WrestleWatch- PWA: We're Gonna Need A Montage!
5 long months. That's how long us Aussie wrestling fans have waited for our fix of high quality entertainment from the best company in the country, Pro Wrestling Australia. And a lot has changed. Life has not only gotten in the way, but it's also hit us with a superkick and a Canadian Destroyer!
Last time we were here for a PWA review, it was a different site. I was writing for Snap Mayors Media, run by the esteemed Lord Andy Coyne. Unfortunately, life got in the way for him as well, and the site is no more. I want to thank Andy for giving me the opportunity to write for him, and hope that we work together in some capacity in the future. In addition to the reviews, I particularly enjoyed a preview show we did for the finals of the PWA Premiership at the very beginning of 2021, with myself, Lord Andy Coyne & PWA commentator Andrew Rose. As nervous as I was at the start of it, it turns out I really enjoy talking about pro wrestling. Who knew?
The last time PWA were in action was, of course, right before the long-ass lockdown, in June 2021. The event was Prize Bulls On Parade. Jessica Troy defended her PWWA Championship against Sam Osborne. It was the Arm Collector vs. The Prize Bull. And after a classic match, it was a turncoat referee, John Anderson, that cost Troy the match and the championship. Troy usually has a sugar-sweet demeanor- when she's not trying to rip your arm off and beat you over the head with it- but she's had 5 long months to stew over that injustice. Where does she goes from here?
To get the fanbase ready for the big return after such a long hiatus, PWA kindly released Prize Bulls On Parade for free on YouTube! So before you read this review, you can catch up on Troy vs. Osborne, as well as a litany of other high quality bouts, right here:
The entire PWA roster has to find their feet once again. Aussie wrestling, especially PWA, has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years. Putting the pandemic aside, I firmly believe there would be some kind of TV deal in place for PWA had it been able to carry on its prior momentum uninterrupted. They had 1000 fans in the Star Casino in Sydney for a super-show that included WWE's Pete Dunne & Toni Storm. They held a massive tournament called Colosseum, which featured AEW star Orange Cassidy. They got onto FITE TV, the international home of AEW and many other wrestling and MMA companies. We had some mainstream crossover with PWA's Matty Wahlberg on Australian Survivor in 2019, and a featured spot on Beauty And The Geek in 2021. Things were coming up Milhouse!
Today, PWA broadcasts from the PWA Academy in Ingleburn, roughly halfway between the heart of Sydney and my hometown, Wollongong. Always worth the trip though, and Jax Jordan, Ben Anderson and crew do an amazing job making the training facility look great on camera. PWA Academy shows are Green Label, so we need to hold back the swears, and we're building to a larger Black Label (18+) on 3rd December at Max Watts, labelled Now We Conquer. At the Academy, four random matches will take place, with the winners of those matches advancing to a No. 1 Contenders Fatal 4 Way at Now We Conquer.
Now We Conquer. Such a fitting name. Who will follow in the footsteps of Aussie wrestling stars like Robbie Eagles, who up until very recently was a double champion in New Japan Pro Wrestling? Or PWA alumni like Grayson Waller (fka Matty Wahlberg), Persia Pirotta (fka Steph De Lander) and Indi Hartwell (fka Indi Hartwell), all of whom enjoy regular TV time on NXT 2.0 in WWE?
But we'll get to that. Today it's PWA: We're Gonna Need A Montage. Let's do this!
Pre-Show: Big Fudge def. Shay Kassidy (at 7:51)
This was a lot of fun. Fudge is perpetually over with the PWA fanbase, and well, anywhere he wrestles. I believe he's held the FWA Championship for a very long time. Fudge gets surprisingly technical throughout this one, tying Kassidy up in knots for a signficant length. Kassidy is from Newcastle Pro Wrestling, and this is only the second time I've seen her wrestle, and the first in a singles match. She has a great showing, but ultimately the experience of Fudge won out, as he hit her with the devastating Butt Punch, followed by the La Magistral cradle, for the 1-2-3. Oh, and Fudge hit Shay's teddy bear with a Canadian Destroyer for good measure. Pro wrestling, ladies and gentlemen! (***)
Now onto the main show on YouTube! This review will be a mix of my live reaction thoughts sitting ringside, along with thoughts about how it comes across as a broadcast watching it back. Our commentary team is JT Robinson, Jack J Bonza, and a debuting Piers Austin! Piers does a tremendous job as the host of Shooting The Shit Uncensored, where he interviews a variety of wrestling personalities, so I'm excited to see how he fits in here.
