Norko, SAW Contributor and A1 Podcast host has given some in-depth thoughts on the A1 Podcast Year End Awards for South Atlanta Wrestling. His thought are below, exclusively for SAW. There will be more to come shortly.
For those that listen to the A1 Podcast over at A1-Wrestling.com know that our annual Year End show has been posted and unfortunately for those hoping for another epic rant, there was none to be given because Cam Newton didn't do anything as noteworthy as he did last year. But this year was filled with a lot of newsworthy things, and for the faithful readers of S.A.W. you'll get to read my detailed thoughts on them here, but you should still listen to the show because of the others picks for their best of the year and it's obviously another great show, not that I'm biased as anything....;-)
-Best Wrestler of the Year- Chase Owens (NWA Smoky Mountain)
One of the things we did as a podcast this year wasdo more to show our audience that there is more to wrestling than just the WWE or TNA and there's more to independent wrestling than just ROH and Chikara. One of the ones we showcased and continue to follow is NWA Smoky Mountain, based out of the East Tennessee area. And the ace of that promotion is most definitely Chase Owens. This guy has that factor that AJ Styles had when he was coming up through NWA Wildside. When NWASM brought in Davey Richards, who did they choose to face him? Chase Owens. And when called to have a representative in the NWA World JR Heavyweight Tournament, who did they call upon? Chase Owens. And when Chikara wanted to bring in someone different to their shows from the area, they chose, you guessed it, Chase Owens. He does have some strides to make to improve, but he improved a lot as 2011 went by, and definitely improved his profile so much this past year. He's going to make some noise in 2012!
Here is his match with Davey Richards from August 4th
-Best Heel of the Year- Marion Fontaine (Pro Wrestling Ohio)
Another one that I thought outside the box for. Just simply looking at the guy, you knew he was a dick. Just a scrawny little guy, but just a mouthy little dick. I believe Zandrax said it on the podcast but he would be a great mouthpiece for someone if he were to go to a higher place, say the WWE. But he's also a great worker, knows how to play to his strengths and play to the crowd as that heel that you want to see get smacked around, but yet, week after week comes back for more with friends at times, like bringing in Brodie Lee for his Wrestlelution 4 match against Kevin Nash and Aaron Draven. For me, this dude came from literally nowhere, and he's definitely been tearing it up in the Ohio area.
Promo leading up to the match with Kevin Nash and Aaron Draven.
-Best Face of the Year- CM Punk (WWE)
Though he spent half the year as a heel as the leader of the New Nexus,CM Punk's transformation into a face reminded many of the way Stone Cold Steve Austin turned face, and ironically it happened in the same city and same venue that it happened in, which is the Rosemont Horizon in Chicago, IL. Some could argue that the end of the Money in the Bank match withhim and John Cena could be the moment of the year and it was memorable, and it led to the meteoric rise of said Mr. Punk, which despite some of the booking, he continues to show that the people do want to like Punk and believe in the Punk.
-Match of the Year- Johnny Gargano vs Josh Prohibition vs "M-Dogg" Matt Cross (PWO Wrestlelution 4, August 7th)
I had known about Cross and Prohibition going back to the Days of CZW's Cage of Death when they were on that show in 2002. I was impressed with both men being featured on the card. Going into the Wrestlution 4 match, it was told of the story of all three men, revealing that Prohibition had a big hand in the training of both men, and while he was away, he did not like how both Cross and Gargano had represented themselves in the business. Cross is coming off being elimnated from the WWE reality show Tough Enough with a point to prove and wanted to prove it by taking out Gargano, and Gargano, coming back from a previous injury, had come back to prove he is still worthy of being PWO Champion. Not only did this have a personal history, professionally, it was the story of the first three PWO Champions, the men who were in the main events of the first three Wrestlelutions. So for these three men, they lived up to the nickname of the match "Full Circle". With a lot of hype going into it, they had a lot to deliver and indeed they did, and I felt it was the best match of 2011.
The buildup to the match.
Josh Prohibition's fantastic promo leading up to the match.
Upload Credit: cwnews, PWOwrestling