NWA Powerrr Episode 37 Recap

This week’s episode of NWA Powerrr saw the continuation of the Block A and B matchups in the Champions Series. Let’s get right into what was a solid show, with decent NWA-style wrestling throughout carried by quite a bit of fun character work.

Credit: National Wrestling Alliance

Kenzie Paige Defeats Lady Frost

Per usual, we kicked things off with the competitors in the ring and ready for battle. It was great to see two relative newcomers to NWA going head to head here. Team Aron and Taryn’s Lady Frost was dominant throughout the match. I’ve seen her work in both AEW and NWA up to this point, and this was by far her best outing. She was easily performer of the show. All around, from the in-ring work to the character work, Frost put together an extremely compelling performance. Specifically notable was the interaction between Frost and the referee throughout the match, which would eventually cost her.

The ending sequence saw Frost end the small amount of offense mustered by Kenzie Paige with a beautiful kick to the head, followed by a moonsault delivering knees to the midsection of Paige. This could have been the end of the match, but Frost decided to lift Paige’s shoulders up at 2. While taunting the referee again, Paige was able to successfully get the three via rollup and add another 5 points to the total for Team Kamille and Idol.

Credit: National Wrestling Alliance

Crimson and the Masked Man Wrestle to Time Limit Draw

A lot of back and forth in this one, during which we see an opponent attempt to unmask Team Pope and Velvet’s Masked Man for the first time. The notable portion of this match takes place near the end, as we see Team Aldis and Melina’s Crimson take control outside of the ring, which saw the Masked Man have his head bounced off the commentary table culminating in a body slam onto the floor. Melina, who was on commentary, showed fantastic character work here.

As the two make their way back to the ring, Crimson blocks a superplex attempt and nearly wins the match with an elbow drop. The finishing sequence begins with the Masked Man countering an attempted Death Valley Driver. This was followed by a powerbomb, single leg crab combo. During the submission, as Crimson fights to get to the ropes, time expires. We get a bit of drama with the momentary assumption that the Masked Man had won. The draw sees two points added to either team’s totals.

Credit: National Wrestling Alliance

Jeremiah Plunkett Pins Colby Corino in Alternates Four Way

A fun concept sees the winner score 7 points for their team, while the loser erases 3 from theirs. Corino’s character work shines in this match, acting as the base for most of the happenings. Sal Rinauro was taken out early, which saw Plunkett and Corino team up against Jordan Clearwater. This carries on for a large portion of the match, and we get some great interaction between Plunkett and Corino.

Ultimately, the third pin attempt by Corino broken up by Plunkett ends the alliance. This leads to the finish, which sees Plunkett grab 7 points for Team Aldis and Melina after following a fake punch attempt with a DDT. Corino loses 3 points for Team Pope and Velvet for taking the pin.

Credit: National Wrestling Alliance

Tyrus Defeats Kratos

A lot of weird going on in this match, but let’s start with the positives. Right out of the gate we get great character stuff between Tyrus, his team captain Aron Stevens, and opposing team captain (but Tyrus’ manager) Austin Idol. Tyrus’ personality continues to be a focus as he demands “damn criminal” Kratos be searched. However, Tyrus took issue with being searched himself. The match was what you would expect from two heavies going back and forth for long stretch in favor of one or the other. There was a particularly fun interaction between Lady Frost (as team members are at ringside) and Kratos, which further added to Frost’s positive character work from earlier in the show.

Early on, Aron Stevens is ejected from ringside, and I have no idea why that happened. Neither did commentary, and it was never explained. The event acted as a preview of the wonky finish to come. The finish saw Tyrus hit an elbow drop for a clear three count, but the ref hesitates to call for the bell. Eventually, the bell rang and Tyrus is declared the winner. Really seemed like a botched finish.

Regardless, the result sees 5 points headed the Aron and Taryn’s Way, tying the score at 10 all against Team Kamille and Idol in Block A. Team Kamille and Idol advance via tiebreaker, having the shortest total time to victory.

Credit: National Wrestling Alliance

Jax Dane Defeats Slice Boogie

In another back and forth, character work is again a highlight. Team Aldis and Melina’s Slice Boogie’s early arrogance was a fun bit, capped by demanded the ref to count faster after Jax Dane kicks out at zero. It was actually an impressive start for Boogie, standing up to Dane before ultimately not being able to out tough the Team Pope and Velvet man. Each of the two have a few periods of control between them, without any real standout highlights in what was regardless a solid match. This main event sees Dane win with a nasty clothesline, adding 5 points to Team Pope and Velvet’s total. The final score of Block B has Team Pope and Velvet advance over Team Aldis and Melina 14-9.

