June 9, 2013
by Trapper Tom, Ring Announcer/Wrestling Journalist
Keystone State Wrestling Alliance owner Bobby O dropped the biggest bombshell he had in his arsenal recently when he committed Heavyweight Champion “Dr. Devastation” Lou Martin to defendant his longtime friend “The Enforcer” Shawn Blanchard. And to add more gunpowder to that explosive situation, Bobby O named himself special guest referee.
For months, the VIPs have been at logger heads with Bobby O. In actuality, he founders of the VIPs have—since their inception—been a thorn in the side of KSWA management since 2000. Rarely has the duo ever faced each other. In fact, the last time they did was when Blanchard beat Martin (and Anthony Alexander in a Triple Threat Match) for the KSWA Championship on April 1, 2006. At that time they were not best of friends. When Martin was champion from 2004-2006, the VIPs met two additional times. On January 14, 2006, Blanchard got the duke over Martin by disqualification. The next month, February 19, Martin retained over Blanchard.
When Blanchard has held the belt, he’s retained over Martin four times. The last time these two Megastars have met was on September 15, 2007 at Millvale Days.
The historic implications of this match are significant. Blanchard is a five-time former KSWA champion eagerly awaiting his record-extending sixth run. Currently in the midst of his second reign, Martin is the only other wrestler in the promotion’s annuals to hold the strap more than once.
KSWA Owner Bobby O is no stranger to the drama that surrounds the VIPs. Blanchard and Martin have taken him to the verbal and physical wood shed and it’s believed that O hopes to gain a bit of revenge by having the VIPs tangle with each other.
In other action, The Commonwealth’s most significant tag team belts will not be contested when current title holders “The King” Del Douglas and The Jester suit up. They are set to take on current Golden Triangle Champion “The Future” Shane Starr and Five Star Champion Kris Kash. None of their straps are up for grabs at Heatwave Havoc.
If Kash and Starr win, they will gain a future shot at Tag Team gold. If Douglas and Jester are victorious, they will get chances at the Singles’ belts later this year.
Starr has been a KSWA Tag Team Champion on two different occasions, once as a member of the dreaded VIPs in 2009 and once (at Heatwave Havoc) in 2010 with Kash. With Kash, Starr held the tag belts for 25 weeks. The duo has long been considered top contenders for tag team gold, but had other agendas when Party Gras had a record-breaking run of 75 weeks. But now Kash and Starr return to their roots: the tag team division.
The tag team ranks has always been one of the KSWA’s strong suits. From the VIPs to the International Thugs to Ax and Smash—Demolition—as well as Justin Sane and Lord Zoltan, KSWA Tag Teams have long been stellar. Competitors for the titles—from the Legion of the Apocalypse, Jay Flash and Tony Johnson, Edric Everhart and Tyler Cross as was as the Mercenaries continue to make it a sought-after commodity.
After winning the Tag Team belts at FanFest, Douglas and The Jester have held on via two count-outs and a win over Flash and Johnson (who had already worked a match with Everhart and Cross). The champions are not tearing up the division, but no one expected devious Douglas to launch into an impressive array of defenses. Douglas has also been the Golden Triangle Champion on two different occassions. In 2009 he had a fued with Kash in which the belt transferred between them for a summer.
Since winning the 5-Star Championship at FanFest, Kash has defeated J-Ru, Shawn Blanchard and Mitch Napier in a battle of fan favorites. As expected, Kash have proven to be a fighting champion.
Since winning the Golden Triangle Championship at Millvale Days in September of last year, Starr has also gone on an impressive run. Starr has pushed aside Blanchard on a couple of occasions, and in front of his hometown crowd of Sharpsburg, PA, defeated Bobby Badfingers and Douglas in a Triple Threat Main Event. He has taken on Badfingers as well as Legion of the Apocalypse band mate Jonny Axx in show-stealing matches. His defense against Axx is already an early favorite for Match of the Year. Starr has also rebuffed J-Ru in another strong outing.
Starr mounted an unprecedented victory on May 4th’s MAYhem when he made Blanchard tap out in a mere seven seconds. Blanchard tried to taunt the young champion, but ended up on the business end of Sharpsburg Sharpshooter in an exaggerated heartbeat.