First, a big announcement- PWA and MCW (Melbourne City Wrestling) are having a Worlds Collide show on Sunday the 19th of December, broadcasting live on FITE! Massive news that is sure to cause some waves in Aussie wrestling!
Match 1: The Velocities (Paris De Silva & Jude London) vs. Backpain (Backman & Jack Pain) (w/ Jessie Wilde)
According to Lochie Beckley, there were some issues at the start of the live YouTube stream, and as I bring up the video to help with a little play-by-play, it starts midway through Backpain's entrance. Their Financial Simp Advisor, Jessie Wilde, is amped up at ringside, lifting dumbbells while she supports her team. Velocities are rocking super sweet new gear. Looking the business! (sorry, Slex)
Jack Pain shows off his power early, shoving down Paris from the lock-up. Paris finesses his way into a side headlock but is soon blasted down with a shoulder block. The action speeds up and Jude tags in, allowing the Velocities to hit a combination drop toe hold and dropkick on Jack. Backman in and he boots Jude down, followed by a massive military press slam on Paris! Backpain follow up with a double military press slam, throwing Jude onto Paris! I forgot how frenetic these PWA tags can get!
Paris sends Backman out of the ring with a low bridge, and tries to follow up with a plancha, but Backman catches him and rams him back-first into the apron. Hardest part of the ring (TM). With referee Hannah distracted by Jude, Jessie Wilde gets involved and hits Paris with another press slam on the apron! Backman bodyslams Pain onto Paris, and that tandem move gets a near fall. It's beat down time, and Paris is getting punished. Massive running powerslam for another long 2 count. Piers questions what Paris can have left after this extended beating.
Backman has Paris in the Stretch Muffler submission, but Paris fights out, turns it into a rana and tags in Jude! Jude's got huge dropkicks for everyone. Look out Hannah! Handspring stunner. Springboard slingblade. Jude is on fire! Standing moonsault for a near fall. Paris in, and he's immediately moving a million miles an hour, but Jack wipes him out with a spinebuster. Near fall.
Backpain go for a double slam on Paris, but Jude makes the save and hits them with a double stunner. Jude goes for a springboard, but Backman catches him in a suplex position! Incredible strength. Paris pulls Jude down into an inside cradle, and wipes out Jack Pain with a suicide dive seemingly in one motion. Backman kicks out of the cradle, and goes for the Sonny Bill Williams (Pounce) but Jude counters with a dropkick. Jude nails the Excommunicado spin kick, then tags in Paris, who hits a gorgeous Shooting Star Press for the victory!
Winners: The Velocities (at 8:57)
Star Rating: ***1/2. An excellent return to action, as the Velocities haven't missed a beat, and Backpain seem to have grown both physically and mentally since the last time we saw them. I would not be opposed to seeing the big boys as tag champs in the future. The comparison was made during the match by the commentary team, and I want to make a "we have Aussie Open at home" joke, but I don't want Jack Pain to spinebuster me to the centre of the Earth.
Post-match, the Velocities grab the mic. Jude says that it feels great to be back, and that PWA is the best wrestling company in Australia. (Damn straight). Paris says that some might not agree, and they turn their attention to MCW. They don't want to wait until the 19th of December, and instead lay out a challenge for the 3rd of December at Max Watts!
We get a video from Lyrebird Luchi. He questions what the ideal way to come back is- quickly bursting through, or taking your time. "Either way, without a gameplan, you're an idiot." He brings up the No. 1 Contender's tournament, mentioning people that deserve it- like himself- and people that don't- like Mat Rogers. He says he won't show up to PWA ready to wrestle if there's a chance he has to face Mat Rogers. He doesn't feel safe in his working environment, and he won't be on the show. Kai Drake is taking his place instead. We didn't get to see this video live, so the following match was a little confusing.
