7/31 NWA Anarchy Hostile Environment Live Report
By Larry Goodman
NWA Anarchy celebrated their 5th anniversary with Hostile Environment 2010 featuring the annual War Games match on a steamy Saturday night in Cornelia, Georgia. On the plus side, the show drew close to 200 people at $20 each, the largest gate for a major Anarchy show since Fright Night 2008 (Hardcore Hell ’09 drew a few more people but I believe tickets were $15). It was very hot crowd, reminiscent of Anarchy’s early days.
Phil Shatter vs. Ace Rockwell is sure to be in the running for Anarchy’s best match of 2010, as their match from Hardcore Hell ’09 was last year.
The undercard matches accomplished their respective missions. All were kept relatively short and there weren’t too many of them, so the crowd was still fresh and hot for the main events. Two babyfaces received major boosts in the process, and the tag team situation got a whole lot more interesting.
On the other side, the 2010 War Games was the weakest in its 10 year history –a match that managed to underperform despite very modest expectations.
Anarchy is a promotion facing major challenges going forward. Rockwell can now be added to the list of talent losses (see news & notes post) Anarchy has suffered in recent months, which also includes Kimo, Caprice Coleman and Jeremy Vain. The status of Mikal Judas and Phil Shatter (aka Gunner and Murphy) has to be considered a question mark given their recent change of fortunes at TNA. Efforts to elevate from within have yielded mix results. The existing talent pool just isn’t deep enough to counter the loss of so many top level stars. To further complicate matters, a good portion of the premier indie talent in Georgia is now at Rampage Pro Wrestling, which is running the same dates as Anarchy. Most that aren’t committed to RPW, are looking for a decent paying gigs, something Anarchy has never been known to be.
NWA Anarchy owner Jerry Palmer did a little pre-show preaching to fire up the crowd.
Ring announcer Michael Gentry introduced the NWA Anarchy announce team of Greg Hunter and John Johnson. A deluxe video by Kevin Marx played on the WrestleVision screen and the building was crackling with energy.
(1) Lane Vasser won an eleven man battle royal. The other participants roughly in order of elimination were BJ Hancock (worst name in wrestling), Ty Tyson, Andrew Alexander, the unidentified love child of Ace Rockwell and Hayden Young, Antwan Jordan, Dustin Knight, Jacob Ashworth, Aden Chambers, Aaron Lee and Bo Newsome. It was your typical nondescript battle royal. Newsome was the last guy in with Vasser, who did a rolling fireman’s carry slam into a moonsault. Newsome made the moonsault miss but was unable to capitalize, and Vasser basically powered him out of the ring. Crowd liked Vasser winning. In so far as a future babyface star, Vasser has the most upside of anyone on the local horizon due to his eye catching physique. At this stage, his movements look mechanical, but he can go places if can overcome that case of Lex Luger disease.
(2) Anthony Henry beat Andrews Pendleton III to win the NWA Anarchy Young Lion’s Championship in 7:13. Henry has added some cool moves to his repertoire. He hit a nice quebradora (tilt-a-whirl backbreaker) early. He also used a spinning inverted Gori Special. The heat spot was lousy – a sloppy lariat or some such. Henry showed good fire and explosiveness on his comeback, before Pendleton cut him off with a wheelbarrow facebuster for a near fall. Henry popped the crowd with a deftly applied Texas Cloverleaf. No submission, but shortly thereafter, Henry caught Pendleton with a bridging german suplex for the clean win. Crowd popped huge for it. Dustin Knight came out to raise Henry’s hand (Henry had earned a shot at the title of his choosing and chose the Young Lion’s Title to honor Knight, who recently returned from a career threatening neck injury). Henry is the best wrestler among the up-and-comers, and this match provided a clear boost in his stature with the Anarchy fans.
(3) Hate Junkies (Dany Only & Stryknyn with Reverend Dan Wilson) beat New Wave (Steven Walters & Derrick Driver) in 12:45 when Stryknyn pinned Driver. A totally fine tag match. It turned out to be the second best match behind Shatter/Rockwell. Wilson has completed his fashion transformation from the evil troll mastermind of Devil’s Rejects to the guiding force behind the equally vile Junkies with a killer Hank Williams Jr. hat. Crowd was quiet at the start, but a series of New Wave double teams culminating with a shot for Wilson really brought the crowd up. New Wave hit stereo topes. Walters shot through the ropes like a rocket and almost went right over the top of his intended target. Wilson pulled the ropes down to dump Walters. Junkies softened Walters up with gutter tactics, before cutting off his comeback with high impact moves. Driver decked Only with an elbow he never saw for an out-of-the-ordinary double down to set up the hot tag. Junkies had Drive set up for the superbomb, but he reversed into a super huracanrana, and Only had to make a save. Walters posted Only’s mangled shoulder. Only started screaming. New Wave went for the Unskinny Bop on Stryknyn, but Wilson hit Driver on top of the head with his cane. Really whacked him, too. The shot could be heard throughout the building.
