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Posts Tagged ‘Brian Hoops’

NWL Grand Opening

Posted by flairwhoooooo on April 24, 2018

“It was fun while it lasted.” That is what Ace Steel said to me after news broke that the National Rasslin League was closing. “It was the most fun I’ve ever had” Steel added.

Yes indeed it was.

Judging by fan posts on social media, the NWL has a special place in their hearts. Fans displayed a wide range of emotions after the news of the NWL closing. Sadness, disbelief and shock were common themes.

But it was not only fans who were surprised on Thursday, April 12. The wrestlers and office staff had no idea it was coming.

“NWL meant a lot to me. It was the best of things a wrestler could want in a promotion, and it was in my backyard. I am grateful for the opportunity that it gave me to develop a character, work tv, and form great friendships. Truly, it was the most fun I have had in wrestling.” Niles Plonk told me upon reflecting on the NWL.

Personally, I am not totally surprised the NWL is no longer in business, but I am very surprised at the timing. The closing came just a little over 48 hours prior a training seminar with Dr. Tom Prichard, a meet and greet with the wrestlers before a grand opening of the new performance center and custom designed arena.

“I truly believe it would have turned into the ECW arena/ Arena Mexico. A destination place closely tied to the city. I wish we could have at least done one show there so all the fans could have seen it” lamented Michael Strider.

The promotion had lofty expectations and was willing to spend money to achieve desired results, but ultimately it would come down to how long the money backers would continue to back the promotion. In this case, the promotion was solely owned by Major Baisden and had no other financial backing.

Baisden, best known in the Kansas City area as the President and co-founder of Iris Data Services, Inc., sold Iris Data Services to Epic Systems Inc for $134 million in April, 2015. Baisden had a love for baseball, football and pro wrestling; but didn’t have enough money to buy his own baseball or football team, so he decided to start his own wrestling promotion and promote it differently than traditional wrestling promotions.

Contrary to WWE, ROH or any other wrestling promotion; Baisden offered wrestlers and office staff full time contracts, paid housing, monthly meal budgets and health insurance. He was a businessman and treated the wrestlers and office staff as employees. With that type of overhead expense, the promotion would have to draw a large amount of fans just to breakeven. Baisden knew it would struggle at first, but he had deep pockets.

Originally, the NWL signed more than 50 wrestlers to contracts, including twelve who worked for the promotion full time as well as full time office staff. The NWL is built out a 10,000 square foot building, just north of Kansas City to be used as a training and performance center. The promotion had a goal to run shows on alternating Saturday nights in Kansas City and alternating Thursday nights in St. Louis. Throughout the season, the final show of each month will pit wrestlers from KC and St. Louis against each other, with the city earning the most victories recognized as the league’s best town. The NWL’s top city will also earn negotiation rights for all new talent entering the NWL. It is a business model geared more towards minor league hockey or minor league baseball, as the promotion hoped to build a loyal fanbase in each city.

When that strategy didn’t work out, the promotion shifted gears and began touring the Central States territory of Joplin, Springfield, St. Louis, Kansas City and St. Joseph, Missouri. Each of those markets got television clearance and recently the NWL added the Gulf Coast to their syndication network.

Baisden had his hand in other investments, notably real estate and the stock market, when those investments failed, wrestling operations ceased.

Veteran talent like Jeremy Wyatt, Ace Steel, Michael Strider and Niles Plonk led a young NWL locker room of up and coming talented wrestlers like Jet & Jax Royal, Dak Draper, Maverick and Thor Theriot. Some of the young talent in NWL have the potential to make it to WWE.

Though the NWL didn’t last very long, the promotion made a major impact on many lives. The NWL reached hundreds of children in schools through their anti bullying campaign. Some of the staff and full time wrestlers spent countless hours traveling and speaking to children about bullying, what kind of a price tag can you place on that?

Some of the wrestlers were given opportunities they would have never received anywhere else, paid full time salaries with benefits and health insurance. With the company closing down, all wrestlers will become free agents. Wrestlers who developed a character under the NWL will be able to use their character after the leave the NWL.

