2018: The Year In Review
December 24th, 2018
WINNIPEG, Mb - Premier Championship Wrestling completed their historic seventeenth year of operations as 2018 came to a close, delivering incredible matches, huge superstars and shocking twists & turns along the way! PCW proved again, not only were they Manitoba's longest running professional wrestling promotion, but simply the best as well.
The year began in the aftermath of Kenny Omega's "Homecoming", as 400+ people over-stuffed Doubles Bar on November 25th, 2017. The entire city was abuzz for the return of PCW's greatest son as Omega was treated like a rock star and tickets sold out in a matter of days.
That event was newsworthy for more than just the return of the world's best wrestler, as titles changed hands and alliances began to crumble.
The Gentlemen's Club - Alix Vanna, Antonio Scorpio & The London Dynasty - had run roughshod over PCW for much of that year and appeared unstoppable ever since Scorpio's shocking decision to join the group in July. Borne out of frustration, Scorpio had been unable to defeat Vanna for the PCW Canadian Championship and accepted the Club's offer, telling the flabbergasted fans "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em".
But things began to take a sour turn for the Gentlemen as 2017 came to an end. At "Homecoming", Vanna was ordered by PCW Commissioner Christopher Marxwell to defend his Canadian Championship against TWO former champions - "Social Media Superstar" Jay Walker and "The Prodigal Son" Scott Justice.
When the smoke cleared, Justice had regained the title, ending Vanna's year on a very bad note. Things only went down from there for the Club as The London Dynasty & Scorpio lost a Six Man Tag Team Match to super-fan James Korba and his hand-picked partners "Sweet" Bobby Schink & Shao Ming!
That match almost didn't happen as Korba's legal adviser Michael James Arnott announced he was cancelling the match due to his client refusing to follow his advice. Korba's reply? A punch to the face and the dismissal of Arnott.
Korba's choice of Schink as one of his partner's was no surprise. The first ever "One Man Tag Team Champion", Schink had engaged in a violent feud with the Gentlemen's Club for much of 2017, culminating in his victory over the London Dynasty for the PCW Tag Team Championship when he cashed in his Golden Ticket on October 27th. Ming's appearance was his first in over a year and the former Canadian Champion looked as good as ever!
With that defeat it appeared the Gentlemen's Club might truly be shattered. They were belt-less, beaten and hated. Things would change significantly in 2018.
But 2017 ended with controversy for the PCW Heavyweight Championship. In the main event of "Homecoming", champion Jackie "The Jet" Lee faced Anderson Tyson Moore.
Moore had returned to PCW alongside his Team Impact partner, and best friend, Robby Royce earlier in 2017, making their first appearances in the promotion in seven years! They came with one objective, to disrupt and destroy, targeting Jackie and his championship (and gladly assaulting PCW Founder Andrew Shallcross along the way).
At "Homecoming", ATM appeared to defeat Jackie and capture the title. Royce had illegally interfered and laid out the champion, the referee missed it and the event ended with the belt in the possession of Moore. But Commissioner Marxwell reversed the decision and returned the belt to Jackie who seemed reluctant to even accept it. Feeling defeated, "The Jet" ended the year vowing to reconsider his future.
"Homecoming" was named in honour of the return of Kenny Omega! He and partner "Canadian Idol" Chris Stevens arrived with one goal - to avenge Kenny's pinfall loss to "The Grizzled Veteran" Chad Tatum the previous May. Though now retired, Tatum accepted the challenge, choosing Mike McSugar as his partner.
The match was incredible, as would be expected, and left the ring and ringside area covered in lego's and marshmallows! Kenny secured the victory for his team and told the sold out building that without PCW, there would never have been a Kenny Omega. He vowed to return...and he would not disappoint.
In the wake of "Homecoming", PCW entered 2018 with much excitement and enthusiasm.
Jackie Lee was the PCW Heavyweight Champion after Commissioner Marxwell returned the belt to him. Scott Justice was PCW Canadian Champion. And the hottest rookie in the nation, Bobby Schink was the One Man PCW Tag Team Champion.
The year began on January 13th 2018 with PCW's "New Years Knockout!". An irate Gentlemen's Club began the event addressing the crowd and seemingly airing their dirty laundry for all the world to see. Alix Vanna publicly blamed Scorpio for the reason he lost the Canadian Championship to Scott Justice, telling Scorpio he was recruited to the group for one reason - to be the "Club Enforcer" and he had better learn his place.