Match 2: No. 1 Contender's Tournament Match- Shazza McKenzie vs. Kai Drake
Oh, ring announcer Nick Wray does say "Lyrebird Luchi's replacement". Missed it live as Kyle was next to me yelling stuff. Bonza clarifies that if Kai wins, Luchi will advance, not Kai.
They tie up and Kai shoves Shazza into the corner. Bit of a shoving match and we can tell this is going to be a heated one! Shazza with a snapmare into a crucifix pin for an early nearfall. JT notes that Shazza has put work in during lockdown and is in excellent shape. Kai fights back with some shoulder blocks in the corner. Shazza lights Kai up with chops and avoids the return fire. She trips up Drake and hits an axe kick to the back. Innovative.
McKenzie goes for a suplex but Kai fights out with elbows. Shazza simply yanks him to the mat by his hair. Whatever it takes! Stomp to the face gets a near fall. Kai catches Shazza in the ropes and lands a series of rapid fire kicks, followed by a blistering chop. Strong suplex by Drake gets a near fall. Very aggressive tone to this match. Kai grounds Shazza with a top wristlock and applies pressure. Shazza comes back with a couple of boots and hits a sunset flip from the second rope for a close 2 count, but Kai kicks out and applies the single leg Boston crab, or the Calgary crab, if you will. Shazza makes the ropes.
Referee Nick almost gets wiped out by Drake, and Shazza takes advantage of the distraction to hit a low blow, followed by the Saito suplex. Shazza kicks Kai upside the head, then goes up top and nails a flying cross body for an excellent near fall. Shazza goes for her patented series of kicks to the chest with Kai tied up in the ropes. He blocks, so she starts kicking him in the head. Brutal! She soon transitions into the Shazzmission, Kai makes the ropes, and then Kai's partner Michael Spencer causes a distraction. Piers calls it despicable (one of my favourite words) but it is effective, as Drake hits the Michinoku Driver for the win.
Winner: Kai Drake (at 8:48)
Star Rating: ***1/2. This was very physical and intense. Shazza McKenzie has leant into a darker, more aggressive persona over the last year or so, but matching physicality with someone like Kai Drake here really hammered that point home. The result shocked me live, but with the added context of the Luchi story, it makes much more sense. Luchi back-doored his way into no. 1 contendership, and you have to wonder about the ramifications of this for Shazza's character, which has bordered on unhinged. Intriguing developments, and an entertaining match on its own.
Match 3: Fatal 4 Way- Jimmy Townsend vs. Rhys Angel vs. Xander Sullivan vs. Kingsley
Xander starts the match by disparaging Generation Now- my god, that feels like forever ago, but yes, all three of his opponents were in Gen Now. Kingsley throws tea in his face, sending him out of the ring, and it is on! Townsend and Kingsley form an alliance and wipe Xander out with a double clothesline. Rhys Angel, who seems to be adopting the old gimmick of "The" Brian Kendrick, pushes Jimmy into Kingsley, before scurrying back out of the ring. Jimmy goes for a baseball slide, but Rhys catches him and throws him into the ring post. Back in the ring, Xander hits Rhys with a backbreaker, and Angel immediately glides out again. Guess he's got to work on his cardio? Maybe? He did get a haircut... maybe the hair was the source of his strength.
Kingsley takes on Xander with a series of elbows, but he fires back and drops her. Basement clothesline by Xander for a near fall. Jimmy back in and wipes out both Xander and Rhys with a springboard cross body. Kingsley and Jimmy go at it, and Jimmy almost goes for a nipple cripple on instinct, but catches himself and pokes her in the eye instead. Uncle Jack Bonza is fuming on commentary. All four hit big moves and everyone's down!
