Peachstate hit pay dirt across the board with their 9th Anniversary show featuring Survivor Games 3.
This Survivor Games was something of a risky proposition. Four teams in a two ring War Games with elimination rules had never been done before. The probability of a confusing FUBAR situation was high. Nothing of major consequence was at stake in the undercard. With all of the starpower and PWA championships tied up in the main event, Survivor Games had to deliver and it did.
The booking was a team effort and they did a great job of laying out the story. The talent stepped up it up in the ring.
The Reckoning (Kevin Blue & Billy Buck & Zanders & Schaff) emerged victorious and in control of all of the PWA Championships. In one fell swoop, the championships moved from one heel faction (The Kingsmen) to another. No babyface has held championship gold since March when Kingsmen completed their clean sweep of the title.
Lightning did not strike twice for Sal Rinauro, the hero of the 2016 Survivor Games. Rinauro was on the verge of once again overcoming insurmountable odds, but it was not to be. The rug was pulled out as the last split second. Hearts were broken. Spirits were crushed.
The event was a box office success for PWA. Attendance was 384 including 182 all-access tickets at $20 each, making Survivor Games 3 the company’s largest gate and attendance since the March 2014 show featuring Jeff Hardy.
Fans purchasing the preshow ticket were entitled to a group photo with the Survivor Games team of their choosing plus an autographed 8X10.
(A)“Action” Mike Jackson defeated Hector Garza at 14:30 of 15 a minute time limit match. At age 67, Jackson is still wrestling an athletic, fast paced style including a tope, a huracanrana and a lucha arm drag off the top. Garza’s name hasn’t been popping up around Georgia much because he’s mostly been wrestling lucha shows in neighboring states. Jackson evaded Garza’s moonsault and pinned him with an O’Connor roll.
(B) Crystal Rose defeated Tiffany Roxx to retain the PWA Women’s Champion in 6:05. Rose is the polar opposite of her heelish ways in Anarchy. Roxx cut a quick heel promo. They worked a pretty hard pace. Roxx got close but no cigar with a swinging neckbreaker. She went back for seconds and Rose countered with the D Flat (cutthroat stunner).
Jason Boyd introduced the announce team of Scott Hudson and Nigel Sherrod.
(C) Jimmy Rave defeated Corey Hollis via submission in 12:51. Rave was formerly the top dog in Carrolton as the babyface PWA Heritage Champion. They riffed on a stomp of the arm with Hollis winding up on the receiving end. Hollis worked on Rave’s knee. Rave with a superplex for two and a huge bump on Hollis’ clothesline. Rave got his boots up on Hollis’ diving headbutt and crisply hit Dusk Until Dawn. Good match. Hollis accepted Rave’s handshake afterward.
AC Mack cut a promo noting the horrible rendition of the national anthem that opened the main show.
(1) Simon Sermon defeated AC Mack in 5:27. This was the third match of a fun mini program. Sermon’s flamboyant entrance with the angels wings get up got a big pop.
Mack got a lot of offense. They played off the finishes of their first two matches as each man scored a near fall with a roll up using the tights. The action moved to the second ring for the finish. Mack went for a top rope double ax and nutted himself on Sermon’s knees. Sermon demolished Mack with the Manchester Driver. Crowd was energized. Very entertaining.
(2) Pandora & Merica Strong defeated Ventress & Brooklyn Creed in 8:11. Pandora’s introduction of former arch-nemesis Strong as her mystery partner popped the crowd bigtime.
Creed threw a fit. Her facial expressions may have been the best thing about the match. She wanted no part of Pandora until Ventress softened her up. Creed gave Pandora a hair mare and a basement dropkick before turning it over to Ventress for the grunt work. Ventress hit a wickedly painful looking jumping splash and a Vader bomb that looked terrible. Strong took the hot tag. A pair of Ventress clothesline didn’t faze Strong. She planted Ventress with a Samoan drop. Creed jumped in to make the save. Pandora pounded Creed and tossed her out. Strong press slammed Pandora on top of Ventress for the pin.
(3) Former PWA Heritage Champion Tyson Dean defeated Brady Pierce in 7:43. The PWA crowd doesn’t readily respond to newcomers and they knew nothing of Pierce. The returning Dean received a warm welcome. They opened with a nifty grappling sequence. Dean used a snug hammerlock, which seems to be a lost art. Dean got the best of the exchange. Pierce took a TO and baited the crowd. Back inside, Pierce ran Dean’s shoulder into the post. Dean sold the shoulder but Pierce never followed up. Dean slipped out of Pierce’s powerslam, hit a spinebuster and went for his finisher. Pierce escaped but missed a high boot and Dean hit the spinning neckbreaker the second time around. A technically sound match hurt by the crowd having no real investment in the outcome.
(4) Referee vs. referee: Triston Michaels (with Bill Behrens) defeated Terry Hudgins a loser can no longer referee for PWA match in all of 57 seconds. Behrens got annoyed with Hudgins’ glad handing with the fans. Said it was like watching a zombie movie. BB said he didn’t trust any of the PWA referees. Hudgins said he had a ref for the occasion and introduced Jeff Morton, looking all business and badly in need of a shave. Morton found brass knucks in Triston’s shorts. Triston tried to bum rush Hudgins as soon as the bell rang. Hudgins side-stepped, removed the neckbrace that Triston has been wearing for months and bounced his head off the turnbuckles a few times. Behrens jumped up to distract Hudgins. Meanwhile, Morton handed Triston the knucks and it was lights out for Hudgins. The knuck shot looked unexpectedly great.
