EWCZINE #201 - March 2020 Mar 20, 2020 16:49:12 GMT -6 Ruthann Hunter, NEVAEH, and 10 more like this
Post by President Mac on Mar 20, 2020 16:49:12 GMT -6
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Letter from the Editor PG 3
- WrestleFest Review PG 4
- Elite 15 Recap PG 5
- Interview with Chris Brock PG 6
- Cover Story: Melody Malone PG 7
- StrangleMania Hype PG 8
- Rookie Spotlight: Nezumi PG 9
- StrangleMania Card PG 10
Letter from the Editor
We're back. That's right. EWCZINE is back with issue 201. Let's be frank, a healthy hiatus has allowed us here at EWCZINE to take time to digest some of the feedback that you the readers had been sharing with us. Now I won't sugarcoat it and say all the feedback was good but we definitely listened and are excited to present to you an inaugural issue for a fresh new season of extreme, season twenty-one to be exact. We will have exciting new content to cater to the hardcore as well as the casual fan.
In this issue we are excited to cover a range of exciting stories and interviews ranging from an excellent review by Randall Cho of the critic-loved WrestleFest that seen a new format that spanned not one but four days with a full schedule of excitement and entertainment that was viewed across the industry as setting a new bar for years to come. We also have our very own Patricia Wolfe tackling an insightful interview with the current Queen of EWC and Undisputed Champion, Melody Malone and not stopping there Patricia Wolfe will be pulling double duty as she contributed a terrific story to hype up the grand-daddy of them all, that's right I am talking about StangleMania Fifteen.
Also covered is a look at one of EWC's fresh new talents in a piece called Rookie Spotlight by Nolan Castle and while on the topic of up and coming, we can't help but to think of EWC's orange brand, Future Stars of Wrestling. Oliver Sheen sits down and talks with FSW General Manager, Chris Brock on what his expectations for the new season and what we can expect.
If you thought last season of EWC was full of surprises, we can only expect this season to go out and do what EWC has always done and that is continue to age like a fine wine and here at EWCZINE we will take you along as we follow the many events of the season.
As Editor, I am proud to be bringing you this publication and thank all our fans that read both the physical and digital. Until next time.
By Randall Cho
It was an event the likes of which had never been seen in the sport of professional wrestling. A festival of not just matches but music, food trucks, live shows, parties and much more. EWC Fans from around the globe converged around the Arles Amphitheatre in Arles France.
20 Matches, 58 Wrestlers, 4 epic days of EWC Action. This was EWC WrestleFest 2019.
The action started out bright and early Friday morning with Samantha “Titaness” Hamilton, sending a stern warning. The Rampage superstar made comments during her autograph signing that she’d be leaving with the Drake Memorial Cup, The International Championship, or perhaps both. That was quickly followed by in-ring action as Jordan Sharpe had just claimed the Combat Championship that President Mac himself had put up for grabs. That didn’t last long, however, as the nefarious Tommy Love took the title with the help of his client Killjoy Ito.
After a brief message from former Undisputed Champion Candy, it was time for the first advertised match of the fest at 11:00 AM. Offered first was a triple threat match between Stormy, Allen Anderson and William Manson. All three looked to be victorious at different points in the match but in the end it was Allen Anderson taking the victory, a major momentum boost for the superstar.
After some shenanigans involving ticket scalping, a pink taco that this writer isn’t going to elaborate on, and an appearance by legendary superstar Shadow Man, the next match was a fatal fourway Ambulance match between Darius, Samuel MacPherson, Jason Rayne and Bandana Joe Porter. A vile, vicious and brutal match ensued featuring bricks, baseball bats, lead pipes and more. Porter was the unlucky man thrown into the back of the Ambulance by the winner, Darius.
El Volando became the new Andele Heavyweight Champion in a family affair that confused most. Phineas Yi made an appearance to the confusion of even more and won the 2019 Rodeo Championship. Xplode was the next EWC Legend to make an appearance at the big event, hyping the crowd up in a way that only he can. After that, it was time for the International Championship match. Would the Titaness live up to her claims and knock off Cyrus? She very nearly pulled it off but in the end it was Cyrus hitting the blackout for the one, two, three.
EWC’s impressive newcomer Bosa was next up in action, taking on Brooklyn Basher. The rookie phenom impressed audiences with a big victory using his samoan death drop. Ace King’s wrestling school the King’s Court did get to show off their skills at the event, however that was interrupted by a disgusting display by Scorpio as they squared up before their hotly anticipated match for the United States Championship. After an unforgettable concert by the amazing Madonna it was time for our first day’s Main Event. Lunch Time challenged America’s Most Hated for the EWC Tag-Team Championships. Lunch Time had been serving up delicious meals all day for the French crowd, but in the end they came up just short with Melody Malone and Iggy Swango serving up a hard fought title defense.
Several superstars such as Ace King, Rafe White and Tommy Love made their voices heard as the day began on Saturday. But everyone was certainly talking about our opening contest, a tag-team match for bragging rights. On one side, for Brawl and Rampage, Justin Paird and Phoenix Winterborn. The other side belonged to FSW and PRIME, represented by Ezio DeLuca and El Pablo. Neither team wanted to let their GM and their brand down with all the eyes upon them but the smaller brands were hungrier on this day, with DeLuca earning a pinfall victory for his team.
Chuck Gacy made his violent intentions known for the X-Division and EWC Legends The Limit made a big appearance while Tanja Devereux feuded with NEVAEH in a Twitter war before they stepped inside the squared circle. And a war this singles match was, with Tanja ending up being taken down with the Fall From Grace as Prime Superstar NEVAEH picked up an afternoon victory.
