NWA Predictions: The End Is Closer Than You Think

I decided to sit down tonight and write down a few thoughts on where I see the NWA going over the next couple of months. We already know that Cornette is out, David Marquez appears to be on the way out as well. Who else might be questioning their employment is anyone’s guess but the writing appears to be on the wall and it’s not good.

For starters we’re not even two months into this promotion and it’s already been embroiled in controversy. With a couple big names on the TV show leaving and several openly questioning the direction of the company it seems that cracks are appearing here nearly as fast as they did in the early 2000’s with the now long defunct World Wrestling All-Stars.

Other things that don’t add up to me, we’re three weeks away from their first pay-per-view and we’ve yet to hear a single match announced for the program. Either they are hoping people will pre-order and not care what is on the card or they are doing a pretty damn bad job at building towards their first post tv show ppv. Many people have pre-ordered, I know I did(I’ve now had that refunded), but this is not going to make up for PPV buys that would have been gained from good feud building and planning.

So with that out of the way, here are my top 5 predictions for the future of the NWA.

Prediction 1: More Exits

It will be interesting to see who is there for the second set of tapings and who is missing. To be honest we might not see all that many exits during the next set of taped episodes but I do believe they are on the way. I’ve noticed the amount of outside dates that the workers for the NWA are doing outside of the company, it seems pretty obvious the NWA isn’t a cash cow and when push comes to shove, how many of these workers will stick with the company if the stress level starts to rise? Several of the stars of the NWA today could easily use this promotion as a jumping off spot for other promotions with bigger paydays. So I expect to see some more exits within the second and third tape schedules.

Prediction 2: Programming Changes

When I first started watching NWA Powerrr I was really excited about the old school feel but to be perfectly honest it’s never been clear whether this is a promotion that wants to be taken seriously as an old-school style promotion or a promotion that wants to be seen as a parody of an old-school style promotion. This confusion may explain some of the issues that the NWA has faced with having a returning fanbase.

The first episode of NWA Powerrr has garnered nearly 560,000 views, the second 324,000, the third 227 and on downward. The last episode of Powerrr is sitting at near 70,000 views, the original episode was taken down nearly as soon as it had finished and if prior weeks are a clue it probably gathered about 10-15k views during it’s first hour. So will go with the large end and say it’s gotten 85,000 views so far, far less than any episode to date and while the NWA keeps pushing that they are happy with their numbers, that large of a drop has to be weighing on those with money on the line.

So what does this mean, at least in my opinion? Programming changes are more than likely on the way. I honestly think that we will see a shift from wrestling driven to segment driven shows within the next few months.

Prediction 3: Scramble to Figure Out Their FanBase

This first PPV after the debut of Powerrr is going to be a struggle for the company, especially with the current controversy they’ve faced. The removal of Cornette and Marquez will see a small but not insignificant portion of the audience go away. With no way to change programming until after the next set of TV tapings there are still a few episodes with the old crew in line. This could actually hurt them from both sides of the controversy. Those that wanted Cornette removed will not be happy seeing him on the next several weeks of programming, those that didn’t want him removed will see the next several weeks of programming as a sad reminder that he will soon be gone.

I would predict the next few weeks heading into the PPV will be on the low end for viewers and thus the next set of TV tapings could be a jumbled mess as the higher ups try to grasp hold of who will fill their new fanbase. I’ve yet to see a promotion, apart from the WWE, successfully make it through one of these scramble periods and end up better off in the end.

Prediction 4: NWA Becomes Just Another Indy Wrestling Show On YouTube

It’s no secret that several of the top talent in the NWA today have been through situations like this before in larger companies with far deeper pockets than the NWA. If the PPV payout is underwhelming, if the stress levels rise due to dwindling viewers and programming changes, and if any of the larger named talents walk away from the company we could see a mass exodus and in the end be left with an indy show that has less production values than other indy shows already on YouTube.

Championship Wrestling from Hollywood has better production values, they’ve been on YouTube longer and have actual TV in several markets. If the NWA underwhelms in terms of the PPV and YouTube viewership, expect them to move more towards the style of CWFH, an Impact wrestling clone, or they could try and reproduce what the WWE does with a fraction of the budget. None of these would be good for the company and the last one would be absolutely disastrous.

Prediction 5: NWA, As It Is Now, Ceases to Exist Within A Year

Billy Corgan doesn’t have the connections or business savvy of Vince McMahon, He doesn’t own the platform that his promotion appears on unlike Impact, and his pockets are empty when you compare them to the deep pools in Tony Khans pants. While he does seem to have a passion for the wrestling industry, that passion can’t force people to buy tickets, merch, or grow their viewership.

