neckbeaker finisher for the pin. Match was fine. Not much heat because they didn’t mean anything to the fans in Cornelia.

Hate Junkies promo on the big screen for the Four Corners of Pain. Stryknyn said he demanded the match because he would be the Triple Crown Champion if not for Iceberg. Dany Only’s referenced his real life self-destructive tendencies. “It doesn’t matter who walks out. It doesn’t matter who gets carried out. What matters is who survives. You can’t kill me because I’ve been trying long enough myself.”

Stryk gave Jacob Ashworth a pep talk. Ashworth said it was the biggest night of his career, the opportunity to etch his name besides all the others that have held the Anarchy Championship. “Tonight, it’s all about Ashworth.”

The crowd was forewarned that the next match was not suitable for children.

(4) Four Corner of Pain: Hate Junkies (Stryknyn & Dany Only) defeated Tank & Iceberg (with Jeff G. Bailey) in 11:17. Big pop for the Junkies. Bags with mystery weapons hung from each of the ringposts. The building exploded when Tank & Berg hit stereo cannonballs and the match never looked back. All four bled buckets. Junkies were first to get to the bags but they didn’t get to use the contents to their advantage. Bag number one had the dreaded skewers (infamously used Masada at Hardcore Hell 2016). Tank jammed the skewers into the top of Only’s head. Fans were shrieking in horror as the blood streamed down Only’s face. 

Tank then blasted Only with a brain cell killer of a chairshot. Meanwhile, Berg was taking the veggie peeler to Styrknyn. Only managed to jab one of the skewers into Berg’s head and spill the contents of the third bag (tacks) onto the mat. Only gave Tank an RKO into the bed of tacks. Both men were in agony with tack sticking out of their bodies. Tank pulled Only’s shirt off and gave him a Saito suplex into the tacks. Tank laid Only in the bed of tacks and gave him a 350 pound double stomp off the ropes. It was unreal. Bag number four contained a sickle. Tank sliced Stryk’s head with the sickle and ran it down the middle of back The crowd was spellbound by the sickness. Brad Cash ran out and grabbed the sickle out of Tank’s hand. Stryk blasted Tank with a chairshot to the head. At least he got his hands up. With the crowd chanting “Hardcore Hell”, Stryk speared Iceberg for the pin. This match conjured up the unadulterated violence of NWA Wildside. It was every bit as depraved as either of the Four Corners of Pain matches done during that era.

Junkies exited out the front door. The crowd gave Tank and Berg a standing ovation.
The did an angle during intermission where Team TAG (Kevin Blue & Spectra & Billy Buck) came out to make fun of the injured Gladiator Jeremiah, while he was in the ring doing autographs.

Video of Crystal Rose and Rock C were shown on the big screen. Rock C said Crystal had the title because of her. True but kind of heelish in tone.

(5) Rock C defeated Anarchy’s Women’s Champion Crystal Rose by DQ at 6:55 when Crystal kicked referee Dee Byers in the groin. Crystal played chickenshit again. Rock C dropped Crystal on her face a few times before Crystal got the upper hand. Rock C was in the midst of her comeback when Crystal kicked Byers in the jewels. This was bad and the crowd reaction said fans were not fooled into thinking otherwise.

Wilson said Crystal had been pulling shenanigans and his solution was to sign a no DQ rematch for April 8.

(6) Fan Participation Strap Match: Team TAG (Kevin Blue & Spectra & Billy Buck) defeated Devil’s Rejects (Brad Cash & Se7en) & Odinson in 15:07. Jeremiah was introduced as the special guest strapper. Team TAG came out dressed for New Year’s Eve complete with poppers. Crowd was crazy hot during this match. Buck and then Spectra got thrown to the floor with the crowd going nuts as the fans flailed away with the straps. Jeremiah got the best licks on both of them. Odinson’s power moves where in full effect. He had Blue up for the F10 but Blue’s partners broke it up. They did the deal where the babyface wrestler (Odinson) gets knocked to the floor and the lumberjacks refuse to hit him, except one fan didn’t get the memo and whacked Odinson a good one. Odinson was not a happy man. A train of hits and misses put everyone out of commission except Cash. Tank appeared. Cash went after him and Tank choke slammed him on the ramp. Team TAG took Se7en out with a pop up superkick. That left Odinson up against big odds. He dumped Blue and Buck out of the ring. Crowd went into frenzy at the sight of the straps being put to Blue. He's the guy they love to hate. Odinson blasted Spectra with The Pounce but Buck caught him with a spinebuster and prepared to do some strapping of his own. Jeremiah grabbed the strap out of Buck’s hand but Spectraclipped his injured knee. Odinson hit the F10 (F5 with added spin) on Spectra and turned his attention to the mastermind of Team TAG. Blue shot one of the poppers into Odinson’ face and Buck rolled him up for a terrific finish. What a thrill ride. What wonderful storytelling. The heels got strapped to the fans’ satisfaction. They fanned the flames of the pre-existing animosity between Jeremiah and Team TAG. Surely Cash and Tank will be continued.

(7) Jacob Ashworth defeated Gunner Miller to win the Anarchy Triple Crown Championship in 13:27. Ashworth clearly had the champion’s number until Bailey interfered. Miller was taking it to Ashworth when special enforcer Scottie Wrenn returned the favor by grabbing Miller’s leg. Miller made Ashworth suffer. Miller blocked Ashworth’s finisher and speared him for a near fall. The fans started chanting for Ashworth with a vocal minority chanting for the champion. The heat was incredible. Miller took Ashworth to suplex city. Ashworth fired back with stiff chops. Miller's CTE sent Ashworth out of the ring. Miller tossed Ashworth back and covered for a close near fall with the Miller fans claiming it was a three count. Referee Byers got speared when Ashworth moved out of the way. Ashworth hit Crossroads and second ref Darryl Hall hit the ring to make the count. The place was about to come unglued when Miller kicked out. Moments later, Ashworth hit the full nelson face plant for a clean 1-2-3 and mind blowing pop. They didn’t overdo the near falls and were able to catch the crowd offguard with the finish. Kudos to both men. They brought their A games when it counted.

An emotional celebration ensued. Ashworth’s son came into the ring and hugged his dad. The babyface wrestlers came out to congratulate Ashworth as the fans chanted “Jacob” and “You deserve it.”

Ashworth talked about his long climb to the pinnacle and how honored he felt to finally hold the Anarchy Wrestling Triple Crown Championship.

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