Catalie Portman made a legendary appearance that I cannot put into words. An awe inspiring moment that will go down in EWC History, no doubts about it. Prime’s secondary title the EWC Television Championship had the dubious honour of trying to follow her as Jonty Kelly challenged new Champion Faith Rivers. In what some people may have considered an upset, there was a new champion as Kelly hit the Brooklyn Destroyer to achieve his Championship dreams in EWC. Rivers made it known she isn’t done with Jonty however.
Clay Byrd and Morgan Darkwater were next up, an exciting bout between two talented superstars. Darkwater looked like he had the upper hand on many occasions throughout the match but in the end Byrd made a statement, picking up the W. After hearing from the Queen Melody Malone, Eminem performed to the crowd to a standing ovation.
It was then on to the main event of the evening. Stephanie Matsuda defending her X-Division Championship against the red hot Xavier Reid. It would be a Weapon X Match for the title, and both superstars took each other to the limit. A gruesome match ensued on the scaffolding using chains and staples and even a paintball gun. In the end, The X-Division got a new Champion as Reid was able to take the victory.
Earlier on in the day we heard from Clara Monroe and the team of Richard Garcia and Lavender to start off day three. We opened up with a tag team match, Damage Inc. took on S.T from the Shieldmaidens. The two teams tore each other apart, but it was Damage Inc starting off Sunday in the win column.
Antoni Malletoa made his triumphant return to the EWC next, before a big singles match between Voshon Jackson and Alex Carbajal. Both superstars were looking to make a statement and gain future momentum, and it was “The Bullet” Carbajal who ended up taking the win. A moment followed that is certain to be a fan favourite for years, as Ace King and El Pablo reminisced about their days as XTC and were joined by EWC Hall of Famer Ruthann Hunter.
Brand supremacy was on the line again as Prime faced off against Brawl in a Wargames match. David Gibson, David Bugle, Azumi Goto and Kendrick Kross represented the red brand while Silver Ann Gold, Alexander Daemon, Stalker and Quinn Collins joined together for the blue team. In a hellacious encounter it was against all odds that Team Prime pulled out the win against the flagship show with Gold forcing Azumi to tap out in the middle of the ring.
Jordan Sharpe’s niece Saidie made her EWC debut against a local competitor following that, as well as Scorpio and Ace King continued to torment one another before their championship encounter later on. Speaking of Championship encounters, it was now the North American Championship up for grabs as Wes Walker took on the Champion Kyle Gautier. Gautier seemed to be the favourite as well, but a kick to the head ended up being his downfall and Wes Walker was crowned the new champion.
Tommy Love, Jordan Sharpe and Nevaeh made their presence known Sunday evening among others before the main event. The EWC United States Championship is on the line. Ace King defending his legendary, historic 777 day title reign against Scorpio. The bad blood between The Gambler and The S Factor reached its boiling point at WrestleFest and in one of the greatest matches EWC has ever witnessed Scorpio became the new champion, two falls to one, in what many called the most shocking moment of the entire year. Certainly King had nothing to be ashamed of after the longest title reign in EWC History.
Monday, the final day of the festival, was to be the absolute best line-up yet. First up was The Drake Memorial Cup. Four superstars fighting to claim the trophy honoring one of EWC’s heroes, the late Ashton Drake. A very important match-up to many fans and superstars alike, this fatal fourway match featured Mercenary, Gabi Vee, Samantha Hamilton and Dominic Sanders. Mercenary was the one that fell to a Riptide, and Dominic Sanders was left with the victory. President Mac then gave a very emotional presentation about the fallen superstar and thanked the fans.
After a message from EWC Legend Luke Wolfe, it was time for a tag team match featuring Lavender & Richard Garcia Vs. The returning NSFW. Some shady tactics ended up being the key to victory by disqualification for NSFW. Ace King made an impassioned speech to the EWC Fans, heartbroken after his devastating loss. The crowd gave him a standing ovation as he promised that we haven’t seen the last of him yet.
Next on the docket was Prime’s Indy Championship, Jordan Sharpe defending against Killjoy Ito in the next chapter of their rivalry, this time in a ladder match. Sharpe was able to overcome Ito and also Tommy Love’s interference to retain his title. There was no time for the audience to rest, however, because immediately following that the FSW Championship was up for grabs, with Stitches defending against Candy. These two have had many storied battles over the years in Prime, and this contest was no different. Candy was unable to topple the clown, however, as Stitches scored a pinfall victory and remained Champion. President Mac addressed the crowd one more time before our final match, the main event of the entire festival, Cyrus Black vs. Melody Malone. EWC Undisputed Championship.
The tale of this main event match is like none other. Cyrus, not only the EWC Undisputed Champion after winning the Insanity Cage at Night of Champions, but the International Champion as well. Malone, not only one half of the tag-team Champions, but winner of the Rumble match in Texas as well. And to complicate matters even more, the two are lovers.
Black hesitated at first to even wrestle with Malone, but after her ‘spirited’ urging, this match got underway and you would think there was no love lost between the two of them. After several nearfalls and Black ending up through the announce table, it seemed like these two would never be able to put one another away. Both superstars utilized their finishing moves, and a second blackout was almost able to win the match for Black if not for a well timed rope break. However, it was soon Off With the Champion’s head as Malone made the cover and became the NEW EWC Undisputed Champion. An exclamation point on one of the most talked about and revered weekends not only in EWC History, but professional wrestling itself.
ELITE FIFTEEN RECAP
By Oliver Sheen
We have made it a good bit into the new season, and you know what time it is. The first Elite Fifteen has come out and Oliver Sheen is here to break it down for everyone at home. Now, I have to say that it’s not the most surprising list, but that’s what we call consistency. That said, there are some new names which tells the story of our season—New Blood.
Starting off our list is Candy, the former Undisputed Champion, who started off the season with a loss to Wes Walker in the season premiere of FSW. That said, she hadn’t been slacking. In fact, she strung together two wins heading into Stranglemania over Killjoy Ito and Mercenary. Killjoy Ito had been riding momentum since defeating Stitches and Mercenary had been building him since becoming the #1 Contender to the FSW title. So, Candy has put herself in the talks for the championship. Personally, I saw her a bit higher at first, but after analyzing the list thoroughly, I get why she’s here. That said, never count Candy out, she might shock you.