Billy is a business man, and if it begins to appear as if this promotion is going to be consistently in the red I have little doubt that he’ll cut ties and sell off the company to the next person that wants to give the NWA letters a try. A few years back Jim Cornette mentioned in a shoot interview that the professional wrestling industry was dead and sports entertainment killed it. Even though I had hopes that the NWA would lead to a resurgence of old school style professional wrestling action, my hopes are becoming slimmer and slimmer.

And so my last prediction here is that the Corgan version of the NWA is gone within the next year. It was a good try, worked well as an idea, but modern business practices and the modern environment cannot allow for an Old-School NWA to exist.

In Conclusion:

In reality we’ve been rooting for an NWA skin. This isn’t a group of promoters working together promoting across the globe, this is a singular entity working under the letters of the NWA. There isn’t a cooperation among many small parts as was the case during the territory days, this is an NWA case on a modern promotion, looking at it that way now it’s hard not to see that this company and idea was doomed to fail from the very beginning. Eventually the case wears out and you have to get a new one or else expose what’s actually there. A musician who tried to purchase one already failed promotion, lost that opportunity, and so attempted to resurrect a promotion that has been gone so long that we would grasp at any small hope it might make a comeback.

NWA: Not Watching Anymore

Earlier I wrote of the faux outrage that the higher ups at the NWA were throwing out in order to cover their own asses, for a line that they chose to leave in a show, that was recorded two months ago. Well after that was written the NWA released this on Twitter.

And with that I’m done watching. Let me be clear, I wish the company well. I hope they succeed and thrive, I hope the workers there earn more than enough to survive and thrive on but once I get the smell of bullshit in my nostrils it doesn’t go away easily. Once Again this was a single line of commentary recorded two months ago, everyone who heard that line in the editing process was fine with it until all of a sudden they pretend to be shocked that it had been made. That’s bullshit, plain and simple. This says nothing of the wrestlers or the talent that had nothing to do with the video production, but it’s a piss poor excuse of a production company that allows an employee to be tanked due to a line that could have been removed and dubbed over months ago.

Again, I do hope they succeed but my efforts will be spent elsewhere.

Written By,
Jeffrey Kinkaid

NWA Big Announcement Falls Flat In My Eyes…

NWA Logo for New Program

Today at 8am ET the NWA Announced a new program, scheduled to begin in mid September, The Circle Squared. This show will feature new talents trying out for a chance to win a contract with the National Wrestling Alliance. According to the NWA Website;

“This series will allow new talents an opportunity to put their money where their mouth is to get a chance to earn an NWA Talent contract. This competition show allows talents selected to step up to the circle of the podium to exhibit their talents on the microphone before stepping into the square of the ring to show their physical abilities in a wrestling match.”

-Billy Corgan NWA President

So from the information released today it seems to be some sort of American Idol contest for promo skills, and that’s why it fell flat for me.

First off let me point out that I’m calling this a flat announcement, meaning I don’t see it as good or bad but more or less a cup of warm but bland soup. While I’m incredibly excited to see new talents enter the NWA, and I believe that promo skills are absolutely crucial to a successful wrestling career, I don’t know that a promo contest is something that will really connect with me or the fan base that the NWA has grown so far. To me this shouldn’t have been used as a “Big Announcement” that had everyone talking, so in that respect I feel like they somewhat swerved us fans.

In truth, only time will tell whether this idea is a success or a failure on the part of the National Wrestling Alliance and the NWA President, Billy Corgan. What I can say is that this announcement didn’t persuade me to watch their current product any more or any less. I still see the NWA as the best professional wrestling program on air today and will be sticking around to see exactly what they have in store for us in the future.

Maddie McAtee

Honest Thoughts Update: To be honest, this announcement seems like something exciting for professional wrestlers and not for wrestling fans. In the past this would have been a 30 second on screen graphic letting people know the promotion was holding a tryout. Instead we’re getting what more or less amounts to a reality TV program, for a promotion that’s built around taking things back to the basics. Sadly, given a couple of hours to contemplate this announcement, I have to increase this from falling flat to a complete letdown.

Who Is That Masked Man?

The Man, the Myth, the Enigma!

One question is on the minds of everyone who watches NWA Powerrr? Who is that masked man, The Question Mark? While little is known about this enigma, one thing is certain, he is the talk of the wrestling world today! With moves and a presence that is equal to greats like Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat, Stan Lane, Harley Race, Frank Gotch, and Terry Funk, this masked man is capable of laying waste to the entire roster of the NWA.

