January 1, 2012
by Trapper Tom, Ring Announcer/Wrestling Journalist
The Legion of the Apocalypse may be without gold for the first time in 2011, but select members of the stable ranked well on the year-end Keystone State Wrestling Alliance website polling.
In the most shocking development, now-former Golden Triangle Champion Bobby Badfingers ran away with the "Wrestler of the Year" award, garnering 55% of the online balloting. The second-closest Megastar in the voting was now-former KSWA World Champion Mitch Napier. Napier, who won the Heavyweight Championship at FanFest, only to lose it moments later by "Dr. Devastation" Lou Martin, recorded 33% of the voting. The Latin Assassin, who held the KSWA heavyweight championship this time last year, came in third with seven-percent of the votes. Ali Kaida, who lost the KSWA championship at FanFest without the benefit of being pinned, had five-percent of the voting.
The Internet voting certainly had a global feel. Some Middle Eastern URL's had to record at least some of the voting for Ali Kaida. More interestingly, Bobby Badfingers' 55% of the voting was the exact percentage fellow Chicago street thug Rahm Emanuel had to win the Chicago Mayor's race in February. The KSWA's "Most Popular Wrestler" was a stunning development. The legendary Lord Zoltan, one half of the Tag Team Champions (see below) won by an incredible 67% of the voting. Zoltan, who started 2011 away from active competition--and as a dastardly friend of the VIP's--surprised all of the KSWA Krazies by returning in June for Heatwave Havoc. His Lordship double-noggin-knockered Shawn Blanchard and Lou Martin, thus foiling his alliance with the-then KSWA tag team champions. In recent months, Zoltan has danced his way to incredible success.
Mayor Mystery, the leader of the Legion of the Apocalypse, bested Frank Durso in the race for Manager of the Year. Again benefiting from Badfinger's Windy City roots, Mayor Mystery stomped Durso by a 63% to 37% ratio. It should also be noted that since Gentleman Joe Perri moved from the Manager's post to a position in management as Kommissioner, the Manager of the Year race was only a two-person affair.
In another runaway, the reigning KSWA Tag Team Champions--Party Gras--handily one the Tag Team of the Year award. At this time last year, both Justin Sane and Lord Zoltan's careers in the KSWA were in flux. Zoltan had been tagging with Blood Beast and lost a tag match against Badfingers and Napier at FanFest. Meanwhile, Justin Sane was nowhere to be found. Since that time, Sane won a chance at the KSWA Tag Team championship and in the Spring found an eccentric tag team partner with Lord Zoltan. The duo won the straps over the Independence Day weekend from the VIPs and haven't looked back. Arguably the most popular tag team champions in KSWA history, Party Gras is riding high after defeating a litany of challengers. Uber-popular Kris Kash and Shane Starr came in second at 26% of the voting. "Canadian Perfection" Drew Belanger and J.P. Goulet were at nine-percent, and "The King" Del Douglas and "The Jester" filled out the ballot at two-percent.
With a battery of new names and faces gracing top Internet poll voting, it should be noted that perennial bad guy "The Enforcer" Shawn Blanchard once again grabbed the "Most Hated" mantle. Blanchard is so disliked that he even somehow surprised the completely un-likeable "Afghani Assault Weapon" Ali Kaida, 58% to 38%. New KSWA Heavyweight Champion "Dr. Devastation" Lou Martin and "The King" Del Douglas both clocked in at two-percent. The "Most Improved" Wrestler award is another interesting choice in "The Jester." King Douglas' ward has become an invaluable wing man in Millvale. While not always recording a "win" in the record books, "The Jester" continues to show vast improvement and an agile skill set for a wrestler his size. Cart-wheeling to an impressive 59% of the voting, only Jay Flash also recorded votes in the double-digit rating, with 25% of the votes. Former and first Junior-Heavyweight Champion "Ice Man" Tony Johnson was next with eight-percent and "Canadian Perfection" Drew Belanger and J.P. Goulet were added to the voting as a single-entity, at seven-percent.
"Match of the Year" was truly one of 2011's best: Mitch Napier v. Shawn Blanchard for the final of the Joe Abby Memorial Tournament. Napier came into the tournament on a roll, and defeating Blanchard in a match "The Enforcer" has excelled in the past really elevated the Midwestern. Lou Martin's winning of the Battle Bowl last January was an epic way to start the year, and it helped the KSWA Champ springboard one of the most dubious tricks in the promotion's history. The lone tag team match on the list, Kris Kash and Shane Starr's confrontation with "Canadian Perfection" was at eight-percent of the voting and the match between Ali Kaida and The Latin Assassin earned six-percent of the voting.
And in the "Feud of the Year," Jay Flash's relentless pursuit of the Bobby Badfingers and the Golden Triangle Championship lead the way with 47%. In the closest voting of the season, The Latin Assassin and Ali Kaida's ongoing feud was at 42%. Kash/Starr v. Belanger/Goulet was at eight-percent and the chronicles of Del Douglas and Tony Johnson, in which the combatants traded the Jr Heavyweight Championship in Millvale, rounded out the voting at two-percent. Website voting was overseen by webmaster Marty Lyons, the KSWA Championship Committee and KSWA Owner Bobby O.