The Samoan Warrior is one of the many injections of fresh life into the company. The rookie has taken Brawl by storm, serving as the premiere new star on their roster. And he hasn’t disappointed. He has garnered himself a few wins, but only found himself this low after failing to put him into the International Championship picture. It’s not to fault him, however. Bosa’s ceiling is higher than anyone thinks. He’ll keep pushing and if you listen to the crowds, you can tell that they’re already behind him.
The big man has finally put himself in line for the FSW Championship. After getting through some tough matches, including a multi-person match and a very game Joseph Hall. A loss to Candy doesn’t look too bad on paper, but it could be considered a small roadblock in momentum. I can see him climbing this list if he knocks off Stitches. That’s a tough task, though. Many people believe that SZN 21 will be the Year of the Clown. Not if Merc has anything to say on it.
#12: SAMANTHA HAMILTON
The poster child of the Shieldmaidens has been working hard since the season started. She has been on a pendulum of momentum since the season started. She gave herself a chance in the battle royale to become the #1 Contender for the US Championship, but she lost to Nezumi Hazama, in the Ladder Match. She lost to NSFW and in the Triple Threat for the International Championship contendership. Many people would sooner chronicle her failures, but the Titaness has made good on many things. For instance, she got a key win over the X-Division Champion in a MOTN. Furthermore, I can say that these are trials for her to overcome as she’s being presented to the top of EWC’s echelon.
If Bosa’s the rookie star of Brawl, then Darlene is that of FSW. She may have lost the chance to go for the FSW Championship, but she made good on putting herself against one of the most underrated competitors in EWC in Wes Walker. She’s hungry and vicious like a wolverine, and she’s posing to take the entire company by storm. Stranglemania will be her first major test, and I look forward to seeing what she does.
#10: KILLJOY ITO
Now we’re breaking into our top ten. The Prime’s Ace started off the season by beating Stitches and getting an MVP and a MOTN off it. Then he defeated El Pablo before making the decision to become a full-time FSW star. Buddy Love is something else entirely because he’s helping the eternally talented man into a household name. I’m waiting to see what he does. He may leave Prime on a sour note, dropping a match to Dominic Sanders, but he’s already making moves to ensure that his “Ace” status only changes colors.
#9: CLAY BYRD
Clay Byrd is finally hitting a stride. Losing in the season opener may have hurt him a bit, but he bounced back. He took down a game Bosa and Samantha Hamilton in order to punch his ticket to Stranglemania. He took down Iggy Swango. But the most important thing he has done since becoming the contender? Well, he got his vengeance for the season opener by putting down Ace King. If that’s not momentum, I don’t know what is. He walks into Stranglemania, hungry and poised to make his mark in the company.
#8: NEZUMI HAZAMA
In this analogy that I’ve been pushing, Bosa is Brawl’s biggest new star and Darlene’s FSW’s. However, Rampage has Nezumi Hazama, who is the highest ranked rookie on the list. He’s the rookie of the month and he’s showing everyone just how hungry he is. After making the switch from FSW to the Green Brand, he has been on a tear. Brazen as they come, the Rat King will look to see if he can challenge against Scorpio’s mighty SZN 21 run so far at Stranglemania.
#7: DOMINIC SANDERS
The current number one contender for the Indy Championship, Dominic Sanders has been doing what he always does. Winning and making sure everyone knows it. Killjoy Ito, Jordan Sharpe, Alexander Daemon, El Pablo, all of them have fallen to Dominic Sanders and his dubious methods. No matter how he does, he has been winning and now he has his sights on the Indy Championship. All it takes is for him to continue being the brick wall that he has been for Prime. Not if Jordan Sharpe has anything to do with it.
#6: ACE KING
Ace King, the most dominant champion in EWC history, has been in an odd place. Winning? Oh, he’s still doing that. Getting MVPs and MOTNs? Yeah. But he’s still trying to completely cope with not having the US Championship anymore. That hasn’t stopped his performance except losing to Clay Byrd. But what we’re seeing is either an evolution or a regression in the Gambler. That said, he has defeated Xavier Reid and now we’ll see if Ace will go back to his gold-winning ways at Stranglemania.
#5: GABRIELLE VISCONTY
It wasn’t until very recently that Gabi Vee was on the Stranglemania card. She’s the only person this season that has put a stain on Scorpio’s record. He beat Stephanie Matsuda. Something has changed in Gabi Vee and it’s working. She’s the epitome of consistency here. I’m excited to see what comes next for her as time goes along in this season. Though, it’s extremely odd that she didn’t get put on the main card of Stranglemania.
The newly crowned Television Champion. Lavender came out of the gate swinging and provided us with the first title change of the new season. That was enough to skyrocket her up to the top four of the Elite Fifteen. She has her first test against Faith Rivers at Stranglemania. She may no longer be the bridesmaid, but she must work to continue being the bride.
The number one contenders to the Tag Team Championships have been the talk of the company for better or worse reasons. Regardless of what you think of them, they are the team to beat in EWC right now. They’ve proven that in presentation and success. What’s even worse is that their motivations are so concrete in their minds that they’re willing to do anything to win. They have truly blossomed into a terror and they’re rightfully holding onto the #3 position.
I can only imagine that the separation between 1 and 2 was millimeters. Scorpio has taken the whole EWC by storm. Riding high off the momentum of knocking off Ace King and ending 777, he went on to defeat Xavier Reid. Was that enough? He then went on to defeat Melody Malone. Finally, how does he cap off his campaign for the Undisputed Championship shot? He defeated Clay Byrd. Scorpio is on fire right now. He has a tall task of double duty at Stranglemania, but if he walks out with both belts? Well, he may have already put his ballot in for Wrestler of the Year.