Enziguri by Jimmy on Xander. Superman punch by Rhys on Kingsley. Jimmy and Rhys start throwing down. Jimmy gets the free shot and lands a direct punch to the face, and Rhys bails from the match yet again! Kingsley back in and she takes Xander's head off with a lariat, followed by a Code Red on Jimmy. She hits the Nations pose and locks in a submission- a straitjacket STF? Jimmy passes out, and that's a win for the Bad Bitch Nation!
Winner: Kingsley (at 6:03)
Star Rating: ***1/4. Fun dose of action to break up the more serious tournament matches. It did a nice job establishing the new character of Rhys Angel, a slightly tweaked character of Jimmy Townsend, as well as reminding us of the shenanigans of Xander and the general awesomeness of Kingsley!
Post-match, Jack Bonza leaves the commentary desk and joins his niece Kingsley in the ring to celebrate. He's sporting a moon boot, but is in great spirits... until the music of SMS hits. Unsocial Jordan, Belinda Pierce and Aaron Jake hit the ring. Jordan requests that Kingsley change the name of the Bad... Nation. She gives a definitive no, so Jordan lays down a challenge for Now We Conquer- SMS vs. The Bad Bitch Nation, if SMS win, the Nation has to change their name. The challenge is accepted by Bonza, but Kingsley isn't happy about it as they leave.
Match 4: No 1 Contender's Tournament Match- Michael Spencer vs. Mat Rogers
Spencer jumps Full Force during the pre-match check in, and does everything he can to keep Rogers off his feet. Rogers, who has new theme music and American Badass-esque attire, is kept to one knee in the opening moments of the match. Spencer goes up top but Rogers hurls him off the top rope across the ring! Spencer once again works the leg and clubbers Rogers down to try and negate the size disadvantage. Rogers catches a slingshot spear attempt and mounts a comeback, dropping Spencer with a flying shoulder tackle.
Rogers goes for the pumphandle slam but Spencer fights out with knees, followed by a Codebreaker that staggers the big man. A second Codebreaker attempt is blocked, and Rogers hits a sidewalk slam for a near fall. Bonza makes a Dragonball Z reference about Spencer's tights, which both Piers and JT sound lost over. Losing major points, they were doing so well! Rogers sets up for a powerbomb, but the leg gives out and Spencer turns it into a Boston Crab. Kai Drake turns up at ringside to try and prevent Rogers from reaching the ropes.
Spencer goes for a springboard but Rogers just swats him out of the air. Rogers goes for the pumphandle again, but Spencer escapes and Drake gets up on the apron to get in Rogers' face. Spencer goes for the slingshot spear, but Full Force intercepts him with a boot. Drake gets in the ring and takes a boot as well. Bit of leniency here from referee Nick! Black Hole Slam and Rogers gets the pin and the win!
Winner: Mat Rogers (at 5:51)
Star Rating: ***. Pretty good big man-little man match. Smart work by Spencer with the leg work to try and even things up, and the MK Plus Ultra involvement, although predictable, did add a little more action to the match. Rogers built some great momentum at the beginning of 2021 with his Premiership matches, and looks to be back in that form, I'm keen to see this version of Mat Rogers get his hands on Lyrebird Luchi.
Match 5: No. 1 Contender's Tournament Match- Jessica Troy vs. Mat Diamond
They tie up, as Piers makes the salient point that both competitors have something to prove here- Jess coming off the title loss, and Mat returning from an injury suffered in the Lightspeed Express vs. Aussie Open match. These two have history as well, with Troy facing and defeating Diamond in the first intergender defence of the PWWA Championship. Diamond grounds Troy with a headlock, but she soon escapes and starts wrenching the arm with surgical precision.
Jess puts Mat in a hammerlock and repeatedly throws him into the turnbuckles, followed by some knife edge chops. Definitely a vicious edge to her attack in this match- and Diamond is someone she respects! Imagine if she gets her hands on Osborne in this state of mind. Jess goes for the tilt a whirl into the Fujiwara armbar, but Diamond rolls through and puts her down with a dropkick! Jess fights back and goes for her patented elbow barrage in the corner, but Mat rolls away and blasts her with a pump kick, followed by a backbreaker for a near fall.
