New NWA Lone Star Heavyweight Champion crowned in controversial finish to Cypress event
By: Phillip Barnard, Houston Pro Wrestling Examiner
If you thought you had a grip on how things were going at NWA Houston as of late, you probably woke up Saturday morning and realized EVERYTHING has changed. Amidst the return of several stars from the Tennessee-based NWA Top Rope promotion, two new champions were crowned this past Friday night at the Cypress VFW.
The night started on a somber note, as "One Man" Mike Dell and NWA Lone Star CEO Tony Brooklyn stood in the ring for a 10-bell salute for Cameron "Spiro" Bates. It was revealed that Spiro had passed away last week and was a popular acquaintance among several of the NWA Houston stars, especially Dell. Prior to the 10-bell, Dell fought back tears as he provided an emotional tribute to his friend, that concluded with Spiro's entrance music being played. It was a touching moment, as the entire NWA Houston roster stood at ringside to celebrate the life of a person that was known to be one of the most respected people in the Texas wrestling community.
The opening match featured former NWA Lone Star Tag Team Champions, The Crusaders (Pop'n Lock) taking on NWA Top Rope's Derek Neal and Hammer Jack. Neal and Lock captured everybody's attention early, exchanging reversals and not allowing the other to gain a decided advantage. The finish came when The Crusaders used double-team maneuvers to their advantage. Neal fell victim to a combination sideslam/neck breaker from the popular duo.
One of the biggest names ever to ring through the ears of Cypress fans is that of Chaz Taylor. He was set for action against The Grappler. Knowing next to nothing about the masked star, Chaz was at somewhat of a disadvantage. The match was back and forth for several minutes, and The Grappler seemingly had things in firm control after doing some damage to the arm of Chaz. But lack of focus cost The Grappler, as Chaz caught him napping with a brutal kick to the jaw. That proved to be the final nail, as Chaz made the cover and picked up the pin fall victory.
Back on October 7, "The Modern Day Hero" Kevin Douglas took the NWA Lone Star Junior Heavyweight Championship to Charlotte, North Carolina. He competed and was victorious in a one-night tournament where he was crowned NWA World Junior Heavyweight Champion. That forced him to relinquish the NWA Lone Star Junior title. The road soon after was paved with a lot of bumps, as he has been sidelined with an ankle injury he suffered a month ago during a match in Cypress. NWA Lone Star CEO Tony Brooklyn brought Douglas out for a few words. It was noted that Douglas had not yet been cleared by doctors to compete and Brooklyn wouldn't allow him to have a match. Before Douglas could say much, Rudy Russo walked to the ring with a microphone. He basically called Douglas a coward and accused him of faking the ankle injury. He then slapped Douglas, which sparked a brawl between the two and Douglas tossed Russo out of the ring. An enraged Russo grabbed the mic again and said he knew that was coming and came with a backup plan. He brought out Ken Carson, DJ King and Silky Baines. The trio then launched a vicious assault on the champion. The beating finished with Russo holding a can of yellow spray paint and marking Douglas' back. The three celebrated their actions and walked off.
The ladies were on deck next, as Barbi Hayden and Angel Blue looked to settle their issues that have been brewing over the last couple of months. In October, Angel helped Jen-Alise win the NWA Lone Star Women's Championship from Hayden, and then spent most of the November event trying to catch the eye of Ken Carson. Hayden returned with revenge on her mind, but it was Angel who dominated more than 10 minutes of this match. A desperation clothesline out of the corner turned the match back into Barbi's favor, and set her up moments later for a decisive tilt-a-whirl slam that led to a pin fall. But as Barbi was celebrating, Angel got back to her feet and put the boots to the former champion and attempted to choke her out. To the surprise of everybody, a less than friendly Jen-Alise hit the ring and made a shocking save. When asked why she would save the person she's spent all year battling, Jen-Alise simply stated she was sick of Barbi constantly getting beat down by Ken Carson and other women without any help. They embraced and Jen-Alise helped Barbi to the back.
From there it was time for the highly-anticipated "Christmas Rumble" match. This was a 25+ person battle royal, where the winner would receive a $10,000 CD from TranStar Federal Credit Union that could either keep or cash in on a title match of their choice. The first two entrants were surprising, as they were the NWA Lone Star Tag Team Champions, "Benchmark" Silky Baines and "The Texas Torture Machine" DJ King. The two refused to compete against each other, and waited on the next person to enter. The 3rd entry was Crusader Pop, and he was quickly dismissed by the reigning tag champions. This would be the story for the first few entrants. They would enter, and then get tossed over the top rope. Then the duo would wait for the next person.