#1: MELODY MALONE
Our Undisputed Champion sits on top of the list. That championship she carries came off an amazing main event match at WrestleFest. For SZN 21? She put herself in the sights of Scorpio after failing to defeat him. But since then? She has been back on her successful route. She’s another star that will have to go through double duty at Stranglemania, but she has proclaimed to the world that she will try to break the legendary 393 day reign of Jaden “Xplode” Hunter.
The Elite Fifteen is always an interesting way to gauge who is the most successful star we have in the EWC. The first one of the new season always serves as a benchmark for what people have to look forward to. With Stranglemania coming up, we may see the whole foundation of the company change in a single night. I, for one, am looking forward to what happens. I’ll see you all there.
BY THE NUMBERS
INTERVIEW WITH CHRIS BROCK
By Oliver Sheen
@oliver_sheen: Greetings, EWC Nation. I'm Oliver Sheen and today, I'll be conducting an interview via Discord with our FSW GM, Chris Brock.
Thanks for taking the time and effort to speak with me.
So, my first question is what are your first thoughts with any news and/or events that have happened in the orange brand thus far? Did anything in particular really take you aback? Impress you? Something else altogether?
FSW : Oh wow... What a loaded question (haha). This season has been such a rollercoaster from start to finish. Our roster has exploded and we have so many new faces, along with a lot of familiar ones. I think the most shocking thing that has happened this season so far was getting that call from Buddy Love about Killjoy Ito wanting to come to FSW. Much like Candy last season, the top star on Prime decided it was time to swim in bigger waters and I welcome that with open arms. Also, I have to say the emergence of new hitters like Darlene, Joseph Hall, L.A. Meyers, and Aidan O'Sheahan have all been impressive.
@oliver_sheen: With what you've seen from your roster thus far and Stranglemania quickly approaching, do you think either the North American or FSW Championships will change hands?
FSW : I mean... yea, that's always a possibility. Wes and Stitches are obviously deserving champions. They put on one hell of a match at FSW #94. Stitches has proven that he will do whatever it takes to keep that title, but he's not unbeatable. Robbie Rayder proved that last year at FSW Uprising. Mercenary has come into this season setting the World on fire and there is a real chance that he could have Stitches number the same way he did in 2018 when he defeated him. Wes Walker defeated Kyle Gautier at WrestleFest to cap off a very strong rookie season, but another rookie has come in and really taken FSW by storm this year as well and that is Darlene. I hope Wes and Stitches are both preparing for these matches because their challengers could both pull off upsets. But that's the great thing about this sport. Anything can happen.
@oliver_sheen: Anything can indeed happen. Now that your roster has expanded, is there a dream match within FSW that you hope to see happen before the year ends?
FSW : Oh wow... I mean, I think we've already gotten some of that. My immediate goal when I took this job last season was to stabilize FSW. I had seen the roster just look dejected and depressed so I wanted to turn that around and in short order I had to put together a brand exclusive Pay-Per-View which people reacted well to, so I would like to think I did well to provide a good environment for my roster. Going into this season, I realized we had never had a meeting of the North American Champion and FSW champion, so that was one that I made happen already. I think any time Candy and Killjoy go toe to toe, it's a dream match. Killjoy and Robbie Rayder tore the house down... As for current dream matches? I think Stitches and Darlene both have that killer instinct that could either be so entertaining to watch or it would end in a blood bath. Joseph Hall and Killjoy Ito I think could be an absolute barn burner. That's just two, but I could probably spend all day coming up with new scenarios (haha)
@oliver_sheen: If you don’t mind, allow me to backtrack for a bit. Since you hinted this position is relatively new for you, what made you accept this position? Mind giving us a bit of background about yourself?
FSW : Absolutely. I'll start with what led me to this spot first. So last year was a bit of a year for EWC as a whole. The biggest thing being that our Fearless leader, President Mac, was in a very bad accident. Near fatal is the term that was being thrown around I believe. In his stead, the board of directors appointed Victor Price acting President. So Price is charged with finding a new FSW GM, and then shortly there after the old Brawl GM leaves as well. So 50% of the company now does not have a General Manager. Now, I've been retired from active competition for some time at this point, but this business... it.... It never leaves you, so of course I am always watching. Anyway, my agent starts calling me out of nowhere, telling me that I am getting calls. That made me laugh, HARD. Nothing for 5 years and then all of a sudden my agent is like a shark in the water sniffing blood it was hilarious. Anyway, he tells me EWC is calling and that I should take the meeting. I remember asking him at the time "Please tell me they aren't trying to sign me to wrestle again" and his response was "I have no idea, but you don't turn down the EWC." This is THE fed, that is very clear. So I take the meeting and Mac walks in, this was before his accident. and lays it out for me "We need a General Manager. You've done the job for other feds, you've run your own company before. You know this, so just say yes and we can all move on with our day" It was unlike any other business meeting I've ever attended. There was not strategy talk, no "tell me your vision" crap, none of that. He knew before he ever called I could do the job so he just put it out there. So at first I actually turned him down. He looked at me and just told me to go to a live show. gave me tickets to FSW #80. I turned those down as well. But I made sure I tuned in to watch. I picked up the phone halfway through the show and talked to Mac again, gave him my thoughts on how to get the show back on track and what to look for in a GM. He again offered me the job, but I turned him down again. He left the door open though because he really wanted me. Then his accident happened. It got me thinking. Life is so short, you never know what is going to happen. I decided I was going to go see a show before I really made a final decision. So I went to Paris, France and they let me backstage. What I saw there made me so sad. The entire roster was so down. The show was being terrorized from within. Before I even walked to my seat, I picked up the phone and called Victor Price. He laughed in my face, told me the job wasn't open, but I knew that was a lie. Luckily Mac had already drawn up the paperwork so it was a done deal as soon as I said yes. The rest.... well the rest played out on FSW #81 in Paris.