We reached out to a fan at ringside, who wishes to remain anonymous, that had this to say;

Granny Doe

“Everything seemed fine and then a heaviness filled the air, you could have heard a pin drop, and then we saw him. When he dropped his opponent an inaudible shriek was let out by everyone in the audience. I honestly thought he had killed the lad!”

While little is still known about this masked man we are sure to be seeing more of him on NWA Powerrr, Tuesdays at 6:05ET on YouTube! Tune in and stand in awe of this amazing physical specimen.

Written by,
Jeffrey Kinkaid

Sometimes Less Is More

When the NWA announced that they were going to be starting a professional wrestling promotion on YouTube, I have to admit that I was probably one of the more skeptical people out there. What the hell does Billy Corgan know about running a wrestling promotion? What are they going to be able to bring that isn’t already fulfilled by countless other promotions out there in the world today? How on Earth will they bring prestige back to championship titles that have been tossed aside by so many promotions of the past?

NWA Into The Fire Poster

A few days ago I pre-ordered Into the Fire, the first PPV of the NWA since they started on YouTube. Not only is this their first major PPV since they redebuted but it also happens to be the very first PPV that I have ever pre-ordered. As of yet not a single match has been announced but the pre-order was a no-brainer, not because of what the NWA will do but because of what they don’t do.

For the last 20+ years professional wrestling has become so formula driven as to make watching the product completely unnecessary in order to know what occurred on the program. The first 20 minutes are given to some asinine cookie cutter promo given by one of the promotions top stars, this ends in a challenge for a match at the end of the night. Next up you’ll have a match that’s almost always meaningless which will be interrupted by one of the heels in the company, almost never does this actually lead to anything, it’s just done to get the crowd going. Another tag or singles match will follow, this one may or may not progress a feud but it will almost never end cleanly.

Once you reach the second hour you might as well turn it off and find some better use of your time because nothing happens during the second hour. It’s primarily filled with backstage segments, maybe a squash match, and hype for the next PPV.

Cookie Cutter Shaped Like Vince Russo

The third hour begins much like the first, another promo, usually given by the opposing side of the earlier promo. Once again it’s cookie cutter, so you don’t get any passion or excitement from it as it could have been given by any of the hundreds of wrestlers in the promotion. We get another filler match or two, done to make the main event seem spectacular.

Finally we reach the main event and by this time you’re just ready for it to be over but it’s generally a decent match but almost never does it end cleanly, you don’t tend to care because we’ve been trained to believe that this is how it’s always been and you only get clean finishes on PPV’s. By the end of it, if you’re like me, you look at the clock, wonder why you spent the last three hours watching a program you didn’t like, and realize work is just a few hours away.

Why was this hard to understand?

So what does the NWA do here that the other promotions don’t? Well it’s one hour of wrestling for starters. The interviews forward the stories but they’re short and to the point. Somehow the NWA fills one hour with more wrestling than other promotions put into a two or three hour program. What the NWA has done is create an entertaining wrestling program instead of an entertainment program that happens to feature some wrestling.

Secondly, I care about the people in the ring. We’re not seeing a roster of hundreds but a select group of wrestlers, much as it was in years past. From my understanding workers will come and go in the promotion on short term deals which will keep the promotion fresh while also constantly feeding new challengers to their top stars. Ricky Starks, Thunder Rosa, Nick Aldis, Tim Storm, Marti Belle, The Dawsons, each and every one of these wrestlers have been introduced to us in such a way as to make them both down to Earth but also still larger than life.

All the action, none of the bull.

Newer fans will be taken back by the lack of elaborate entrances, entrance music, and long celebration sequences with that same music blaring. However this is actually a blessing as it equates to more time for wrestling. Your average entrance sequence is between 3 and 5 minutes on TV, consider that on a three hour program you’re seeing 15-20 entrances and you realize, damn that’s a lot of watching people walk to and from the ring. Older fans will remember when the big entrances were something special, seen only at big events and I’m hoping that is the case with the NWA. Even if it’s not it’s something that I’m perfectly happy to give up in exchange for more wrestling.

Lastly, I’ve yet to see any sort of spot heavy match in the NWA. All of these workers know how to wrestle and they don’t need a triple threat burning table on a ladder match to highlight their capabilities. It’s wrestling plain and simple, which I absolutely love. If you would have told me that the key to an excellent promotion would be to strip away everything we’ve become so used to and go back to the very basics of professional wrestling, I would have called you a liar, but that’s exactly what the NWA has done.

The future is bright for the NWA!