“I’m crushed that it ended, but overjoyed that it happened. The NWL core roster has become a family over the last year and you can’t replace that. Working full time for the NWL allowed me to find myself, as a wrestler and as a human being. This has been the best year of my life, and it’s only the beginning for the Mile High Magnum.” – Dak Draper

Guys like Dak Draper and Jet & Jax Royal were allowed to grow and develop their skills inside the squared circle in front of live crowds. They learned to listen to the crowd, how to develop psychology and improved each time they wrestled. Niles Plonk was able to debut a new gimmick, grow and develop that gimmick and then get that gimmick over to crowds around the Midwest. Jeremy Wyatt cemented his legacy as the best wrestler on the independent scene.

“I’ve met some of the most driven people at NWL. We had a great product of professionals and if I had a definitive end forecasted when it started, I would still have done it!” – Ace Steel

Owner Chris Gough closed Metro Pro to work for NWL. “Major Baisden didn’t need to start a wrestling company. He didn’t need to do anything. Major could have comfortably lived in a nice house in a nice neighborhood, traveled the world 10 times over, invested in various money-making sure things… but his love for pro wrestling led him to create the NWL. The abrupt end of NWL aside, I witnessed the vast growth of at least 20 people in the business that would have never received this kind of financial dedication on any level — not even WWE. Thanks, Major. We all wish it could have lasted forever, but the friends, stories and experiences you gave us will be some of the greatest stuff we’ll ever do.” – Chris Gough in a facebook post.

Thanks to the NWL, Major Baisden, Chris Gough, all the NWL staff and the wrestlers. Your 15 months in existence made a huge impact on the Kansas City community and 2017 the best year of professional wrestling that I can remember.

By: Brian Hoops

brian.hoops44@gmail.com

Brian has been a wrestling fan for over 40 years. His articles on wrestling haveappeared in the Wrestling Observer, Slam Wrestling, Pro Wrestling Torch, Missouri Wrestling Revival and Lou Thesz National Wrestling Hall of Fame. Brian has interviewed some of the greatest wrestlers in professional wrestling history. His feature, “Daily Pro Wrestling History” appears at http://www.f4wonline.com each day. Follow Brian on twitter @brianhoops

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Draper and Wyatt Set to Collide Again

Posted by flairwhoooooo on January 9, 2018

By Brian Hoops

On Saturday, January 13th; the NWL presents its biggest championship match to date. It’s not Alpha vs. Omega, but its The Monarch against the Magnum; the King of Kansas City vs. the Don Juan of Denver; the Champion vs. the former Champion.

Jeremy Wyatt, the newly crowned NWL Champion, will defend his title against the man who was never pinned but still lost the title, Dak Draper.

Wyatt won the title December 8, 2017 in Kansas City when he last eliminated Dak Draper in a battle royal. Originally, general manager Matt Jackson had declared the winner of the battle royal would go on to face then Champion Dak Draper for the title at a future date, however Draper’s arrogance got the better of him and Draper decided to put the belt at stake in the battle royal. Draper entered #1 and outlasted all other participants, except Wyatt who eliminated Draper to win the championship.

Now Draper is out for revenge against Wyatt and to regain his lost title. “I’m so sure that I’m going to beat Wyatt that, last week, I had a box of “2-time NWL champ” shirts printed up,” exclaims the confident challenger.

Draper won the title in a tournament final on April 1, 2017; defeating Blaine Meeks to become the first and only NWL Champion. Draper held the belt throughout the 2017 and virtually cleaned out all challengers for his title, including Hans Gruber, Red Cloud, Gil Rogers, Dez Wellston, Jet Royal, Blaine Meeks and Thor Theriot. Draper was never pinned by any of these competitors, in fact his only pinfall losses have occurred in tag team matches.

Wyatt was beaten out in the tournament by Thor Theriot, but quickly worked his way back up the championship ladder in 2017 by defeating nearly everyone in his path. Including avenging his loss to Thor Theriot and beating Jack Foster, Mike Outlaw and Anthony “Sharkbait” Guittereiz in notable feuds.