As for my background? Well, like I said I was a wrestler. I put 20 years into this business as a competitor. Won a couple titles, got my ass kicked... like a LOT. I had ups and downs like anyone, but my passion for this business never wavered. At a certain point, I decided that It was time to hang up the boots and let the younger men and women do what they do best. I took a year or two off at first, and then I got a call from this guy named Caleb Hawk. he was starting a new promotion called Legacy Pro Wrestling and needed someone to run the day to day side of things. So I decided to give it a try. I found out I loved it. like REALLY loved it.
At a certain point though, Caleb ran the company into the ground and for a bit I tried to run it myself but the name was just so tainted by that point, that I had to scramble to get some investors together so that I could buy Hawk out and purchase the assets of LPW so I could form a new company, DCW: Dynasty Championship Wrestling. We started small and started getting a name for ourselves, even had a Pay-Per-View or two and then the owner of APW called me with a buyout offer. I'm not a bad businessman, I know a good deal when I see one. So I took that offer. DCW merged into APW and the rest is as they say History.
@oliver_sheen: Thank you for telling us your personal story. Like you said earlier, your goal last year was to stabilize FSW. Do you have different goals for the orange brand this season, and if so, what are they?
FSW : This job we do as General Managers...it’s not unlike being an active wrestler. We’re all competing constantly. As I did more and more research into the history of the FSW brand you know what I discovered? FSW has never once been named brand of the year. Not once. Don’t get me wrong, Prime, Brawl, and Rampage all have deserved their nods. But this year. I want it. Orange is the new Red is my motto for SZN 21 and at the end of the year I want to be the GM of the Brand of the year because FSW has the talent and the staff in place to make that happen.
@oliver_sheen: That’s quite the ambitious goal. I wish you luck in that endeavor. I have one last question, so here it is. If you could ask anyone from the other brands - particularly Brawl or Rampage since Prime has crossed over to FSW every now and again - to have a one-off match with any of your roster members, who would it be? And in what kind of match?
FSW : Oh man. Well, we kind of had that happen on FSW #094 with NSFW taking on Lunch Time and earlier this year when Xavier Reid came back to FSW. But there’s one match...ONE match that I think anyone who has followed FSW will tell you they want to see: FSW champion Stitches Vs. Undisputed champion and FSW alumni Melody Malone one more time. Those two TORE UP last season and every time they stepped in the ring together it was magical. Title for title FSW champion vs Undisputed champion. As for a stipulation? I’d have to think more on that but it would have to involve weapons somehow as they both are fond of them. Can you imagine that Oliver? Man my skin has goosebumps just thinking about it!
@oliver_sheen: And that wraps up our interview for now. Thanks again for your time, and I wish you the best of luck for the rest of this season.
By Patricia Wolfe
@patricia Wolfe: Welcome EWC Nation to the Wolfe Report! This month I have the privilege of interviewing the most dominant woman in all of professional wrestling currently, and the "Queen" of the EWC, Undisputed champion Melody Malone. Melody thank you so much for taking the time to sit down and talk with me a bit today.
Melody Malone : Absolutely, thank you for having me. I haven't actually gotten a sit down with anybody during my time here, so this'll be interesting.
@wolfe: So I want to start off with a simple question: Has it set in yet for you? You are the Undisputed Champion of the largest wrestling company on the planet. Has that set in yet, and if so when did it happen? Take the readers through your thoughts in that moment if you could please.
Melody Malone : You know, it really didn't set in at Wrestlefest that it actually happened. There was a lot going on, there were a lot of emotions that everybody saw kind of come out.. I don't think I really grasped the gravity of 'I'm the Undisputed Champion' until the EWC Honors show, where I talked to a lot of great people and I got a lot of... unsolicited advice from people. I think that was ultimately when it began to sink in, you know? You're getting attention from people who might otherwise not even give you a second look, but suddenly you're worth watching.
@wolfe:: Absolutely. I bet that was an...interesting night. EWC Honors saw you take home Rookie of the year AND Female wrestler of the year though. That was another big night to cap off an absolutely amazing rookie season in EWC. Tell us, are you approaching this season any differently than your rookie season?
Melody Malone : Not really, no. I mean, I started last season with an FSW title shot in my back pocket so from day one of the 2019 season, I had my eyes on the prize. The only real difference this year, is I'm coming in with so much more experience and so much more perspective than I did last year. Last year, things kind of seemed really laissez-faire and I just kind of let whatever happen, happen and saw where the universe wanted to take me. This year, there's a lot more introspection going on, a lot more self-preservation, which you kind of have to adopt when you're on the top of the mountain.
@wolfe: Top of the mountain indeed. You are not only the Undisputed Champion but also one half of the EWC Tag Team Champions with your partner and fellow America's Most Hated member Iggy Swago as the Foxy Ladies of Dream Sound Revolution II. Tell us a little about how that team came together and how you were able to form that chemistry so quickly with Iggy?
Melody Malone : That's an awfully loaded question. Iggy and I, it's weird. We came together overnight after the ah... sudden departure of my former tag team partner. We'd already secured the contendership for the tag team titles, and suddenly? I had nobody to tag with. Iggy was on deck to challenge for the International championship in her own right, and truthfully? She wasn't a big fan of my former partner to begin with, so when he left the spot open we decided to see what we could do together. We both figured, worst case scenario, we just wouldn't gel together but we'd at least put up a fighting chance against ReBelle at the Rumble in Texas. We wound up really kind of being the yin to each other's yang. It was crazy how we meshed so well together, I don't think either of us expected it but we love it. I think we compliment each other in the ring really well just because we're so different and we cover each other's weaknesses with our own strengths, and we're not really intimated by each other's strengths either, which I think is the really big part of our success.
