The opening moments of NWA Power Surge this week featured Joe Galli, Billy Corgan, and Pat Kenny going over the seeding of the Crockett Cup for this year. The first seed was La Rebelion, and it was announced that Harry Smith would be Doug Williams’ partner in the tournament. The rest of the brackets can be seen here:
After running down the first 8 teams, they cut to a match recorded previously between Sal Rinauro and J Spade.
J Spade defeated Sal Rinauro (with Danny Deals)
I’m not into Sal Rinauro’s demon possessed gimmick, but I can’t fault him for going all in on it and trying to make it work. He might win me over. Joe Galli suggested that he was ‘Sinister Sal Rinauro” now, and if he takes up that name, I may change my mind. It is bizarre that Danny Deals is still in his corner rather than the Sinister Minister, but we shall see if that lasts.
Rinauro bit the fingers and attacked the hand of Spade quite a bit in the early part of this match, including doing a series of stomps Bryan Danielson style on Spade. Every time Spade got offence Sal would go for the finger and continue small joint manipulation, but after leaving Spade in the corner, Sal charged and hit a sky high spinebuster for the pinfall.
Billy Corgan and Joe Galli talked about Trevor Murdoch losing the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship to Matt Cardona. Corgan announced that due to the injuries suffered in that match, Murdoch was not cleared to wrestle at the Crockett Cup. Nick Aldis instead stepped in to take on Cardona, and Corgan expected Murdoch to come back stronger than ever once he heals up.
Corgan told the story really well here, and having segments like this more often would do well in filling in a lot of the holes in NWA’s storytelling because some of the questions I had lingering were answered here, and it helped drive forward what they were going for.
Allysin Kay defeated Missa Kate
Kay and Kate had a good match here, with some short hope spots for Kate. I like how the NWA does this every now and then with the less established talent, giving them shine before defeating them. Kay looked great in this, and Kate looked like someone that was missing experience, but had the talent to compete. Kay got the win after Kate missed a corkscrew splash, allowing Kay to plant Kate with the AK47.
Corgan, Kenny, and Galli continued discussing the rest of the tournament brackets for the Crockett Cup. Again, I liked Corgan telling the story behind why each team was placed where they were, including why we should pay attention to them. It’s a little thing, but it helps me connect with each team.
The Fixers were with Joe Galli and they talked about beating the OGK, calling them nerds with a k (but the k is silent). Wrecking Ball called out the Bushwhackers, Demolition, the Legion of Doom, and the Nasty Boys. I think Wrecking Ball is my favourite wrestler.
Judias (with The Sinister Minister) defeated Jamie Stanley
Judias is not working for me at all. It only gets worse the more they try to push him. Judias killed Stanley in this match, which got mild applause because Stanley is good at being dislikable. But this match was heel vs. heel, which also makes it odd. Judias hit a butterfly suplex into the turnbuckles on Stanley, but it looked like he planted Stanley on his head like a Paradigm Shift but by accident, so that had to hurt.
Stanley managed to hit a flying crossbody on Judias then dropped an elbow, but Judias grabbed him by the throat and chokeslammed him. Judias picked him up out of a pin then hit the Crucifixia for the win.
Nick Aldis and Matt Cardona joined Joe Galli for a final faceoff to close the show. Aldis and Cardona were excellent here. Aldis talked about how he wanted to step away from the spotlight of the world title scene, bringing in Doug Willams to go after the tag team titles. Aldis said Murdoch deserved the spotlight, and Cardona robbed him of it. Cardona claimed he was saving the NWA. Aldis said that he agreed with Cardona on one thing – the NWA needed saving now, and that Cardona was a clown.
Aldis’ promo here was fantastic. Cardona was so good at being an unlikable jerk. Cardona claimed the NWA Worlds Heavyweight championship is valuable because he holds it. Aldis got very angry and reminded Cardona of the legacy of the title, including Dusty Rhodes, Ric Flair, and Harley Race. Aldis and Cardona made me want to see this match, so this was very well done.
Not the usual format for an NWA show, but I like when they do episodes like this and really focus on telling the stories of all the matches, which in this case are the stories of all the tag teams involved in the Crockett Cup. The Fixers are a delight, and Wrecking Ball is hilarious. I am critical of the holes in production and storytelling the NWA has sometimes, but this was a great show to get me hyped for the Crockett Cup.