What lengths will Wyatt go to keep the title? Will fellow Foundation members Michael Strider and Ace Steel, the NWL Tag Team Champions, get involved in the match?

“I don’t really feel like I need to go to any ‘lengths’ to keep my title. I just have to show up and do what I say I’m going to do. Beat Dak Draper. Beat him right in the middle of the ring. Leave no doubt I’m the better man. I already know this and Saturday night, everyone else will too” explains the newly crowned champion Wyatt when asked about the upcoming contest.

Draper’s quest to regain the title should be one of the many great storylines from the NWL in 2018.

“Draper and Wyatt are two of the best wrestlers I’ve ever been around in 20 years of the wrestling business, from the indies to WWE”, explained former WWE writer and current NWL executive Chris Gough.

“Jeremy Wyatt has the rare knack of combating any style he faces. Dak Draper’s amateur background puts him in the same category. Both are excellent showman and entertainers as well. This will be one of our best matches ever!”

The NWL, which has been on its own holiday since running a show December 15 in St. Joseph, Missouri and hasn’t run a show in Kansas City since December 8, makes their return to Overland Park, Kansas as they kick off the “Evolution Tour” Saturday, January 13. Besides the NWL Championship match with Champion Jeremy Wyatt defending against Challenger, Dak Draper; Eddie Kingston debuts against Leonel Howlett; Besties in the World teams with Jack Foster against Ace Steel, Marco Howlett and Maddux; Jet Royal takes on Niles Plonk; Mike Outlaw wrestles Bolt Brady (Blaine Meeks), Thor Theriot and Sharkbait Guetteriez in a four way match, Michael Strider wrestles Gil Rogers, Marti Belle takes on Laynie Luck and Gary Jay will also be in action.

Other upcoming NWL events are scheduled for January 19 in O’Fallon, Missouri; January 27 in Kansas City, Kansas; February 3 in Joplin, Missouri and February 9 in St. Joseph, Missouri.

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From the Rebel to the Monarch – Jeremy Wyatt Could Very Well be the Best

Posted by flairwhoooooo on November 30, 2017

By Brian Hoops

Photos Brian Kelley

“Not only is Jeremy Wyatt a great athlete, he also has one of the best minds for the
business. He is SO underrated on a national level that’s its criminal!”NWL Tag Team
champion Michael Strider.

2017 will be known as one of the greatest years for in ring performances in professional
wrestling history. 4 star, 5 star and even 6 star matches are seen from every level of
wrestling this year and one wrestler who has consistently produced some of the best
matches in 2017 is Jeremy Wyatt.

Wyatt may not be a household name nationally, but Wyatt’s talent is on par with any
professional wrestler in any promotion.

Wyatt has carved out a career mostly on the Midwest independent scene but now
wrestles exclusively for the National Wrasslin League, based in Kansas City, Missouri.
Wyatt has been the champion of the 3XWrestling promotion in Iowa, the Central States
Champion and Metro Pro Wrestling champion.

Wyatt, born June 26, 1978 in Kansas City, Missouri has lived in Kansas City his entire
life. Wyatt went to Raytown High School (suburb of Kansas City), excelled in football as
a wide receiver, making 2nd team all conference and all district his senior year and drew
some interest in football powerhouse Northwest Missouri State University, Central
Missouri State and Mid American Nazarene. Wyatt claims baseball was his best sport,
but Wyatt was bored with the sport and never played for his high school team, instead
played for summer league teams.

Raised by his father who worked mostly nights, Wyatt played sports with his friends and
discovered professional wrestling when he was 5 or 6 years old. “My all time favorite
was Sting, followed by Macho Man Randy Savage. I was always drawn to those 2
because their gear was always so colorful and they had ridiculous amounts of charisma.
I met Sting once after a show at Memorial Hall and he talked to me for a good 5 minutes
or so. I was 11 at the time and he was already my favorite and that experience sealed
the deal” Wyatt reminisced.