@wolfe: Certainly worked out well in your favor!... Speaking of ReBelle. You face one half of ReBelle and the man that beat Ace King to end his record setting United States title reign, Scorpio, at StrangleMania. This will be your first defense of the Undisputed title. It's kind of apropos that it's come full circle here, isn't it?
Melody Malone : There's some symmetry for sure, you know. Scorpio and I have a long history and Stranglemania is the only place I could imagine the two of us squaring off. My goal is that I can come out of it without the same outcome as last year, but Hell in a Cell sounds infinitely easier to endure than the Wondercrush last year. I thought I'd closed the chapter on Scorpio at Youngblood, but some books just don't end and he and I might be one of those books that transcends the EWC entirely.
@wolfe: Great answer. We all certainly have enjoyed anytime you two have been in the ring together... Your night at StrangleMania isn't just the Main Event though. You are also set to face off against arguably the greatest tag team to ever step foot in an EWC ring in NSFW. How are the Foxy Ladies preparing for that match?
Melody Malone : Uh.. carefully. She and I have been successful as a team and we're grateful for one another, but she and I both are cognizant of the fact that NSFW has been eyes on the prize, gunning for us ever since they came back and jumped us, me, on Brawl back in October. She and I have both been occupied with the International championship, the Undisputed championship, and our focus hasn't really been on the tag team championships. They're coming in laser focused on us and the Tag Team championships, and at Stranglemania we're both in for a double header, so right now we're doing our best to try and see where we can strike the fastest, the most efficiently, and leave enough of ourselves for our obligations later in the night.
Melody Malone : I wouldn't say that it isn't important to us, I mean on the contrary we've fought hard in every match we've been in to make sure that we don't embarrass ourselves or the championships, and I can't speak for Iggy directly but I mean... answer me honestly. If you were holding the Undisputed championship, with the likes of Scorpio breathing down your neck, or staring down the consequences of having to put someone you care about deeply at risk across the ring from you, is your focus going to be on the tag team championships? Between that and Iggy's history with alcohol and her suspension at the end of 2019 - All things considered, the fact that Iggy and I have not only maintained the tag team championships through Wrestlefest but have still managed to lose only one tag team match together since we formed, I'd say is remarkably impressive given the duress we've both been under throughout our reign as tag team champions. It's going to take the kind of laser focus that NSFW is bringing to Stranglemania to be able to dethrone a team so cohesive that suspensions, other championships, and personal crisis' couldn't dethrone.
@wolfe: So the other thing that I wanted to focus on was your statement about leaving something left to fight your other fights. That is a huge concern of course anytime you are pulling double duty. It worked out in your favor at WrestleFest. Have you upped your stamina training heading into StrangleMania?
.Melody Malone : I've had to. Wrestlefest gave me the unique opportunity to take two full days between defending the tag team championships, and competing for the Undisputed championship. I might get two hours, if I'm lucky, going into Stranglemania. Everything is going to be a matter of working smarter, not harder, when I get into the ring at Stranglemania. In all honesty though, I think I'm more prepared for that than I was Wrestlefest. The adrenaline, the energy, that's the kind of thing that will keep me going as I get ready for that main event. I worked for too long, and too hard, to let the Undisputed championship slip through my fingers, and Scorpio isn't in for an easier night himself, so we're going to be on an even playing field, even if its a very exhausted field
@wolfe: Wow we've covered a lot so far today. I have one final question for you champ: Cyrus Black. He's been suspended and stripped of the International championship. No one has heard from him. Can you give us any update on his injury or a timeline for his return?
Melody Malone : I won't give out any personal details, suffice to say that I care very deeply for Cyrus and when he's ready to speak on his own behalf, then the entirety of EWC will be the first to hear it. He was very insistent to not share the details of his injury with me prior to his suspension, so I can't venture any guesses as far as a timeline or update. All I know, is he has my support throughout this period and I can't wait to get back to cheering him on backstage.
@wolfe: Fair enough. Melody thank you so much for your time. The EWC Nation looks forward to you competing at StrangleMania at the end of the month. Best of luck to you.
Melody Malone : Thank you, I look forward to the next interview when I break Xplode's title reign.
By Patricia Wolfe
Greetings EWC Nation. I'm Patricia Wolfe and will gladly talk about EWC's arguably biggest pay-per-view event that is rapidly approaching! That's right, Stranglemania XV is less than two weeks away! This year, we will be hosting Stranglemania in Los Angeles, California. Suffice to say, the card looks absolutely stacked! Even the dark matches have fights which look promising in their own rights!
In fact, let's start with the first Dark Match. We have a 15 Person Battle Royale! Interestingly enough, none of the newcomers will represent the green brand, Rampage. Everyone is split between the other three brands somehow.
This will, no doubt, be a huge opportunity for those making their debut in this massive PPV, but also a way to see about representing one's brand and earning huge bragging rights.
Who will win?
I have absolutely no idea. Nor am I even going to try to guess. But I will offer the best of luck to everybody in this large set-up.
Next, we will have a Cage Match between Stalker and Alexander Daemon. These two have been having quite the history during their time in Prime, and it seems we will finally witness these two unleash their wrath and frustrations upon one another.
The third Dark Match will be a Fatal Four Way between, arguably, some of the biggest names in each brand. We will see Gabrielle Visconty from Brawl, Samantha "The Titaness" Hamilton from Rampage, Killjoy Ito who used to be in Prime, but is now in FSW, and Ezio DeLuca from FSW.
All four fighters no doubt have something huge to prove. I'm curious and excited to see who emerges as the winner in this fight. X-Division Rules may not be applied here, but expect to see some impressive techniques and moves here, particularly with at least two of the superstars being willing and able to fight in the more brutal matches like X-Division ones.