The commentary team make the point that Diamond is a decorated competitor in Aussie wrestling, having held numerous titles, but he's never held or even really been in contention for the PWA Heavyweight Championship. Diamond shows his own aggressive side as he stomps down Troy. Jess mounts a comeback and goes for her running kick on the apron, but Diamond avoids it and lands a leaping enziguri. Diamond sets up for possibly a superplex to the outside or a hurricanrana to the inside, but Troy fights out and lands the kick, followed by a dive from the apron, through the corner turnbuckles, wiping out Diamond and the front row of fans ringside! Awesome!
Back in the ring, a Meteora to the back of the head gets a near fall for Jess. After the kickout, she transitions into the Fujiwara armbar! Diamond makes the ropes. Diamond fires back with a leg lariat, followed by a double underhook facebuster for a near fall. A frustrated Diamond delivers some disrespectful kicks and stomps to the head. Troy rallies with a brainbuster but Diamond kicks out at the last moment! They trade strikes. Diamond lands a running Shooting Star Press, and looks to follow up quickly with a split leg moonsault, but Jess rolls out of the way! She locks in the Fujiwara armbar and Diamond is forced to tap!
Winner: Jessica Troy (at 12:02)
Star Rating: ***3/4. Definitely match of the night. Two popular stars who had chips on their shoulders for different reasons. High stakes combined with tremendous athleticism. This was a step above the typical Academy show match, this was a Black Label effort for sure. Massively looking forward to seeing the fight that Troy will bring to Now We Conquer.
Intermission time. They replay a match from Night 2 of PWA Colosseum 2019, a Fatal 4 Way to determine the No. 1 Contender for the PWWA Championship- Headhunter Rig vs. Steph De Lander vs. Royce Chambers vs. Big Fudge.
I actually covered this match a long time ago in my Colosseum review. Excuse me while I copy & paste:
Steph De Lander def. Headhunter Rig, Big Fudge and Royce Chambers in a Fatal 4 Way to become No. 1 Contender for the PWWA Championship
Thoughts: Talk about a clash of styles. The aggression of Rig, the power of De Lander, the high flying of Chambers and... Big Fudge. This is the PWA debut of Royce Chambers, and he quickly shows why he got to debut on the biggest show of the year. His ability to fly and flip is- dare I say it- Will Ospreay-esque. He wipes everyone out with a crazy handspring I-Don't-Even-Know-WTF-To-Call-It and comes super close to winning the thing with his 630 Splash finisher on Headhunter Rig. Big Fudge has moments with his patented Butt Punches on everyone. Rig wipes out Steph De Lander with the best cannonball going- either him or Shane Thorne, anyway. Fudge chokeslams Chambers, who takes a Phoenix Splash bump off it for some reason. Okay, that was a little much, dude. So this match was definitely a coming out party for Royce Chambers, but the victory and the spoils go to Steph De Lander, who pins Fudge after a sit out slam. SDL vs. Troy is going to be A LOT of fun. This match was the better of the Fatal 4 Ways on this weekend in my opinion. (***1/2)
And we're back to 2021!
Funny little promo video between Big Fudge and Mick Moretti. Two of the funniest people in PWA. Fudge says he's been tipping, and raises the ire of Moretti by throwing his name out first. There's a $50 bet riding on the outcome of Moretti's match.
Match 6: 8 Person Tag- Carter Deams, Ben Braxton, Rita Stone & Parker Tomas vs. Ricky South, Nathan Pidgeon, David Streamer & Tommy D
Tommy D and Parker Tomas start it off, and Tommy drops PT with a shoulder block. Ricky low bridges PT out of the ring, bringing in Braxton. Ricky tags himself in and Ricky and Tommy hit Braxton with a double suplex for an early near fall. Tommy D with a bulldog and Ricky with a knee drop for another near fall on Braxton. Ricky South and Carter Deams are talking trash to each other throughout all of this.