When Wyatt was younger, he went to every show that came to town. “My friends and I
would sit in either the 1st or 2nd row, and we would always start chants. When you’re a
kid, and everyone joins in, you think you’re the coolest kids in the building.”
“There was a show at Municipal (Municipal Auditorium) and we were in the 2nd row. My
dad’s friend took us. He got a little liquored up and ended up dumping an entire beer on
Rick Rude during a match with Roddy Piper. Security came over, but no one would point
him out since he was with ‘the kids starting all the chants’, everyone said it was ‘some
guy that went running back that way’.”

Wyatt started training in St. Joseph, Missouri in 2001 with a guy named Steve Estes.
Estes taught Wyatt how to bump and other basics, but Estes had a poor reputation in
the wrestling industry which hurt Wyatt when he tried to get bookings. “I was grateful for
the opportunity to get my foot in the door, but I should’ve done more thorough research
and went somewhere more reputable.”

“Steve had such a bad rep that I was guilty by association, and had a stigma placed on
me in the area. Once I was able to get on some shows that didn’t involve him, which
took a few years, people saw I was decent enough to get some opportunities,” Wyatt
remembered.

“Wyatt is this area’s best kept secret. I wish he had traveled more early on. He has a
really good mind for wrestling. His work right now is top notch.” NWL Tag Team
champion Ace Steel.

Once the doors to the independent scene were opened, Wyatt started working matches
in NWA Central States. “Michael Strider (fellow Foundation member) was one of the
guys to vouch for me and push for someone to give me an opportunity. He had some
pull at NWA Central States,” Wyatt remembered fondly.

“When I met Jeremy Wyatt back in 2010, he was already a well-known wrestler in the
Midwest. Since then, he has become the best wrestler I’ve seen who has not signed a
deal with WWE or any other national/international company. When I ran Metro Pro
Wrestling for six years, he was the best champion I had, and he was the backbone of
the company. The years he was on top were the best years we ever had.” – former
WWE writer and Metro Pro Wrestling owner Chris Gough.

“I had a stretch where I went down to Florida in 2010-2011 and had a chance to wrestle
Tyler Black (Seth Rollins) to a 30 minute draw when he was ROH champion. I’ve also
had a couple of matches with Christopher Daniels that I’m really proud of. Daniels is the
guy who drew me to independent wrestling. He is the guy that really stood out to me, so
he ended up becoming my ‘dream match’ back then,” Wyatt remembers.

Wyatt blends his athleticism along with the ability to work his opponents strengths into
telling a story in his matches. It’s a old school approach that works perfectly in the NWL.
“The best thing I’ve ever done was go to a day long seminar with Nick Dinsmore in
summer of 2008. I was floundering a bit, not improving at the clip I wanted. The way he
explained things just seemed to click. Literally felt like a lightbulb coming on. From that
day on, I think my work, and the way I did things changed, very much for the better,”
Wyatt explains.

“In NWL, he’s a very respected ring general who isn’t the most vocal leader, but
definitely leads by example. He’s one of the reasons I continue to enjoy working in
wrestling. It’s the details that make him the best. Every move and decision he makes in
the ring has a purpose. Every sequence is part of a story. Wyatt can make you believe
he can take down a man twice his size because he understands psychology as well as
anyone.” – Chris Gough, NWL Executive.

When working against a giant brawler like Jack Foster, Wyatt incorporated Foster’s
ability to fight and punch into the match, leading to a spot where Foster hit his hand
against the steel ring post and “injured” his hand the rest of the match. Wyatt worked
spots against the injured hand into the match, reminiscent of the nostalgic Andersons
tag team who would injure a body part and work their entire match around the injured
body part.

“He is undoubtedly the pound-for-pound best professional wrestler I have worked with.
That goes for any level – Midwest indie, national indie names, long-time WWE stars. I
still consider him one of the top talents in the country today.” – Midnight Guthrie,
announcer.

Wyatt showed his versatility in a feud with rookie Anthony “Sharkbait” Gutierrez.
Gutierrez is a former MMA fighter who is athletic but transitioning into professional
wrestling. Wyatt worked MMA spots into the match for Gutierrez to shine when he was
on offense and made the match believable and competitive.