In our last Dark Match, we will see Bosa go against Joseph Hall. It'll be a battle between two relatively new members of Brawl and FSW respectively, whom have been accomplishing a lot for their brands as of late.
With the last of the Dark Matches being talked about, we now go onto the main card. The first of the main fights will be for the United States Championship, with NEZUMI taking Scorpio on. He announced at the most recent episode of Rampage he wanted to make the match poetic, hence making this a Two Out Of Three Falls fray.
But will that decision work in NEZUMI's favor? Or will it come back to haunt him?
No matter what the outcome, it's very safe to say with the streak and momentum he's been having lately that Scorpio will not make it simple for even the talented NEZUMI to dethrone him.
We'll then see NSFW take on DSR Volume II. Or, for those who don't know the abbreviation, NSFW will face the team of Iggy Swango and Melody Malone, two members of America's Most Hated, but with a few twists! Ezio DeLuca will be the guest referee, and Chuck Gacy will be the guest timekeeper!
Considering the history that Ezio has had with NSFW and Chuck, it will be very interesting to see how this match pans out.
We'll then see Aidan O'Sheahan take on L.A. Meyes in a ... Pub Crawl Brawl?
I don't believe we've had that type of match ever. Definitely not in a while, if we have. The match type in itself will make witnessing this fight just as intriguing as the two FSW stars being put toe-to-toe with each other.
Next, there will be yet another Fatal Four Way ... but this one is strictly between four Brawl Superstars! More than that, it's also a Falls Count Anywhere Match! We'll see Kendrick Kross, William Manson, Mike Strong, and Jeb Jackson all go against one another. Each male Brawl wrestlers has had their share of highs and impressive feats as of late.
Still with me? Good, because there's still a lot of matches to go.
The next Championship on the line will be for the EWC Television Championship, with the recently dethroned Faith Rivers getting a chance to reclaim the strap she used to hold. Her opponent? None other than Lavender, whom has been on her own roll in Prime so far.
With pinfalls being the only way to win, both ladies are going to have to hit hard and make each attack really count. A single mistake could cost either of them the match.
Next up will be a Last Person Standing match between another two fighters who have had their share of history and bad blood lately; Iggy Swango and Phoenix Winterborn. Their feud seems to have only gotten stronger as the days have gone on. These two are going to go at one another with everything they've got.
Who will be the person that ends up not being able to remain standing?
Only one way to find out, folks! Tune in on March 30th!
The North American Championship will be on the line in a Spin the Wheel, Make the Deal Match. It ... sounds almost like a game show sorta gimmick. This is another match type I've never heard of, but am very curious and excited to see. Darlene, one of the newest members of FSW, has shown absolutely impressive displays of strength during her short time in the orange brand.
Wes Walker is, no doubt, going to be in one of the toughest fights of his life.
Next, we will witness what could arguably be the most controversial bout of the night as Clay Byrd faces Darius in a Bull Rope Match for the EWC International Championship!
For those who don't know, Cyrus Black - the original Champion - was suspended indefinitely after we learned he had sustained a major injury at WrestleFest. Exact details are unknown. But Jim Connors had to make the unfortunate, yet fair, decision to strip him of his title to ensure a fight for the International Championship could happen.
At Brawl #552, Connors further surprised everyone by declaring the match between Gabrielle Visconty versus Darius would be to determine the second person to fight in Stranglemania for the International Title.
Obviously, Darius won that evening. But with this being a very personal goal of Clay's, how will he fight, especially knowing he won't be able to face the very man he originally wanted to fight for the title?
I honestly think this has potential to steal the entire show away. It'll definitely be something very, very intense and equally special.
Finally, Ace King will have a shot at a title! It won't be for the United States Championship, but that won't stop him from holding back against his toughest rival, Xavier Reid, for the X-Division Championship.
The Gambler has been absolutely famished, and he has been making this very easy to notice. While many have tried to use his loss to Scorpio against him, he's only been showing that despite now being the hunter rather than the hunted, he won't go easy while eagerly aiming to hold gold once more.
But at what cost is he willing to achieve his goal? We'll find out, because this isn't any mere X-Division Rules fight we'll witness. We'll see a second round of Rage In The Cage between these two talented men face each other once more!
Mercenary will face Stitches in a Biker Chain Match for the FSW Championship. Many have wondered if this year will be one that continues to stay in Stitches' favor, particularly after he retained the FSW Title versus Candy back in WrestleFest.
This will be an ultimate test for Mercenary, as he has the chance to prove that despite the Clown being great with psychological and physical warfare, he's got what it takes to dethrone Stitches and make this year his own.
The Indy Championship will be a Last Man Standing fight between challenger Dominic Sanders and current champion, Jordan Sharpe.
Many have tried to question Dominic's true motives for transferring to the blue brand. Yet despite the many controversial theories, he has shown that going from Brawl to Prime has not made him weaker. If anything, he seems to be stronger, and better than ever.
Jordan Sharpe is definitely going to have quite the challenge on his plate!
Last - but certainly not least - we will see Scorpio go against Melody Malone! Not only will he have the opportunity to win the Undisputed Championship, but he could earn the status of being a double champion; assuming he retains his title against NEZUMI, that is.
It hasn't been a secret that ever since he got so close to grasping the Undisputed Title at last year's Night of Champions Cage of Insanity fray, he has desperately wanted a chance to prove he has a rightful claim to this strap.
With him having declared this will be Hell In A Cell match, one has to wonder if this - much like NEZUMI's - stipulation choice will be a wise one or not. But perhaps that's exactly the point he wants to make; that even while facing EWC's Queen in a cage, he'll find a way to prevail.
With Melody Malone being one of the few other people who is also double booked, she'll have a lot on her hands also.
The stakes will be high. The fights will be very action packed. And already, even before it has arrived, Stranglemania is looking to be an evening no one will soon forget.