Pidgey tags in and Carter kicks him out of the sky for a close 2 count. Carter pins Pidgey after a chop in cocky fashion for a 1 count. Stone tags in and starts kicking Dingo ass in double quick time. PT tags in and starts tying Pidgey in knots. Pidgey finally gets separation with a cazadora sunset flip, followed by a neckbreaker. Pidgey finally gets the tag to Streamer and the tempo picks up for the PWA team against the Newy Pro crew. Running splash by Streamer gets a near fall.
Carter in to nail Streamer with the half and half suplex, and from there everyone in his team comes in to land a shot of their own. Streamer comes back eventually with a big shoulder block on Braxton. Ricky tags in and he wipes out Braxton, Stone and PT, but Carter is nowhere to be seen. The camera finds him holding up Ricky's PWA Championship belt, distracting the champ. The distraction allows Braxton and Stone to hit South with an assisted satellite DDT! Pidgeon in and he takes out Braxton with a great German suplex, followed by a suicide dive onto Carter Deams!
Back in the ring, Braxton and Stone take the fight to the Dingoes, including a beautiful spot where Rita hits the 450 splash as Braxton hits a Lionsault! Unreal. Ricky makes the save. Ricky becomes legal via lucha tag rules. He catches a Stone dive with an Emerald Flosion, and sets up for the piledriver. Carter tries to make the save but gets back dropped. Ricky hits Stone with the piledriver for the victory!
Winners: Ricky South & The Green Dingoes (at 9:17)
Star Rating: ***1/2. That was a blast. Every time the Newy Pro guys come to PWA, it reminds me that I really need to get my butt to Newcastle for a show. The Sydney crew held it down as well. One of the best things about these Academy shows is watching the Green Dingoes gain experience and get better with every outing. This also built a lot of heat on the Ricky South vs. Carter Deams rivalry, which was needed after such a long hiatus.
Post-match, Carter still wants to fight. A guy on the ring crew is trying to wipe the ropes down between matches, and Carter grabs him and hits a package piledriver. Bonza is enraged- it's been weird to hear, but he's been entirely in babyface mode on the headset all show.
At the commentary desk, Bonza, JT and Piers hype the upcoming shows for PWA. 5 different shows in December, making the most of being out of the pandemic!
Match 7: SMS (Belinda Pierce & Aaron Jake) vs. Will Kiedis & Cherry Stephens
Massive pop for Cherry, massive heat for Kiedis. Standard. Cherry and Belinda to start, and it seems that Cherry still wants to join SMS! We get a handshake to start. Pierce in early control with the side headlock. Cherry tries to counter into a sunset flip at one point, but Belinda rolls through and maintains control with a headlock. Cherry hits a cazadora into an arm drag, and they trade leg sweeps for 1 counts. Very technical start.
Kiedis and AJ tag in. Leapfrogs, drop downs. AJ goes for a dropkick but misses, crashes and burns. SMS quickly gain back control and a tag to Belinda sees a spectacular double team- an assisted tilt-a-whirl splash! Looks like they were studying Rita Stone in the previous match. It gets a near fall. Cherry tags in but looks conflicted about the tactics Will wants her to use, like pulling Belinda's hair. Will tags back in and gets a 2 count after a clothesline in the corner.
Will wants a double team move but Cherry can't remember how to do it, and consults her notebook. Pierce takes the opportunity to push Will into Cherry, and then tags in Aaron. Aaron is fired up and cleans house. Near fall following a leaping kick by AJ. Cherry back involved and starts working with Will. Tilt a whirl backbreaker by Kiedis is followed by a flatliner by Cherry. Near fall. Kiedis is mad that it didn't get 3, and shoves Cherry- right into a kick from Aaron. Kiedis is cleared from the ring, leaving Cherry alone. Double team facebuster ends it.
Winners: SMS (at 7:58)
Star Rating: ***. Furthered the friction between Kiedis and Cherry, but felt a little odd because Cherry was really the only likeable one in the match. SMS and Jordan have teased a soft babyface turn but it hasn't been set, making a strange atmosphere here. Everyone worked hard and worked well though.