“Jeremy is the hardest worker I’ve ever met. He’s continuously working on improving as
a wrestler and is obsessed with having different matches for different scenarios. There’s
no such thing as a “standard Wyatt match”. – Michael Strider

 

Everything Wyatt does is worth purpose. Two of Wyatt’s moniker’s is the “Monarch” and
the “King of Kansas City.” Engraved on his long trunks is the head of a lion; the
“Monarch” and “King of the Jungle.” What many fans may not realize is Wyatt is a huge
baseball fan and the Monarch name is also a tribute to the old Negro baseball league
team that was based in Kansas City, the Kansas City Monarchs.

“I do put a lot of thought into things, I’m going to work a match differently if it’s just a one
off against someone than I would if it’s the 1st match of a new feud. And the same goes
with the 1st match of a feud would be worked differently than the blow off. Just like with
matches, building and telling a story, I like doing the same (probably even more so) with
a long drawn out feud. I think I’ve developed a pretty good idea what works, what
doesn’t. I think I process things pretty well as far as how to feel out the crowd.
Sometimes you have an idea, if they’re not digging it, you have to be able to adjust. I
never go into a match thinking I have to do anything for sake of doing it. If it fits into the
story, cool. If not, I don’t need to force a square peg in a round hole,” Wyatt explained.

Despite being one of the best wrestlers in the Midwest, Wyatt has never really pursued
a chance to wrestle for a national promotion. “Wrestling, as much as I love it, has never
been the be all, end all for me. I am happy with my life, and I never felt the need to
make certain sacrifices that would be needed to ‘make it’ in wrestling.”

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Dak Draper – The Mile High Magnum By Brian Hoops

Posted by flairwhoooooo on October 18, 2017

By Brian Hoops
Photos Brian Kelley

July 31, 2014 was a career defining moment of young Sam Udell, having just been cut from his
WWE developmental contract, Udell faced an uncertain future. “It was weird, I didn’t know what I
was going to do, but I knew that I would be alright. I was excited for the new adventure. I love
stories. I love telling stories, I love listening to stories. I knew I’d get a lot of cool stories out of
the next few years,” Udell explained.

Udell was born in Denver, Colorado on March 20, 1988 to Chris and Janet Udell. Udell’s father
was a huge influence on him growing up. “My dad always knew that there was something
different about me. He would tell me that other people can grow up to work 9-5 jobs, I’m
supposed to do something else, I’m supposed to be in front of people.He was big on goal
setting, and being conscious of whether or not what you’re doing will bring you closer or further
from achieving your goals.”

Growing up in Denver, Udell was an avid sports fan, following the Denver Broncos NFL team
and the WWE (WWF at the time).

Udell played football and wrestled at St. Mary’s Prep high school in Colorado Springs, a suburb
of Denver and lead the state of Colorado in quarterback sacks his senior year from his
defensive end spot. Udell would win male athlete of the year and player of the year honors in
football and city and league wrestling champion and Tri-Peaks league wrestler of the year.

Even though he has the work ethic of a Champion Dak Draper always has time to enjoy the view in the mirror.

Udell was recruited by Chadron State, a Division II wrestling power house in Chadron, Nebraska
to join the University’s wrestling program. Udell wrestled and lettered three years and placed in
the top 12 in the nation his senior year in the NCAA national tournament. It was at the NCAA
finals that he caught the eye of WWE talent scout Gerry Brisco. “Late in the summer of 2011
they brought me to FCW for a tryout. I was in FCW for a week. The only thing I did well was my
promo.”

Udell didn’t get signed, but Brisco told him to work on his body and to find a wrestling school. “I
moved back to Denver and ended up meeting Pat Tanaka and trained with Pat for about nine
months. Gerry Brisco called me again and offered me another tryout. I did well in the ring and in
the promo again and after the promo, they pulled me aside and told me they were gonna sign
me.”

Udell signed a two year WWE developmental contract in August, 2012. The first year he spent
in Tampa before the current WWE Performance Center was built in Orlando. Udell worked in
developmental as Travis Tyler, mostly in an enhancement role.