One of the most comical aspects of the battle royal came from "The Hebrew Phenom" David Stahr. The #6 entry into the Rumble came in with high hopes of winning the $10,000 prize. But his attention was abruptly interrupted by Tony Brooklyn, who felt it necessary to inform the crowd that somebody had lost a $10 bill. Stahr immediately dove over the top rope and began searching for the $10 bill, then realized the monumental error that he had mistakenly eliminated himself. He later stated that he searched everywhere for the money, but hours later find some loose change under Tugboat Taylor's truck in the parking lot.
Speaking of Tugboat, it seemed at one point that HE was going to enter the brawl and try to take the prize for himself. Instead, he sent the entire ringside security team to the ring. After several minutes of trying to defend themselves, they were all simultaneously disposed by Chaz Taylor, Ken Carson, and the tag team champions. Amazingly enough, Silky and DJ were still in the match at the halfway point.
An interesting note from the match was the entrance by Black Diamond. Over the last few months, Ken Carson has been accusing him to be his former tag team partner Joey Diamond, who lost a Loser-Leaves-Town match against Carson over the summer. Carson picked this fight carefully, and was able to unmask the man who he thought was his former friend and partner. However to his surprise, it was NOT Joey Diamond. It was actually a gentleman by the name of Dave Duperon. There is little known about Duperon at this point, and nothing has been confirmed if he is in fact a new member to the NWA Houston roster or if more games are being played to get inside the head of Carson.
However the winner of the battle royal would be none other than Ken Carson. The man who has been the center of controversy the last several months actually disappeared for awhile and hid out of everybody's view. While everybody had forgotten about him, the match continued. Psycho Circus members "Showtime" Scot Summers and "One Man" Mike Dell thought they were the final two remaining in the ring and began brawling. As they were against the ropes trying to eliminate each other, Carson pulled the huge upset card by sliding back into the ring and eliminating both Dell and Summers. Afterward, Carson was asked whether he would keep the TranStar CD or if he would cash it in for a title shot. Carson replied he could get a title shot anytime he wanted, and he was taking the money. Below is order of entry for the Christmas Rumble match.
"Benchmark" Silky Baines (elim. by Chaz Taylor)
"The Texas Torture Machine" DJ King (elim. by Chaz Taylor)
Crusader Pop (elim. by Silky Baines)
Derek Neal (elim. by Silky Baines)
Crusader Lock (elim. by Silky Baines)
"The Hebrew Phenom" David Stahr (self-eliminated)
"Gentleman" Jack Jameson (eliminated himself)
Bolt Brady (elim. by Silky Baines)
The Grappler (elim. by Silky Baines)
"The Legend" Mr. B (elim. by Silky Baines)
NWA Houston Security team (elim. by Silky Baines, Ken Carson, DJ King, Chaz Taylor)
Black Diamond (Eliminated by Security Team, unmasked to be David Duperon)
Ken Carson -WINNER
Chaz Taylor (elim. by Wallace Gordon)
"The Scottish Nightmare" Wallace Gordon (elim. by Alex Reigns)
Jen-Alise (elim. by Angel Blue)
Angel Blue (self-eliminated while pulling Barbi Hayden over the top rope)
Alex Reigns (elim. by Wallace Gordon)
Barbi Hayden (elim. by Angel Blue)
Arrick Andrews (elim. by Scot Summers)
Rudy Russo (elim. by Scot Summers)
"Showtime" Scot Summers (elim. by Ken Carson)
Bubba Dumplins (elim. by Scot Summers, Arrick Andrews, Hammer Jack, Mike Dell, and Jasper Davis)
Kit Carmichael (elim. by Big Ricky)
Big Ricky (elim. by Scot Summers)
Hammer Jack (elim. by Mike Dell)
"One Man" Mike Dell (elim. by Ken Carson)
"The Name That Entertains" Jasper Davis (elim. by Hammer Jack)
Following a brief intermission, fans were ready for a match where the winner would claim the vacated NWA Lone Star Junior Heavyweight Championship. Rudy Russo was set to face Bolt Brady in what was sure to be a highly competitive match. Brady started off strong, sending Russo to the outside. After catching a quick breather, Russo settled down and gained control of the match. Midway through the contest, Brady attempted a butterfly suplex but it was countered by Russo into a beautiful Tiger Bomb. Brady would get back into control briefly, but his love for high-flying would cost him in a big way. After trying to leapfrog over Russo, Brady was caught mid-flight and viciously dropped face-first to the mat. Russo rolled Brady over for the pin and became the new NWA Lone Star Junior Heavyweight Champion.
