KSWA Committee [Almost] Always Showcases Most Coveted Prize In FanFest Main Event
December 5, 2014
by Trapper Tom, Ring Announcer/Wrestling Journalist
With appearances from some of the biggest “legends” in professional wrestling to local celebrities and other surprises—in addition to the biggest toy drive of its kind—the Keystone State Wrestling Alliance FanFest is a spectacle that grows every year. That being noted, some things remain the same; including defense of the most important Single’s title in the Commonwealth: the KSWA World Heavyweight Champions. While this year is no exception, it’s interesting to note how the championship has become so exclusive and significant.
At the very first KSWA FanFest, on December 3, 2005, the promotion’s heavyweight title was not defended in the Main Event. This is the only time the title has not been featured in the last match of the night.
It’s quite arguable that the KSWA’s most popular Megastar was La Lucha, the “Mayor of Mexico City” and superhero of sorts to a growing fan base. He had just been featured on the front page of Pittsburgh City Paper, the region’s top entertainment and news weekly. His popularity was soaring and he was wrestling primarily as a tag team participant. He and Justin Sane defeated “The King” Del Douglas in what ended up being a handicap match when fellow tag team champion Tommy Faime abruptly retired before the match. La Lucha and Sane became KSWA tag team champions.
The KSWA heavyweight title holder at the time was “Dr. Devastation” Lou Martin. He had won his first heavyweight championship in January, 2004 and ultimately wouldn’t lose it until 2006. Then a fan-favorite, Martin successfully defended against the Afghani Assault Weapon—Ali Kaida—who was then anything but a hero—earlier in the evening. The match was a titanic struggle for Martin against the much-larger and stronger Kaida.
Kaida would ultimately challenge for the KSWA heavyweight title as part of three different FanFests.
On December 2, 2006, KSWA FanFest would officially become the organization’s most popular event when well over 300 Krazies broke an attendance record. In the last match of the night, La Lucha made “The Enforcer” Shawn Blanchard tap out as The Latin Assassin held VIP Advisor Frank Durso in a strait-jacket. This match, considered one of the most defining moments in the history of the KSWA, truly elevated the heavyweight championship into a World Title category.
On December 1, 2007, “Double-A” Anthony Alexander completed a year-long mission by defeating “The Enforcer” Shawn Blanchard for the KSWA World Heavyweight title. The Alexander/Blanchard feud would help define that time in KSWA lore. Alexander would hold onto the strap for the next 1 ½ years.
As part of that title reign, on December 6, 2008 during that FanFest Main Event, Anthony Alexander would hold off the charge of Ali Kaida in a Boot Camp Match. The match was a culmination of a year-long battle between the two Megastars.
Between FanFest/Toy Drive celebrations (in July, 2009 to be more specific), Alexander lost the KSWA World Title to Shawn Blanchard. Then, The Latin Assassin rose to the forefront. At FanFest, on December 5, 2009 Blanchard defeated Latin Assassin and retained the belt when Alexander turned on Latin! In 2010, the KSWA Krazies literally turned their backs on Alexander. He would never fully recover from that response to his joining the VIPs.
By December 4, 2010 and FanFest/Toy Drive 2014, The Latin Assassin had defeated Shawn Blanchard and was challenged by Ali Kaida. A long feud took place over the months leading to FanFest. At the main event of that event, Latin Assassin successfully defended the belt.
Over the next few months of 2011, Ali Kaida would defeat The Latin Assassin (in July 2011 to be more specific), then would steam roll his way to FanFest on December 3, 2011. There, Mitch Napier defeated Shawn Blanchard, The Latin Assassin & Ali Kaida to win the KSWA Heavyweight Title in a Fatal Four Way Match. Then, seconds later, Lou Martin would cash in his Battle Bowl ticket at the very last second, deliver a Death Certificate to Napier and win KSWA World Heavyweight Title gold for the second time. The FanFest attendance would top 500 Krazies for the very first time (and Pittsburgh police estimated that as many as 250 were turned away at the door to risk overcrowding).
Martin was an active and aggressive champion in 2012.
He would take on all comers, including the 7-foot-tall Jack Massacre, but at FanFest/Toy Drive on December 8, 2012, Lou Martin would successfully defend against the Ohio Valley Pepperpot, Ric Rumsky in a brutal Strap Match. Neither Megastar would call that match a mat classic, but the attendance record would be broken again.
On December 7, 2013, FanFest/Toy Drive would take on another, whole new dynamic. Shane Starr would announce earlier in the year that he would cash in his Battle Bowl World Title shot against Lou Martin during the December Classic. Starr was the reigning Golden Triangle Champion. To add more weight to the situation, Starr put his own title on the line as well. In one of the hardest-hitting, best FanFest Main Event matches, Shane Starr prevailed and became the first-ever Golden Triangle and KSWA World Heavyweight Champion.
Challenger J-Ru played a slightly different tactic by waving his Battle Bowl opportunity for the belt all year long. Most observers thought he’d wait until the biggest event of the year to officially take his shot, and it will be this Saturday, December 6, 2014 at the Teamster Temple in the Lawrenceville neighborhood within the city of Pittsburgh (the first-ever FanFest/Toy Drive held outside the confines of the former KSWA Arena). KSWA World Heavyweight Champion Shane Starr is ready for “The Future.”
KSWA FanFest/Toy Drive is this Saturday, December 6, 2014 at 4701 Butler Street in the Lawrenceville neighborhood within the city of Pittsburgh. Bell time is 7:30 p.m.