June 15 is going to be a different story as Kash and Starr once again just aboard the Tag Team horse for a shot at distinction. The youngsters have a legitimate shot at cementing themselves as a true KSWA leaders if sometime down the road they can once again grab tag team gold. That being noted, Douglas and The Jester have also proven they are not push-overs. They battled their ways to the belts and have intention of giving them up anytime soon.
One of the most underappreciated, yet absolutely intriguing matches set for “Heatwave Havoc” is the showdown between Jonny Axx and Bobby Badfingers.
These two Megastars have had impactful runs in the KSWA—both have tasted Championship gold—but in recent months have been involved in the dominant squad that could have been. The Legion of the Apocalypse started strong, under the strong influence of Mayor Mystery. With Badfingers, Axx, The Blood Beast and Ali Kaida, the quartet was poised to be the most destructive force the KSWA has ever seen. But when Mayor Mystery was fired by KSWA Owner Bobby O after too much interference, the group seemingly lost its way.
Without a clear leader (some say Kaida was the obvious choice but ultimately too combative), the Legion began to split at the seams. The Blood Beast and Ali Kaida have even been involved in a series of matches, which exacerbated the situation. Meanwhile, Axx and Badfingers worked together in the Joey Abby Memorial Tournament, making it all the way to the finals. Although Jay Flash and Tony Johnson won a shot at the KSWA Tag Team gold, the Axx/Badfingers teaming left most observers wondering what was going to happen with the Legion’s veteran team.
On May 4, Axx won a Fatal Four way showdown with the other members of the Legion. The KSWA Championship committee was hoping the Fatal Four way would shake out the ills that the group experiences. Some observers hoped that the meeting would tear the foursome apart for good. Surprisingly, that didn’t happen.
Now, Axx faces Badfingers one-on-one for the first time. Since arriving in the KSWA on June 27, 2009, Bobby Badfingers has been near gold. On May 7, 2011 he won the Golden Triangle Championship and held onto it until the biggest event of the year, FanFest 2011. In front of a then-record-breaking crowd, Jay Flash beat the Windy City Brawler for the Golden Triangle championship.
Since his arrival in the KSWA on August 13, 2011, Axx has too been a valuable cog in the championship scene. In less than a competitive year, May 5, 2012 Axx seemingly upset Shane Starr for what was then the Jr. Heavyweight Championship. Through trickery or something more devious, Mayor Mystery construed a scenario in which Axx competed for that belt, despite outweighing the 200 lb weight limit. It is believed that Mayor Mystery swayed the International Committee for Weights and Measures into using an antiquated Seers-vs-Pounds measurement system, and still lied about the outcome. By any account, Axx outweighed the limit by 23.819 Seers. Nevertheless, Axx beat Starr for the Jr. Heavyweight Championship and three days later Mayor Mystery somehow “rebranded” the belt with a petition to its current 5-Star Championship.
Axx was beaten for the belt by Kris Kash on December 8, 2012, in front of what remains the largest independent wrestling crowd in Pittsburgh history.
This matchup features one of the KSWA’s best brawlers in Badfingers and one of its most gifted technicians in Axx. However it should be noted that Badfingers does possess an interesting array of technical moves while Axx has a sharp right fist.
It should also be noted that both wrestlers have had interesting relationships with the Krazies. Badfingers did serve a short time as a fan-favorite before he turned his back on Jay Flash, a feud that ended with a belt change at 2011 FanFest. Axx on the other hand has never really felt the Krazies’ love, but they do appreciate his gutsy all-for-nothing offensive appeal. There could be a day in which they could root for him full-tilt. Could this day be Saturday, June 15?
Jack Massacre and The Latin Assassin are scheduled to take on foes J-Ru and Bulldozer in a tag team match. Edric Everhart will wrestle Mitch Napier while Tyler Cross faces Jay Flash. More matches, including Lord Zoltan and the Mercenaries, have yet to be finalized.
“Heatwave Havoc” is this Saturday, June 15 at the Home of Professional Wrestling in Pittsburgh, the KSWA Arena. Bell time is 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for kids. As always, go to kswa.net for more information or dial 412-726-1762. Card is subject to change.