Up next, it was time for a special 6-person tag team match with a couple of twists. Ken Carson was set to team up with the tag champions, Silky Baines and DJ King, to face the combination of Psycho Circus members Scot Summers and Mike Dell. It was announced a month ago that Summers and Dell would be allowed to choose their own partner after an altercation with Carson led to the match. They decided look within the Circus and announce NWA Lone Star Women's Champion Jen-Alise as their partner, somebody who Summers said hated Carson more than even he and Dell did. From there, Carson's night got worse. He had been involved in a personal feud with NWA Board of Directors member Mike Sircy this year, and even going so far as to shave Sircy's head back in September. So you can imagine the look on Carson's face when Sircy was announced as the special referee for the match. Once the match finally got started, it was back and forth all the way through. But all of Carson's attempts to stay away from Summers would fail. He fell victim to a brain buster from Summers and a top rope elbow drop from Dell. Then he suffered the ultimate insult, as Jen-Alise was brought in to make the pin.
Following the match, the Psycho Circus stood victorious and satisfied with their win. Summers then grabbed the mic and said he was going to watch Jasper Davis and Arrick Andrews blow the roof off the building in the main event, and then added salt to Carson's wound by reminding him that he just got pinned by a girl.
Tony Brooklyn then announced that the NWA Women's Tag Team Titles were being revived and Cypress would get to see an opening round match in a tournament to declare new champions. Jen-Alise would team with her new ally Barbi Hayden to face Angel Blue and Pink. Also, based on what had happened earlier between Rudy Russo and Kevin Douglas, Brooklyn announced that Russo would get a shot at Douglas...but NOT for Douglas' title. The two will face each other in a grudge match. And then Brooklyn made a huge announcement. He noted that on January 13, former WWE/TNA star Lance Hoyt would be bringing the recently revived NWA Texas Heavyweight Championship to Cypress and he will defend it against the ring leader of the Psycho Circus, Scot Summers. That one is sure to be a hard-hitting and potentially explosive confrontation. It's also a golden opportunity for Summers to get his hands on the richest prize in the state of Texas.
From there, it was time for the evening's main event. NWA Top Rope star "The Dragon" Arrick Andrews, who recently became a 3-time NWA Tennessee Heavyweight Champion, was set for his shot at NWA Lone Star Champion, Jasper Davis. The two put on a tremendous match for the Cypress crowd. They were on their feet throughout the entire match and was solidly behind "The Name That Entertains." Both Andrews and Davis took turns thrashing each other all over the ring and even outside the ring. But then things just rolled downhill from there. Jasper and Arrick found themselves on the top rope, completely unaware how close they were to the 30-minute time limit set for the match. As Arrick brought Jasper back into the ring courtesy of a thunderous superplex, it seemed that the move took just as much out of the champion as it did for the challenger. But before either man could get back to their feet, the bell rang. The 30-minute time limit had expired and the match had ended in a draw. As NWA championship rules state, a championship cannot change hands on a time-limit draw so Jasper remains your NWA Lone Star Champion. Then the unthinkable happened.
As both men lay on the canvas, none other than Ken Carson bolted for the ring and had his $10,000 check in hand. He grabbed Mike Sircy and told him he was cashing in the money for an immediate shot at an unsuspecting champion. Before anybody could blink, Carson had covered Jasper. Sircy hit the mat to make the count and as he counted two, he hesitated. Carson ordered him to make the deciding count, and Sircy had no choice. His hand hit the mat a third time and was forced to call for the bell. Carson had won the match and the title.
Carson refused comment after the match, saying he had a night full of celebration and partying ahead of him. He went so far as to tell the crowd to leave the building, because they didn't deserve to see him in the ring with his title. As the crowd looked on with crushing disbelief, the disturbing reality had set in - Ken Carson is your NEW NWA Lone Star Heavyweight Champion.
With that said, Carson now looks to the road ahead. As he closes out the year as champion, NWA Houston prepares to kick off the 2012 campaign with an event titled "Next Level" on January 13. Information about that event will be released here as soon as it is made available. In the meantime, check out the NWA Houston website and their Facebook page.