NWA Power featured two championship matches on this week’s episode titles ‘Pride vs. Thunder’.
Dokken is gone and the new theme for the show is ‘I’m Broken’ by Pantera, which gives the show a more late ‘90s ECW vibe than what ‘Into the Fire’ provided.
Joe Galli interviewed Tim Storm, who is starting his path back to the championship by facing Thom Latimer next week. He denied rumors of his retirement when Galli brought them up.
Latimer and Kamille came out saying that Storm can never challenge for the NWA title again. Galli received word that Mama Storm was in the building, but it was a gag. A man dressed as Storm’s mother came out with a walker and had some good lines including taking Tim to watch Frank Gotch wrestle as a child. Storm called it ‘disrespectful’.
The comedy on the show can be hit or miss and this reads cheesy and probably came off as such but the Gotch line was very good. The day the real Mama Storm shows up, this place will go nuts.
MATT CROSS VS CALEB KONLEY
Television champion Ricky Starks was on commentary.
They had a really good match by the standards of Power, which doesn’t emphasize the in-ring matches as its calling card. Cross hit a handspring back elbow into the corner followed by a reverse cross. Cross ate a rolling palm thrust and then did his bounce off the ropes using his shoulder to hit a cutter and a shooting star press to win.
WINNER: Matt Cross at 5:50
Cross and Konley shook hands and Starks put Cross over as a threat to his title and seems to be the next title match.
The match was very good for the time they had and a clear step above the usual matches on the show.
Nick Aldis had a taped promo noting it’s been 471 days since he won the NWA title, but it’s been seven days since issuing his challenge to Marty Scurll, who hasn’t responded. He told Scurll he must respond or make a counteroffer but needs to put up something big if Aldis is going to give him another title shot.
David Marquez was with The Pope and The Dawsons. The Pope ran down Homicide as the weak link of the team with Eddie Kingston stating Homicide has no star power and they blew their shot at the tag titles.
A furious Eddie Kingston stormed out and cut the best promo of the show. He said he should rip out Pope’s tongue for what he said, to never disrespect Homicide and he built New York City and many champions in other companies. He said Homicide is the reason he didn’t commit suicide and would die for Homicide. This led to Kingston introducing the Beer City Bruiser and Brian Milonas as the latest ROH talent integrated into the show as back up for Kingston.
Seriously, this promo was excellent from Kingston, who I’ve been very high on since the inception of this show.
May Valentine is doing a new vlog segment called ‘May Valentine’s Diary’. I didn’t know what to make of this. At the start, it was terribly edited with lots of jump cuts, but it’s obviously by design. She’s playing a Kardashian that goes on another her outfits and the likes she receives and making new friends. This tied into last week’s match where Royce Isaacs got furious at Sal Rinauro, who he thought was flirting with Valentine. By the end, I thought Valentine got this character across and her play-by-play description of last week’s match was hilarious. I didn’t know what to make of it by the end but I’m open-minded to see where it goes.
ARON STEVENS VS TREVOR MURDOCH FOR THE NWA NATIONAL TITLE
The whole match was Stevens continually sending Murdoch to the floor to try and ride out the time limit. Murdoch kept fighting back and mounted a big comeback at the end. After the two-minute warning, Murdoch hit a full nelson and was poked in the eyes. Stevens broke out of a sleeper as time expired.
Murdoch hit the bulldog from the top and covered Stevens after the match had ended to make the point that he would have won the title with a longer time.
Sean Mooney hosted the ‘Two Minute Update’ plugging Free Enterprise this Sunday with PCO & Marty Scurll vs. Nick Aldis & Rush, and Ricky Starks defeating Zicky Dice in his first step toward the ‘Lucky 7’ rule for a future NWA title shot.
JAMES STORM & ELI DRAKE VS JOCEPHUS & MIMS IN A NON-TITLE MATCH
This was a short squash match with Mims taking the fall after a fireman’s carry into a back cracker by Storm.
WINNERS: James Storm & Eli Drake in 3:26
Melina sat with Galli and Stu Bennett for the main event and wants to face the winner of the main event. She never spoke during the match.
THUNDER ROSA VS ALLYSIN KAY FOR THE NWA WOMEN’S TITLE
So, these two had the best match at ‘Hard Times’ and was a very strong match. However, Bennett had to go ridiculously overboard and call it the best match on the planet this year, which is such a silly statement that only hampers the match the two had.
This was nowhere at the level of the pay-per-view and more focused on the story of those outside the ring. Marti Belle came out to assist Rosa and she didn’t want her help. Ashley Vox and Tasha Steelz sent Belle away.
Kay took everything and kept kicking out including a wheelbarrow into a stunner, a release German suplex, a Gori Bomb, and a Death Valley Driver that she kicked out from. Finally, Rosa snapped her neck on the top rope and bridged with a roll-up to pin Kay.
WINNER: Thunder Rosa at 9:23 to retain the NWA women’s title
It picked up at the end and they gave Kay the big sequence of kick-outs where she withstood so much before going down.
Afterward, Thunder Rosa left to the back without Melina and Marti Belle and teasing that Melina is now going to challenge her for the title.
It was a good episode this week with the highlights including the Eddie Kingston promo, which was fantastic and top-level from a babyface, which is where Kingston should be slotted. The two title matches were more story-driven than match-quality focused, although there was nothing wrong with either. Thunder Rosa and Allysin Kay had higher expectations because of the match they had at the pay-per-view and they clearly have strong chemistry together. This was a shorter version of the ‘Hard Times’ match.
Nick Aldis’ speech was short but pushed the ROH show for this Sunday and that’s the dominant story on the show with Scurll’s response being the next step.
The stuff with Mama Storm was too campy to really get into and Tim Storm doesn’t need to be involved in comedy skits that make him look silly by association. His interview was great prior to the sketch.
And, Matt Cross is a great addition to the roster, and they are going in the direction of Cross challenging Ricky Starks, which is a great opponent for Starks. I think this promotion needs people in the role of Cross, who can have those great television matches regardless of the length and ups the in-ring quality.
Overall, a very easy episode to watch with some solid promos throughout the show and the wrestling was above the usual level between Cross vs. Konley and the main event.