Afterwards, Attorney Jeff G. Bailey came out to distract, allowing Talent & Money (with JT Talent making his first Anarchy appearance since March) to run in from the front door and beat the living hell out of New Wave. This was a glorious beatdown. Double team finishers for both New Wavers followed by triple chair shots to the back and more. An attempted rescue by Knight and Henry was cut off by Hate Junkies. New Wave vs. Talent & Money was an awesome feud the first time around, and the current vacuum of headline programs gives them an opportunity to take it to the top of card.
(4) Seth Delay beat Billy Buck to retain the NWA Anarchy Television Championship in 9:26. an entertaining story match. Wow. What a pop for Buck. There was a lot shenanigans with the paper Burger King hats and a massive “you suck and it’s all your fault!” chant directed at Delay. “King” Seth did not take kindly to being made fun of. Brody Chase was the special ref and he played his role to the hilt. He found Delay’s hiding place for the brass knucks and turned them over to security. He placed the title belt at the time keeper’s table for safe keeping. Delay was panic stricken. He tried to run, but Chase dragged him back into the ring with a little ass exposal in the process. A top rope double stomp to the back of a doubled over Buck turned the match in Delay’s favor. Buck sold his ass off in between fiery hope spots. A missed top rope elbow led to the full blown straps down comeback. Delay saw the superkick coming and rolled out of the ring. Buck chased. Delay whipped him hard into the barricade. Chase got bumped. Turned out Delay had a second set of knucks in his trunks, but Chase recovered in time to give Delay a wedgie, and relieve him of his weapon. Chase went to clock Delay with the knucks. He ducked and Chase nailed Buck. Delay made the cover. Chase first resisted make the count, then hesitated at two, before reluctantly slapping the mat for the third time.
Chase fumbled with the knucks like he was going to hit Delay, but he took the high road and begrudgingly raised the champion’s hand. Buck was carried out. Crowd chanted for Chase. My, what a great babyface he turned out to be.
(5) Phil Shatter (with Jeff G. Bailey) defeated Ace Rockwell to retain the NWA National Championship in 23:31. Pretty tough to pick between this match and their 2009 match. They were both great matches. The one last year got off to a better start, but this one finished stronger. Clean breaks early but Shatter was testy. Ace pie-faced him. Shatter returned the favor and said he saw fear. Ace slapped him. The momentum had swung in Rockwell’s favor when Shatter dropped him over the top rope with a press slam at 5:30. Bailey put his Gucci loafers to good use. Shatter methodically worked over Rockwell’s back. There were a couple of shaky spots here. Rockwell kicked out of a standing spinebuster slam, and Shatter showed the first signs of frustration. Rockwell roared back with a barrage of blows and bulldog for a near fall. At 15:00, Shatter speared Rockwell something fierce. Rockwell kicked out but he was in agony. Rockwell instinctively hit Aces High for the close near fall. Rockwell went for the airplane spin, but Shatter grabbed the ropes to block and hit a high knee for a near fall. Shatter hit a devastating PTSD powerbomb. Shatter went nuts when Rockwell somehow kicked out. He trashed the ringsteps and lost his temper, such that he went for an ill-advised top rope elbow. He doesn’t do it often, but when he wants to, Shatter can really fly. Rockwell applied the Sharpshooter center ring. Huge chant for the tap out. Bailey got on the apron, and Rockwell sent the middle rope into his nuts. A sweet series of back and forth counters led to a flying bodypress by Ace for a great false finish. Bailey pulled out the powder, but Rockwell ducked and it went in Shatter’s face. Referee Ken Wallace tossed Bailey out. Rockwell hit a missile dropkick and Shatter kicked out again. One of the things that made this so great was the near falls had people believing it could happen. After a collision of clotheslines, Rockwell tried for Aces High again. Shatter escaped and speared him dead for the three count.
The crowd gave them a standing ovation. Shatter slapped Rockwell’s hand in appreciation. Rockwell waved goodbye from the ring, then circled the ring for a round of hugs and handshakes.