The results from this week’s show sets up the final of the Champions Series next week. There, we will see Team Kamille and Idol take on Team Pope and Velvet.

AEW Dark 100: A Celebration

Credit: All Elite Wrestling

Tonight, All Elite Wrestling celebrates the 100th episode of AEW Dark. The YouTube show, originally conceived to air the previous week’s dark matches while previewing the upcoming episode of Dynamite, has transformed through the pandemic era into a place for independent wrestlers to showcase their talents. Let’s take a look back at why AEW Dark is so special.

The Commentary

AEW Dark has always done commentary well. Under the original format, a different wrestler joined the booth each week. It was a fun way for them to show some personality. Since the transition, however, the commentary team has settled to Excalibur and Taz, occasionally joined by a guest. In recent times, this has been in the form of fellow Knife Club member Ricky Starks. This is really what you should be watching for. Excalibur and Taz provide hilarious banter throughout the show each week, and their work has honestly made AEW Dark my favorite weekly content.

The Opportunity

The pandemic hit wrestling hard. WWE and AEW set up home bases without fans, many promotions went on hiatus, and the indie scene was dead. Cue AEW Dark and the transition to a showcase for independent wrestlers. Countless wrestlers have been granted the opportunity not only to work during the pandemic, but to perform on a platform large than most of them had seen. It has been extremely cool to see so many deserving talents get these chances.

The Showcase

With the aforementioned opportunity, so many have knocked it out of the park. Since the pandemic era rebranding, Dark has featured a number of excellent matches in a way you wouldn’t see on Dynamite. While the outcomes are as predictable as can get, Dark does not follow the typical squash match trope. I personally recommend checking out Shawn Dean vs. Rey Fenix from AEW Dark 5/19/20 as the perfect example. Additionally, Dark has acted as a great showcase for character work as well. Anything from The Acclaimed is a great place to start for this.

The Signings

In addition to the names like Shawn Dean and The Acclaimed, Red Velvet, The Varsity Blonds, Powerhouse Hobbs, Top Flight, and more have been signed to AEW contracts. All of these names earned those contracts by coming in and performing on Dark. Without the show, we wouldn’t have seen most of these talents in AEW, especially not this soon. The Acclaimed and The Varsity Blonds go a step further even, as they are teams that were formed after each member started appearing on Dark, and now they’re both compelling duos in a loaded tag division. Even guys who haven’t been signed but are traveling with the promotion, like the extremely over Fuego Del Sol and more recently Wheeler Yuta, have been such great standouts brought to us through Dark.

All of these factors combine to make AEW Dark such a fun, special show that every wrestling fan should check out. Here’s to the next 100!

A Look into Adam Cole’s Contract Situation

Photo Credit: WWE

CM Punk and Bryan Danielson, Bray Wyatt, and now Adam Cole. The internet has been set ablaze over the past month with major wrestling news, and it doesn’t seem to be coming to a halt anytime soon. As exclusively reported by WrestlingINC’s Raj Giri, Adam Cole’s contract with WWE is set to expire after SummerSlam. This comes as a surprise, as after Adam Cole Watch late last year, it was the general understanding that his contract ran through 2024. It turns out that isn’t the case, and Cole’s deal was actually set to expire after June’s Great American Bash before he extended it to the end of this month. Mike Johnson of PWInsider adds to the report that some WWE officials were surprised by Cole’s contract, being under the impression that he was at least signed to the company for the rest of the year. Johnson adds the contract debacle, “very much lines up with the timing of the departureĀ of [Senior Director of Talent Development] Canyon Ceman.”

The immediate thought on such a short extension is Cole’s planned exit of WWE after an illustrious four year run that saw him debut as NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn III went off the air, forming the Undisputed Era in the process. According to talkSPORT’s Alex McCarthy, that is indeed the case, as Cole signed the extension in order to put over former stablemate Kyle O’Reilly at the upcoming TakeOver 36 event the night after SummerSlam. What had been thought of as the feud that may see Adam Cole off to the main roster could very well be the feud that sees him out of the company. The obvious destination for Cole would be joining his friends and girlfriends in AEW, allowing him the freedom to work other promotions as well.