The NWA is back in action. They partnered with United Wrestling Network to collaborate on the Primetime LIVE weekly PPV series. The main event of last night’s debut (Sep. 15, 2020) was Nick Aldis putting the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship on the line against Mike Bennett.
The NWA needed a challenger to make a splash and move the needle for PPV promotion. Bennett was the one who stepped up to the plate. His angle was career redemption to make up for his run in WWE. Bennett came into the bout in the best shape of his life.
Last workout before my @nwa Worlds Heavyweight Championship match. Up 20lbs since my last match. Nothing left but to let the preparation do the talking. Let’s gooooooo! #PrimeTimeLive #tenpoundsofgold @unitedwrestling pic.twitter.com/RiiJPPgOez— Mike (@RealMikeBennett) September 14, 2020
Bennett was escorted by his wife, Maria Bennett (aka Kanellis). She used the Bennett last name as a show of support. The champ entered the ring alone. Aldis was strictly business in his approach. Ding, ding, ding.
In the early-going, Bennett charged at his opponent for a spear, but Aldis sidestepped and the referee took the contact instead. Aldis immediately used that to his advantage by tombstone piledriving Bennett on the entrance ramp. Maria prevented Aldis from attacking with the title belt. Out came Kamille to scare Maria away. While that was happening, the camera missed a flying crossbody from Bennett to Aldis.
Back in the ring with a replacement referee, Bennett and Aldis exchanged heated fisticuffs. Bennett ran the ropes right into a Michinoku Driver from Aldis. Kick out. Bennett roared back with clobbering offense, but the National Treasure was one step ahead. Aldis crushed Bennett with another tombstone piledriver and a flying elbow drop. Amazingly, Bennett kicked out. He showed his heart in the biggest moment of his career by refusing to lose.
Bennett took charge with a superplex and a spear. As much as Bennett’s struggle was the story, Aldis is also a man with a family and a burning desire to be the best. Aldis dug down deep to kick out. Bennett took it up a notch with a big piledriver. He was slow on the cover, so that gave time for Aldis to get his foot on the ropes before the count of three.
At that point, Maria handed the title belt to Bennett with dastardly intentions. Bennett thought twice about throwing the opportunity away via disqualification and dumped the belt. That delay allowed Aldis time to recover. Aldis caught a flying Bennett to hook in a cloverleaf submission. Aldis sat down deep. Each time Bennett got near the ropes, Aldis dragged him back to the center of the ring. Bennett passed out from the pain, and the referee called for the bell. Aldis retained the Ten Pounds of Gold. His reign currently stands at 694 days and counting.
The main event clocked in at under ten minutes, but it was a banger for that short period of time. There were a lot of shenanigans crammed in with the referee bump, the tombstone on the stage, the interaction from Maria and Kamille, and trying to emphasize Bennett’s personal story. It was obvious that this bout was supposed to be given more time but had to be cut short due to scheduling constraints. As a sprint, the match was high quality. I believe it had potential to be epic if given the right amount of time for all the elements to play out.
The dramatic ending was successful in revamping Bennett’s image from Mr. Kanellis. He showed he can compete with the best. After the match, the two men shared a handshake of respect. Backstage, Bennett was distraught about his defeat.
As for the rest of the broadcast, there seemed to be streaming glitches for many viewers and the show ran long, prior to the main event, forcing Aldis and Bennett to rush.
All I can say regarding the issues with the ppv tonight is @nwa fans deserve better, and you will get it. Also we busted our asses in what time we had to deliver a main event and Mike Bennett is a quality professional and he deserves your respect.— Nick Aldis (@RealNickAldis) September 16, 2020
The card was a mix of indie promotions. The only other match relating to the NWA was Kamille defeating Heather Monroe via spear.
Next week’s main event for Primetime LIVE will see Thunder Rosa defend the NWA World Women’s Championship against Priscilla Kelly.
BREAKING NEWS— United Wrestling Network (@unitedwrestling) September 12, 2020
We released the final card for our premiere episode of #PrimeTimeLive earlier today. But we’ve got one more announcement:
The main event for our 2nd episode on Tue, Sept. 22, will be for the @nwa Women’s Championship:
⚡️@thunderrosa22 v @priscillakelly_ pic.twitter.com/REQKzniL82