Postmatch- the reveled in the success of their skullduggery. Triston made it clear his neck was just fine and abused announcer Jason Boyd.
(5) Survivor Games: The Reckoning (Kevin Blue & Billy Buck & Zanders & Schaff) defeated P-Dog’s Posse (P-Dogg & Shane Noles & Michael Stevens & Zac Edwards) and The Kingsmen (Tommy Too Much & Logan Creed & O’Hagan & Kyle Matthews with Bill Behrens) and AJ’s Army (AJ Steele & Sal Rinauro & Drew Adler & Ace Haven) in 51:18 to win all of the PWA Championships from the Kingsmen. Boyd did a great job of explaining the rules like they were actually important. A member from each team started the match for five minutes. Kingsmen then received a two minute man advantage (by virtue of winning the coin flip match at the last show) before the next wave of wrestlers entered for five minutes. Eliminations could take place only inside the caged ring dubbed the “Survivor Zone”. The missing piece was why Schaff (WWA4 trainee and a regular with NCW) was in the match instead of Jacob Ashworth. Noles, Zanders, O’Hagan and Adler started with the babyfaces (Noles and Adler) working as an effective unit and the heels not so much. Highlights: O’Hagan and Zanders taking double hiptosses to the heavens and Adler hitting a DDT/vertical suplex combo on the hapless heels.
PWA Heritage Champion Tommy Too Much entered for Kingsmen and was immediately pinned after Adler’s jumping knee strike. Behrens berated T2M, bemoaning all the money had spent. BB got in T2M’s face one time to many and T2M laid him out for the biggest pop of the night thus far. Fans were trying to high five T2M as he left. Tommy was not in the mood.
Stevens, Buck and Rinauro entered the fray. Furious action in both rings now. Matthews entered for what should given Kingsmen the man advantage but only evened things up due to the quick elimination of Too Much. Matthews cleaned house with a loaded mask. Haven, Schaff and Edwards entered. Haven launched a spinning roundhouse kick from halfway up the cage. Creed entered the match. The Kingsmen banded together and Creed pinned Buck with the full nelson faceplant. Blue, Pose and Steele were the last group to enter. Blue attacked Steele as he came through the entrance way and left him lying in a heap on the floor. Creed and Noles were both bleeding.
Schaff made quick work of P-Dogg with a powerbomb. then eliminated Adler with a torture rack neckbreaker. The guy is a beast. Zanders rolled Edwards up. The circus spot of the match saw Haven give Zanders a cutter off the top of the cage drawing a “that was awesome” chant which is a rarely heard in Carrollton. Noles pinned Haven after ramming him into the cage. Creed eliminated a badly compromised Noles with a choke slam. Noles was a bloody mess. Steele finally made it into the ring, landing punch after punch on Blue. Steele first pinned O’Hagan then eliminated Zanders after a deadlift german suplex. Creed entered the cage with Steele and shut the door for a mano y mano confrontation. Creed hit a splash off the top rope but Steele kicked out. Steele then applied a testicular claw and powerbombed Creed for the 1-2-3 and huge pop. Matthews tried to fly from the top of the cage. Steele made the catch and eliminated Matthews with a picture perfect black hole slam. So much for the Kingsmen. New champions would be crowned. Schaff waffled Steele’s back with chair shot and pinned him. It was down to Stevens, Rinauro, Blue and Schaff. Rinauro and Stevens joined forces against Blue but Schaff quickly came to the rescue. As Blue and Stevens were battling on the top of the fence, Schaff sent Rinauro hurtling into the cage causing Stevens to land crotch first on the door. Blue then pinned Stevens with the Air Raid Crash. Blue and Schaff showed Rinauro no mercy. Schaff racked Rinauro. Blue was celebrating prematurely and didn’t see Rinauro reverse out of it with a crucifix pin. Schaff continued to beat on Rinauro as Blue tried to prevent the refs from getting him out of the cage. Blue locked in a submission. Fans were going nuts for Sal to hang on. Blue and Rinauro went back and forth blocking each other’s signature moves. A top rope battle ensued. Rinauro superkicked Blue and both men collapsed to the mat. They traded blows in a state of complete exhaustion. Blue gave Rinauro a uranage for a close near fall. Blue hit the Air Raid Crash and Rinauro kicked out at one! Blue was in panic mode.
The crowd chanted for Rinauro. He started wailing on Blue with new found energy. A series of moves dropped Blue to the canvas. The end was at hand. As Rinauro went for the superkick, Blue countered with the Air Raid Crash, stunning the crowd with a pin out of nowhere.
Match had the blood and spectacular moves a top notch War Games demands. Tommy Too Much’s turn was a shocker. Schaff made an impressive debut and was booked super strong. The closing minutes were thick with drama and emotion. The finish was one hell of a swerve. When Sal kicked out at one, the crowd thought for sure he had the match won.
Blue was announced as the PWA Heritage Champion, Buck & Schaff as the tag champs and Zanders as the No Limits Champion.