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By Larry Goodman on 1/5/2019 6:00 AM

Georgia Premier Wrestling War Games Report from Canton - December 29, 2018

Georgia Premier Wrestling finished out 2018 with the company’s first ever War Games match.

In so doing, GPW pulled off one of the hottest and most surprising angles of the year.

As War Games go, the match itself was nothing special. But GPW hit pay dirt with the angle. Fans were in a state of shock after seeing GPW co-owner Darrell Morris turn against his own company. Shock turned to outrage. Morris was holed in the building for 90 minutes after the show as fans waited to confront him.

Morris and the evil Logan Chase had been at each other’s throats for months. This was the night Team Chase was going to get their comeuppance. Instead, Morris handed Team Chase the match and the night ended with co-owner “Big Wood” Greg Hullender laid out in the ring at the hands of Morris’ handpicked mystery guy.

It will be interesting to see where this angle goes moving into the new year. Who is going to run the company? What could motivate Morris, who has been a model of honor and propriety, to do such a thing?

Attendance at the Old Buffington School Gym was 275. GPW has been in the 200 range since returning to the gym so the War Games gave them a boost.

GPW isn’t going to set the world on fire with their shows. Morris and Hullender have no illusions on that score. They consistently put on solid shows that satisfy their fanbase. GPW has developed and maintained a loyal core following. The babyfaces are all over. The heels are uniformly hated. Wrestlers with strong technical fundamentals and/or superb athleticism really stand out because GPW doesn’t all that many of them. Everyone has to start somewhere, and for many young wrestlers that somewhere is GPW.

Morris and Chase opened the show with a round of verbal jousting regarding the War Games.and their respective mystery team members. Morris vowed to knock Chase’s head off if he stuck his nose in the match. Chase cast doubt on Morris’ ability to find someone to replace the injured Ray Ray and promised his side would have The Ultimate Surprise.

(1) Georgia Heat (Cody Roberts & Mr. Showtime) defeated Relenza (King Guruda & Takura) to retain the GPW tag titles in 7:35. GA Heat over big with the GPW faithful. Relenza were billed from the Land or the Rising Sun. The Aztec Empire would be closer to the truth. Takura faked an ankle injury to lure Showtime into letting down his guard. A “USA” chant ensued as Relenza got heat in Showtime. Takura received a self-inflicted hotshot when his head slipped outside the top rope. It was strange. Hot tag and right to the finish – a Michinoku Driver by Roberts followed by Showtime’s frogsplash for the pin on Garuda. This was a totally ordinary match. The work wasn’t horrible but it wasn’t crisp either.

(2) Shalandra Royal defeated Black Widow in 5:13. This was a bad match, although not a bad outing for Royal given it was only the second match of her career. Royal has appealing energy, works hard and is clearly getting good training at One Fall. She needs to do something about her hair. Widow needs to do something about her presentation, which screams low level indy. Royal threw a dropkick that never got higher than Widow’s thigh. Royal evaded Widow’s mad charge into the corner and pinned her with a schoolboy.

Postmatch - Thunder Blonde came out of the crowd and laid Royal out with a Samoan drop. Blonde cut a good promo. She needs to do something about those shorts or at least stop pulling at them. The gist of Blonde’s promo was this -- Royal was getting opportunities on a silver platter that bigger, stronger people like her were trying to earn.


(3) “Boogie Woogie Boy” Gary Valiant & GPW Cruiserweight Champion Torque defeated Michael Stevens & “Kevin Dunn in 9:59. Valiant was billed as Jimmy’s son. He worked the crowd like crazy until he won them over. Valiant literally swept ring announcer Miss Brittany off her feet with a kiss. Valiant’s antics included sticking his finger up Dunn’s butt…twice. Hey, it popped the crowd in Canton. A 15 second exchange between Stevens and Torque provided the first glimmer of good wrestling so far tonight. Valiant took the heat. He bumped big and sold a knee injury like the pain was unbearable. “Boogie” chant leading into the hot tag. The finish saw Valiant rescue Torque from a double suplex and give Dunn a stunner. Torque then pinned Dunn with a 450. The comedy worked. The fans were entertained. Valiant’s brand of babyface selling was the norm 30 years ago. It looks overdone in 2018 but was nevertheless effective in this case.

