The National Wrestling Alliance crowned a new National Heavyweight Champion on Saturday when Damien Wayne defeated Lance Erikson and Chance Prophet to claim the belt that had been vacated when former champion Kahagas won the NWA World Championship.
Wayne was thought to be the next world champion and at one time was in line to get the belt before Colt Cabana and Adam Pearce left the title in the middle of the ring in Australia leaving the title vacant as they finished their "Seven Levels of Hate" series that saw Cabana win the tie-breaker but refuse the belt in what the NWA called an "unsanctioned" match.
Chance Prophet, a former National Champion, lost that title to Kahagas in a brutal match in Florida in spring of 2012 and since then he has been lobbying to get the NWA World Championship. Sources close to the NWA say Prophet, while a great performer in the ring, because of his character, does not fit the mold for what the NWA wants in a champion.
Erikson has been a source of controversy after legal troubles and alleged mismanagement in his role as booker for NWA Mountain State. Erikson was at the forefront of a storm of disputation between he and the NWAMS promoter after a number of shows were canceled last summer with virtually no notice. According to sources Erikson had told the promoter he was able to line-up sponsorship for the shows which included then NWA Champion Adam Pearce, to help offset costs. The promoter would find out those sponsorships had not come to fruition and when his out-of-pocket costs skyrocketed to over $6,000 he pulled the plug on the shows leaving a number of wrestlers without bookings.
The NWA itself continues to be mired in its own controversy and the Board of Governors has come under fire for poor decision making where major title matches are concerned. With two of their three major titles vacant the announcement made to fill the vacancies came each time with less than a week to build the program leaving a number of empty arena seats which many say may have been filled if there had been more time to properly promote the show.
NWA CEO Bruce Thapre and Vice President Chris Ronquillo have seemingly turned on NWA COO Fred Rubenstein and rumors persist that Tharpe and Ronquillo are trying to force Rubenstein out. Ronquillo continues to be a bane for the NWA due to his perceived heavy-handed and near bullying tactics when dealing with constituents and supporters. Two long-time supporters Phil Varlese and (former NWA President) Howard Brody have recently pulled their promotions out of the NWA organization and have spoken out against the new NWA regime.
The NWA appears to be gaining more detractors than supporters of late mainly due to the quantum perfidy of its owners.
(Update: NWA Grindhouse has just announced that they are leaving the NWA due to "creative differences.")
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