Match 8: No 1 Contender's Tournament: Unsocial Jordan vs. Mick Moretti
Moretti gets on the mic and tells the audience about his bet with Fudge. He asks Jordan to lay down and says he'll split the money with him. Jordan refuses, so Moretti cracks him with the microphone and goes on the attack. Jordan rolls Moretti into a deep victory roll for an early close near fall. This is followed by a roll up that I would describe as an inverted La Magistral for another 2 count. Jordan with a headscissors out of the corner, followed by a running elbow strike that looked a bit too light, but it gets another 2 anyway. JT with a hilarious line that he couldn't say what he would do for $50 on a family-friendly show.
Moretti bails to ringside to get a breather. When he returns to the ring he stomps Jordan's foot and takes him down with a leg sweep. Moretti pounds Jordan's face into the mat and applies a seatbelt pin for a near fall. He avoids a charging Jordan with the up and over into his trademark handstand. Moretti with the headscissors then plays some mind games, grabbing Jordan's wrist and doing the old schoolyard "stop hitting yourself" thing. He follows it up with a "got ya nose" which goads Jordan to the apron, where he hits a running leg drop. Moretti with the "Mick Togo" senton for a near fall.
Jordan "accidentally" falls head-first into Moretti's balls, then follows up with an atomic drop and a Manhattan drop. Half and half suplex- called as a "Millenium suplex"?- for a near fall. Moretti taking some punishment, but comes back with a curb stomp for a 2 count of his own. They fight to the apron and Jordan nails a Eat Defeat. He goes for the suplex again but Moretti blocks and hits a superkick. Reverse Meteora on the apron by Moretti and Jordan may be out cold! SMS come to ringside to check on Jordan, but he gets in the ring himself at the count of 9!
Jordan fights back and ups the ante himself by landing a suicide dive, followed by a Shining Wizard against the apron! Shades of the more serious, dangerous Unsocial Jordan that we saw during the PWA Premiership. Jordan gets Moretti back in the ring, but the Rapscallion kicks out at 2.9! The ref gets bumped down, and Moretti has an idea for some shenanigans. He goes to the outside and gets a steel chair, and Belinda Pierce tries to stop him using it. The chair slides to Jordan, who considers using it but ultimately throws it aside. Moretti takes advantage of the hesitation and hits the Fisherman Buster... but Jordan kicks out! Moretti goes for the snapmare driver, but Jordan blocks and hits a rough Falcon Arrow, but Moretti kicks out!
They trade strikes and a superkick gets Jordan another near fall. Bonza is shocked at how even this match has been. Moretti fires back with a German suplex, into a dragon suplex. Another snapmare driver attempt is countered into a backslide for an ultra close near fall. Moretti hits a high knee and finally the snapmare driver- but Jordan gets his foot on the ropes!
The crowd erupts in cheers and a "$50" chant. Moretti sets up for a top rope fisherman's buster, but Jordan lands on his feet and hits a half and half suplex from the top rope! Moretti appeared to land on his head, and Jordan immediately follows up with the Shining Wizard for the win!
Winner: Unsocial Jordan (at 16:22)
Star Rating: ***3/4. I actually enjoyed this a lot more on a second watch. Could definitely challenge Troy vs. Diamond for MOTN status. They built it really well down the stretch and the commentary enhanced things as well, telling the story of Jordan not being on that level, only for the Unsocial One to prove everyone wrong. I was also pretty tired after a long day on Saturday. And I bet Jordan and Moretti were tired as hell after the effort they put forth!
A fine return to form for PWA. A long time away, but they were right back in the swing of things with this Academy show, furthering storylines and delivering strong action, especially Jessica Troy vs. Mat Diamond & Unsocial Jordan vs. Mick Moretti. All the wrestlers worked hard, and the commentary team really helped things along, with Piers being a welcome addition to the team with his confident, informed voice, while Bonza & JT added first hand knowledge and steered the ship as far as promoting future matches and events.
PWA did a great job building to not only the massive return to Max Watts with Now We Conquer, but also the upcoming MCW X PWA supercard in December! The It felt amazing to be back at a live wrestling event, and if this event is any indication, PWA are ready to hit the ground running in December, into 2022 and beyond!
Overall Score: 7.5/10
Until next time, take care,