Udell was released from the developmental contract on July 31, 2014 and moved back to
Denver to work on the independent scene. Udell made ends meet by becoming a personal
trainer and wrestled weekends on the independents.

Unbeknownst to Udell, the wheels were in motion in Kansas City, Missouri for the biggest
opportunity of his wrestling career.

A lifelong wrestling fan by the name of Major Baisden sold his tech company, Iris Data Services,
for $134 million and was looking for his next business opportunity. Born in Sacramento,
California, Baisden graduated from the University of California-Davis at only 19 years old.
Basiden worked as a manager for the legal tech support unit of the California Department of
Justice and helped to move the company into the digital age. In 2007, Baisden moved to
Kansas City and formed his own company, Iris Data Services.

After selling his company in January, 2015 and staying on through the year as a consultant,
Baisden contacted Chris Gough. Gough had experience working for the WWE (1999-2003) and
founded Metro Pro Wrestling in Kansas City in 2010. Gough also produced the documentary on
wrestling in the Central States territory called “KC On the Mat.” Baisden offered to buy Metro
Pro Wrestling and hired Gough to run his new organization, the “National Wrasslin League” in
August, 2016.

Gough was named directer of operations of the new company and his duties include,
announcing, booking and hiring of talent. One of the first calls Gough made when recruiting
wrestlers was to Udell. Gough had always wanted to book Udell for his Metro Pro Wrestling
promotion. “He was appealing to me because he had been to the WWE like me. I knew he
would appreciate this opportunity because of that.”

Udell met with Gough and Baisden in Kansas City, liked what he heard and signed a two year
contract. Udell became Dakota (Dak) Draper from Denver, Colorado.

“I gained a lot of confidence wrestling in the independents. That was the thing that held me back
in WWE, I was always trying to be a character instead of being myself. Now I can be Dak
Draper who thinks he is above everyone else.”

Draper refers to himself as the “Mile High Magnum” as a tribute to his home city and one of his
favorite wrestlers, Magnum TA. Draper says being a heel is natural for him. “Dr. Tom (Prichard)
told us the first day of (WWE) developmental that the best wrestling characters are extensions
of ourselves with the volume turned up. I didn’t really understand it at the time, but I am starting
to now.”

Draper exploded on the NWL scene and quickly became the most polarizing figure on the NWL
roster. Boasting to be 6’5”, tan and handsome; Draper’s arrogance attracted the ire of some
fans, but also the adulation of many more. Draper’s t-shirt is the best selling merchandise item
for the NWL.

Draper won a tournament to crown the first NWL Kansas City champion, defeating rival Blaine
Meeks in the final. Draper has since cleared out all challengers in the division and remains the
only undefeated member of the NWL roster.

While speaking into a microphone has always been Draper’s strength, his verbal skills and in
ring presence have improved during his time in the NWL. “I created a weekly YouTube show
called ‘The Magnum Minute’ which has helped me so much on the microphone. Editing videos
of myself over and over makes it easy to improve.

Draper appreciates being involved in the NWL promotion. “I really want to make the NWL a
successful company. Its really cool to be involved in the process of creating wrestling instead of
people telling you what to do.”

No one wrestler is more giving of his time in promoting wrestling for the NWL than Draper.
Draper’s verbal skills and outgoing personality make him the go to man on the NWL roster when
it comes to radio and television appearances for promoting upcoming events. Draper routinely
spends his free time making personal appearances trying to promote the NWL brand.

“I got the right basics in NXT and then went out and got a chance to apply what I learned on my
own. I got to think and grow with no safety nets,” Draper explained when talking about his in ring
performance. “I’m not playing a role when I’m out there anymore, I’m being who I’ve wanted to
be for my entire life. I’m comfortable when all eyes are on me, and I’m at my best when I’m
comfortable.”