Postmatch – Valiant pulled down his tights to show off his “oh mercy” underwear and sneaked a kiss on Torque while selling the knee the entire time.

(4) “The Redneck Above All Rednecks” Kavron Kanyon defeated former GPW Champion “Michigan Muscle” Cody Vance in 6:20. The work was fine. They had some good ideas if only they had slowed down enough to let them sink in. Vance has a great look but his facial expressions are way too muted. Kanyon missed a HUGE top rope leg drop. Vance hit his finisher but didn’t get all of it and Kanyon kicked out. Vance missed a high boot and Kanyon pinned him clean with the STO. The finish was nicely done. I was surprised to see Kanyon go over until I remembered Vance worked the last Southern Honor show.

Intermission to set up the cage: ACTION Wrestling promoter Matt Griffin helped with the cage. So did Takura. Another sign of the times I guess - a heel wrestler helping to set up the cage.

(5) War Games: Team Logan Chase (QT Marshall & GPW Southern States Champion Jaxson Cassel & Erik Havok & Ryan Rembrandt with Logan Chase) defeated Team GPW (Cuzin Shaggy & Cuzin Cletus & Talon Williams & Chico Imperio with Darrell Morris) in 18:07. Team Chase “earned” the man advantage via cheating their way to victory in a match on the previous show. Morris was wearing bib overalls to match Good Ole Boys. Marshall was wearing the dress per the stipulation of his loss to Gangrel. A chain, a board, a walker and a pipe were at the ready. Marshall and Shaggy worked the first five minutes. Nice choice. The work was good and the action was compelling. Shaggy’s aerial moves looked like gold they way Marshall was taking them. Shaggy pulled Marshall’s dress off and put it to good use. Marshall hit Shaggy with the board. Havok entered. Shaggy put up a hell of a fight against the odds. Cletus entered and squashed both heels in the corner, causing Marshall to fall on Havok’s crotch. Good Ole Boys ruled until Cassel entered with a low blow on Cletus. Cassel has the look of a thoroughbred. It was 3 on 2 with the heels in control. Williams entered and absolutely cleaned house on all three heels. The mystery heel was Rembrandt. That’s all Chase had for the ultimate surprise? Marshall used the board. Cletus and Shaggy were both busted open. Cletus got great color. Morris’ secret weapon was the masked Imperio. Whoever he was, the guy was obviously a skilled wrestler. The big spot of the match was Shaggy doing a crossbody off the top of the cage to save Cletus from certain doom. Cletus sent Marshall into all four sides of the cage and splashed him. Chase took matters into his own hands by entering the cage and waffling Cletus with a chair. Morris entered…took the chair from Chase…and slugged Cletus. The crowd was in disbelief as Rembrandt pinned Cletus.

Shock turned to rage and a “Darrell sucks” chant. Team Chase beat Team GPW to a pulp as Morris watched with glee. Hullender had seen enough. Woody made his way into the ring with a piece of pipe, but before he could use it, the masked guy unmasked revealing Drew Delight. He blasted Woody from behind, repeatedly waffled the fallen Wood with the chair, then turned the chair over to Morris for three shots of his own on Woody.

The ending to this show was some kind of pandemonium. This was a turn nobody saw coming. Delight was the perfect choice as Darrell’s guy. He’s a great heel and tried to gain control of GPW in a previous run. There were concerns that fans would go after Morris as he tried to exit but that didn’t happen. However, Morris stayed in the building until all the fans outside dispersed.

NOTES: GPW's next show is January 12 at Buffington School Gym with Cassel vs. Brent Banner for the Southern States title, Torque vs. Rembrandt for the GPW cruiserweight title, GA Heat vs. Walker County Line for the GPW tag title and Thunder Blonde vs. Royal announced...GPW is bringing in Bullet Bob Armstrong on January 26...The referees were Tyler Thomas, Jonathan Chastain and Slim...Lamar Diggs was in the house helping out. My condolences to YJ from Ox's Ring Rentals on the passing of his father.