(6) Don Matthews & Shadow Jackson & Tank & Slim J beat Mikal Judas (with Cid Istic) & Shaun Tempers & NWA Anarchy Tag Team Champions Orion Bishop & Skirra Corvus (with Enoch Tsarion) in the War Games when Tsarion threw in the towel at 22:38. This wasn’t a highly anticipated match to begin with. The best War Games matches have stemmed from an organic hatred between warring factions. This one had two manufactured teams without compelling issues between the two sides or strong bonds between the teammates. For whatever reasons, the burning of Matthews’ family bible by Tsarion failed to inflame the situation into a must see showdown match. An ominous sign was the perplexing choice of Matthews to start the match for the babyface team. His skill set is such that he’s the guy you would least want to focus on for five minutes of singles action. Not much happened. Tempers won the coin flip for Team Judas (amazing that the heels have won the coin flip 11 times in row). Bishop entered next. Matthews selling wasn’t what it needed to be (it needed to be like Buck in the previous match). He made a counterproductive one-on-two comeback just before Jackson entered. Tempers was next. Bishop used a spike to bloody Matthews and Jackson. Before Slim J could enter, Newsome waffled him with a chair. J was busted open and helped to the back. Tank went in instead. He bled copiously. Other than the blood, this was still pretty uneventful and without much heat. Judas was last in to make it a four on three beatdown. Matthews wasn’t getting up for the big moves by the heels. It was time for the last babyface to enter but nobody was there. Slim came running out late and entered with a flying reverse DDT off the top of the cage on Bishop. He followed with Screwdriver on the Rocks. Tempers provided the gore factor. He bled buckets. The crimson had made its way all the way down to his boots before it was over. Judas sent J into the cage with El Crucifijo. God, that looked nasty. Corvus tried to bring Tsarion’s cane into the cage, but Matthews smashed him with the cage door. Finish was muddled. Matthews was using his rope to strangle Corvus across the bottom rope, prompting Tsarion to throw in the towel. But Jackson and Tank had Judas and Bishop in grounded submissions as well. Tempers was down and in a state of delirium. From where I sat, it wasn’t clear why Tsarion threw the towel in.
Postmatch, Tank signaled to Judas that he was coming for his title.
NWA Anarchy notes from Hostile Environment 2010:
The status of Shatter and Judas with TNA is unchanged. As of this moment, neither are under contract. The people at NWA Anarchy could only speculate as to how their first TNA TV appearance as wrestlers would impact their future with NWA Anarchy. If they are contracted, then TNA gets approval rights on bookings …Rockwell may or may not return to pro wrestling. His immediate focus will be on completing his degree in Mechanical Engineering. The woman that got physically involved in the angle with Truitt Fields is Rockwell’s legit girlfriend. She’s a schoolteacher in the Chattanooga area… Anarchy returns to action in one week – Saturday night, August 7, at which time fans can expect to see the fallout from Chase accidentally costing Buck the TV Title…former NWA Anarchy wrestler Jay Clinton was visiting backstage…the unidentified love child in the battle royal was Briscoe Brothers trainee, Dustin Tarr. His myspace is here…After the battle royal, Slim J came out to congratulate trainees Vasser and Newsome. However, Newsome was appeared frustrated by the loss and the jealous that Slim shook Vasser’s hand first.
On a personal note, the condolences and support extended my way by Jerry Palmer and other folks at Anarchy regarding my father’s death were much appreciated. If you need a charitable organization that you can feel good about donating to, look no further than the Les Turner ALS Foundation in Chicago.
“Mr. Ultimate NWA” Scott Hensley’s observations on the matches…
Henry vs. Pendleton had some great spots and I really didn’t expect to see Henry win the YLC, glad the torch has been passed to him though as I do agree he is the most talented and proven newcomer.
New Wave vs. Hate Junkies was really good. I really enjoyed the Talent and Money postmatch beatdown followed by Youth Gone Wild trying to make the save, only to be cut off by the Junkies. Great execution by all four teams involved. Anarchy almost always has a really interesting tag division with great teams, feuds, and lots of awesome action.
Buck vs. Delay with Chase as referee was a match that I didn’t care that much about, going into it but I really enjoyed the match and it came off absolutely great. Delay pulled the second pair of brass knuckles from underneath the ring steps.
Shatter vs. Rockwell was a rollercoaster ride with so many believable nearfalls. The ovation they received after the match was well deserved and it’s sad that both of them may be moving on from Anarchy soon(Rockwell taking time off and Shatter possibly growing in his role with TNA)
The War Games had some great spots, great blood….. but just lacked something… I think the guys in the match went all out but the story just wasn’t there this year. Most of the crowd likes Don Matthews but I just think he had too much to do in this match. Him beating up Skirra Corvus for the first five minutes of the match just wasn’t entertaining at all. I didn’t like the teams being at ringside during the event either… I think if each guy had their own entrance it would have added a little more excitement. Newsome’s chairshot on Slim J didn’t come off very well either in my opinion. I don’t think it was hard enough to be believable and fans either couldn’t see it or thought it was so weak that it wouldn’t matter. Newsome moved away entirely too slowly, as Tank stormed over with a chain toward him. Anyone should run from a guy as tough as Tank carrying a huge chain…. especially if you just knocked one of his teammates in the back with a chair.