Through aggressive marketing efforts, NWL has secured television time in Kansas City for the
first time since the mid to late 1980’s when Central States was a TV staple. I asked Draper if
being on local television has brought him any recognition when he is out in downtown Kansas
City. “Actually, I was out in the Power & Light District and someone recognized me. That didn’t
happen, even in Orlando. I had some tickets to our next show with me and gave the guy a
couple of tickets to watch the Mile High Magnum.”

NWL television is also available in St. Joseph, Joplin and Springfield, Missouri as well as
Wichita, Kansas. The NWL you tube channel also shows the television program after they have
aired on TV.

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Draper Retains NWL Title Over Meeks

Posted by flairwhoooooo on September 4, 2017

By Brian Hoops
Photos Brian Kelley

In a hard fought one on one contest, Dak Draper defeated Blaine Meeks by referee stoppage in a no dq match to retain his NWL Kansas City Championship Saturday night, September 2 at the Scottish Rites Temple in Kansas City, Missouri.  Draper used at least three different steel chairs in brutal encounter, but his actions after the match ended is what drew the ire of NWL President, Major Baisden. “I am going to work with my full team of advisors in determining what the best course of action is for dealing with Dak Draper’s future in the NWL,” Baised wrote on Twitter.

Draper used two of his Draper bombs but couldn’t pin Meeks, even after using chairs to Meek’s back repeatedly. Meeks put on his cape and hit his finishing move, “comic mischief”, but Draper was able to kick out.
 
The finish came when Draper used Meek’s own cape, tied to the ropes to choke out the challenger and the referee had no choice but to stop the contest.
Draper who went to the hospital after the match to receive stitches for a cut near his eyes, continued to attack Meeks after the match. Draper wrapped Meeks legs around the ring post and repeatedly hit Meeks with a chair in his already damaged knee.
Looking at the company website, Meeks is not advertised for upcoming shows through September and Draper could be stripped of the title as he is listed on events, but his matches are not advertised as title matches.
The crowd the Scottish Rites Temple was down from normal, estimated at 225 fans as the WWE was at the Sprint Center and likely hurt the normally large crowd.
In other matches, The Besties in the World defeated the Howlettes in a wild brawl to advance to the finals of the NWL Tag Team Tournament,
Jack Foster defeated Michael Strider and Mike Outlaw defeated Niles Plonk.
After the match, a security video played, showing Plonk’s butler, Belvedere was not really injured, which freed Red Cloud from his commitment to serve Plonk.
Also, Thor Theriot defeated Maverick by countout,
Devlin defeated Gil Rogers, Jet Royal defeated Ken Dharma and
Jeremy Wyatt pinned Anthony Guitteriez.
There have many been many, many great wrestling matches so far in 2017. Two of the best occurred in the NWL Saturday night, September 2. The Draper vs. Meeks and Wyatt vs. Guittereiz matches were among the best of 2017 on any level.

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Brian Hoops Proclaims that the NWL is the Hottest Wrestling Promotion in Missouri

Posted by flairwhoooooo on March 13, 2017

By Brian Hoops

Photos Brian Kelley

As first seen at http://www.wrestlingobserver.com

There is a new independent wrestling promotion, and its changing the traditional way of running a wrestling promotion. The National Wrasslin League was founded in September by Major Baisden and ran its inaugural show in Kansas City on January 7. According to its press release, “the National Wrasslin’ League (NWL) is reviving the historical roots of the business. Fueled by intercity rivalries, the NWL prides itself on family-friendly, storyline-driven programming that delivers thrilling athletic action and entertaining characters.”

NWL has financial backing behind it. Baisden, best known in the Kansas City area as the President and co-founder of Iris Data Services, Inc., sold Iris Data Services to Epic Systems Inc for $134 million in April, 2015. Baisden has a love for baseball, football and pro wrestling and decided to start his own wrestling promotion and promote it differently than traditional wrestling promotions.

Major Baisden does his best to keep Michael Strider from losing his temper under the bright lights at the Scottish Rite Temple.