That's it for the hype! I hope to see some of you with us in Los Angeles for what is promised to be an even more amazing Stranglemania than last year!
By Nolan Castle
EWC Rookie Spotlight is a monthly column dedicated to newcomers to the EWC and what makes them tick. Our first feature is on Rampage's own NEZUMI.
Thank you for your time, first of all. So when did NEZUMI decide to pursue professional wrestling?
“I decided to pursue wrestling truthfully last year. When I came out for my tryout for EWC, that was when I decided to fully invest in a career. That said, I’ve been training in martial arts and wrestling for a few years--about five? I spent two years in dojos and then the next three in the ring, getting my ass kicked. The thing about Japanese wrestling, or puroresu, is that they believe too much in the fighting spirit aspect of things.”
“They’ll beat the crap out of you and tell you to get up after the fact.”
I see. Well, nothing good is ever easy so they say. So how did that road lead you to the EWC?
“I heard EWC gave a lot of money in their contracts. I asked one of my teachers about it and he said that I didn’t have a big chance. I got in touch with some people and a guy knew a guy. It wasn’t anything grandiose.”
And what do you strive for here in EWC, what are your goals? In the first year? Five years?
“Okay, I hate these questions.”
Well I'm certainly not trying to offend, here. Just doing my job.
“I don’t think anyone should measure themselves in a time span like that. The world doesn’t work that way. When you have to deal with the reality of, say, death and disease, you don’t get to think about the future too often. In my first year in EWC? I want to become Undisputed Champion. I’m already making strides by taking a few awards and a contendership of my own.”
“Rookie of the Year is my goal because I want to step over all the other members of my class.”
I see. Well those are some pretty bold claims. Not many have become Undisputed Champion in the first year. I guess that's part of the reason you switched from FSW to Rampage?
“Money and opportunity. FSW wasn’t a bad place by no stretch of the imagination. It’s just that I needed to hit the ground running. My critics will say that I did out of fear or that I’m a sellout.”
“The sellout part is true. I have no sense of brand loyalty. The only thing that I’m loyal to is myself.”
You got any EWC dream matches?
“I really wanted to face Scorpio off the gun. I got that match.”
“Darlene is another one, but it’s mostly because I want a chance to really see if she can back up what she says. I’m a miserable kind of person. The most gratifying thing in the world is watching how people have to watch me succeed.”
And what trait will lead to that success, do you think? What about NEZUMI makes him the most dangerous for his opponents?
“It’s a trade secret.”
“I’d sooner let my critics, my fans, and my co-workers decide that about me. Whatever horror stories that will be publicized in my honor will all be true. And when those dangerous traits start to stack up, I’ll let the people that dare challenge me make the judgment on what they should be most afraid of.”
“I think the universal consensus is that I’ll stop at no end to make sure I get what I want.”
“Greed is a terrific motivator.”
That it is. Before we go, NEZUMI, come up with a question I can ask the next rookie in our next spotlight interview?
“Oh, this is cute.”
“I was going to be arrogant and make you ask them something about me, but I refrained.”
“Which Muppet could you take in a fight?”
After hearing this interview, I have no doubts that NEZUMI could take down any Muppet he wanted. Catch us next month for another look at a promising EWC Rookie.
Brought to you by Under Armour, PS4 and Dr Pepper
LIVE! from the LA Memorial Coliseum
Tickets available at the venue box office, the official EWC website & toll free: 1-800-EXTREME
Ticket prices (in USD):
$120, $60, $45, $30, $25, $20, $15
Prices do not include service charges or facility fees
DARK MATCH I
INVITE ONLY | HOT SHOT DEBUT | QUAD BRAND BATTLE ROYAL
"The Fiery Target" Jake Raab
"La Belicista" Isabella
DARK MATCH II
Alexander Daemon Vs Stalker
DARK MATCH III
Killjoy Ito Vs Samantha Hamilton Vs Ezio DeLuca Vs Gabrielle Visconty
DARK MATCH IV
BRAWL V FSW
Bosa Vs Joseph Hall
INVITE ONLY | HOT SHOT DEBUT | QUAD BRAND BATTLE ROYAL
"The Fiery Target" Jake Raab
"La Belicista" Isabella
DARK MATCH II
Alexander Daemon Vs Stalker
DARK MATCH III
Killjoy Ito Vs Samantha Hamilton Vs Ezio DeLuca Vs Gabrielle Visconty
DARK MATCH IV
BRAWL V FSW
Bosa Vs Joseph Hall
EWC UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP
TWO OUT OF THREE FALLS
Nezumi Vs Scorpio
EWC TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP
EQUALIZERS AT THE READY!
NSFW Vs DSR Vol II
WITH SPECIAL GUEST REF EZIO DELUCA & SPECIAL GUEST TIME KEEPER CHUCK GACY
PUB CRAWL BRAWL
Aidan O'Sheahan Vs L.A. Meyers
FALLS COUNT ANYWHERE ... IN LOS ANGELES
Kendrick Kross Vs William Manson Vs Mike Strong Vs Jeb Jackson
EWC TELEVISION CHAMPIONSHIP
Faith Rivers Vs Lavender
LAST PERSON STANDING
Iggy Swango Vs Phoenix Winterborn
EWC / FSW NORTH AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIP
SPIN THE WHEEL, MAKE THE DEAL
Darlene Vs Wes Walker
EWC INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
BULL ROPE MATCH
Darius Vs Clay Byrd
EWC X-DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIP
RAGE IN THE CAGE II
Ace King Vs Xavier Reid
FUTURE STARS CHAMPIONSHIP
BIKER CHAIN MATCH
Mercenary Vs Stitches
LAST MAN STANDING
Dominic Sanders Vs Jordan Sharpe
EWC UNDISPUTED CHAMPIONSHIP
HELL IN A CELL
Scorpio Vs Melody Malone
© THE EXTREME WRESTLING CORPORATION 2020