In October of 2016, NWL reached an agreement to acquire the assets of Metro Pro Wrestling, a local promotion based in Kansas City, which became part of NWL KC. Metro Pro was the brainchild of Chris Gough, a former WWE creative team member who moved back to his native Kansas City to start a family. Gough is also the man behind the really awesome documentary, “KC: Beyond the Mat” that focused on the Kansas City based Central States and Heartland of America promotions. Gough was offered a full time position in the NWL offices and works behind the scenes running the new promotion. NWL also acquired St. Louis based Anarchy Pro Wrestling.

The promotion plans to run shows on alternating Saturday nights in Kansas City and alternating Thursday nights in St. Louis, at the Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City and the Casa Loma Ballroom in St. Louis, Missouri. Soon, the St. Louis shows will run on Sunday afternoons. The Scottish Rite Temple is also home to Invicta MMA shows. Throughout the season, the final show of each month will pit wrestlers from KC and St. Louis against each other, with the city earning the most victories recognized as the league’s best town. The NWL’s top city will also earn negotiation rights for all new talent entering the NWL in 2018. It is a business model geared more towards minor league hockey or minor league baseball, as the promotion hopes to build a loyal fanbase in each city.

According to Gough, NWL has signed more than 50 wrestlers to contracts, including eight who work for the promotion full time. These wrestlers receive full benefits, including health insurance and work full time for the promotion, even though they only run four shows per month. NWL is building out a 10,000 square foot building, just north of Kansas City to be used as a training and performance center.

The first show in Kansas City drew what had to be considered an excellent crowd for its debut show, 510 fans thanks in part to flash sales and other promo code offers. Ringside seats are $40, but if you commit to a membership, the cost is $50 a month with additional membership perks.

St. Louis sold only 225 tickets until a strong walkup pushed total fans in attendance to near 500. The crowd for the second Kansas City show was nearly half of the first. This will be one of the struggles of the promotion, how to maintain crowds when running every other week with many of the same wrestlers.
The promotion plans to crown a Kansas City and St. Louis champion through a tournament this spring. The two champions will then square off in a mid-season showdown, with the winner earning home-arena advantage for the year’s big finale in December. On the night of the season finale, the NWL’s League champion will also be decided that evening with a tourney involving the St. Louis and KC titleholders as well as the No. 1 contenders for both belts. The December spectacular will also crown the NWL’s tag-team champions in a tournament featuring the four teams with the best records over the course of the 12month season.

The show I attended was certainly entertaining and different than the normal independent show. Baisden acquired a jumbotron style video board that sits on a stage where the wrestlers come out and to the ring, very similar to how WWE has its wrestlers come to the ring. Baisden is a fixture at the shows, watching and interacting with fans and even getting into the ring to brow beat a local manager. There is some good talent on the shows, including top area heel Dak Draper (Sam Udell, a recent cut from WWE Developmental),

Dak Draper

Ken Dharma (Mike Sydal) and

Niles Plonk. Plonk has the best gimmick since Madonna’s boyfriend gimmick that Louis Spiccoli used, as he’s a wine connoisseur. Plonk actually owns a vineyard in Missouri.

Independent name talent including Kyle O’Reilly and Arik Cannon, have become part of the NWL in recent weeks.

 

Update News from NWL KC

Our next NWL event is Saturday, March 18, at 7 p.m. inside the Scottish Rite Temple! Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

Matches announced so far include:

– NWL KC Championship Tournament Semi-Finals Match – Dak Draper vs. Niles Plonk
– NWL KC Championship Tournament Semi-Finals Match – Red Cloud vs. Blaine Meeks
– HUGE Tag Team Match: Royal Blood vs. The Blood Brothers
– Triple Threat Match: Jeremy Wyatt vs. Thor Theriot vs. Scott Slade

More matches to be announced!

Buy our monthly/yearly FIGHTCLUB KC packages to save money!

FIGHTCLUB KC GOLD (Ringside) – https://shop.nwleague.com/product/fightclub-kc-ringside/

FIGHTCLUB KC SILVER (Orchestra) – https://shop.nwleague.com/product/fightclub-kc-orchestra/

FIGHTCLUB KC BRONZE (Balcony) – https://shop.nwleague.com/product/fightclub-kc-balcony/

 

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