While the fans hated the Gentlemen's Club, their shock over Scorpio's betrayal the previous year had turned to a burgeoning desire to see him return to his prior glory. He continued to be cheered wildly, but his silent acceptance of abuse at Vanna's hands was clearly a disappointment to many.
The Club then turned their attention to long time rivals Jackie Lee & Scott Justice. While Jackie & Scott were clearly close friends, both were extremely competitive. The Club played on that fact by goading them into a tag team match, telling both friends it was only a matter of time before one of them turned on the other.
Lee & Justice accepted the match even as they were scheduled to face each other in the first ever Title Vs Title contest later in the evening. They reiterated their respect for each other and their desire to compete fairly. "May the best man win," they agreed.
But was it that simple?
The London Dynasty had been humiliated at losing the PCW Tag Team Championship to one man, "Sweet" Bobby Schink, the previous October. As deserving as Schink was, Leo & David London pointed out that they had only lost via Golden Ticket Cash In after they had regained the title in an extremely grueling triple threat match. They had felt further sting by losing a Six Man Match at "Homecoming" in November, being pinned by a fan.
But 2018 was a new year and the London's were determined to change their fortunes an to prove a great tag team can always beat two great single wrestlers. And that they did, defeating the dream team of PCW Heavyweight Champion Jackie Lee & PCW Canadian Champion Scott Justice.
Vanna's stated goal of injecting a little chaos into PCW seemed to be working as Jackie accidentally struck Scott, leading directly to the loss. But it was Leo London's veteran savvy at work as he pulled Scott in front of him to take the blow from Lee. As the London's celebrated their huge victory, Scott and Jackie exchanged heated words.
Riding the high of that initial victory in 2018, the Gentlemen's Club looked to settle all their scores as Vanna faced Bobby Schink & Jay Walker in a Triple Threat Match. Antonio Scorpio appeared to heed Vanna's orders to be the "Club Enforcer" as he made his way to ringside. Some fans felt Scorpio's words of encouragement were somewhat sarcastic and he made no effort to help Vanna who lost the match.
As the self-professed leader of the Club, Vanna later attempted to set an example for his enforcer, interjecting in Scorpio's #1 Contender's match against ATM. The plot backfired as Vanna's efforts distracted Scorpio allowing him to be pinned.
By virtue of his victory, ATM earned a title shot at the 16th Anniversary in March. But who would be champion?
In the main event of New Year's Knockout, the competitive spirit of Jackie and Justice was on full display. There was no holding back as the two best friends gave everything they had to become the first ever Dual Champion. With the fans on their feet, the match of the year candidate ended with Jackie Lee victorious.
True to their vow, the men embraced and Scott handed Jackie his belt. "The Jet" made history, becoming the first, and only, man to hold the PCW Heavyweight & Canadian Championships simultaneously.
In the aftermath, Justice announced he was taking a much-deserved break.
Jackie proudly defended both championships, defeating James Beaver in February before being viciously attacked by Royce & ATM.
Although the London Dynasty had stolen Schink's PCW Tag Team Championship belts, he returned the favour, beating up both men and reclaiming possession of the gold.
Things continued to be bad for the Gentlemen's Club as Vanna lost again, this time to Jay Walker, who's return at the end of 2017 was met with increasing crowd adulation.
In March, PCW returned to Swan River, Manitoba the hometown of Alix Vanna, for "Giver, Giver!" The comforts of home must have done wonders as things suddenly turned around for the Gentlemen's Club in a history-making event!
The London Dynasty continued their 2018 winning streak by defeating Schink and partner Phil Deadly, to capture the PCW Tag Team Championship. Schink had been ordered by Commissioner Marxwell to select a partner for his tag team title defenses and Deadly was a worthy selection.
However, earlier in the evening Schink had faced Jay Walker in a Canadian Championship #1 Contender's match, a match Schink won. But you simply can't sleep on the London's who went into the match fresh...and came out champions!
The newsworthiness of "Giver, Giver!" continued as "Hotshot" Danny Duggan returned to PCW for the first time in a decade, facing the debuting "Tasty" Travis Cole! It would be the start of a great PCW career for Mr. Cole.
"Skyflyer" Jeff Tyler, the High Impact Wrestling Champion, was on-hand to face fellow HIW superstar Shaun Moore. The on-going talent exchange between HIW & PCW had led to many tremendous matches and this was no different, with Tyler securing the victory.
In the main event, Vanna experienced something rare - a standing ovation. His hometown crowd reacted to him like a conquering hero. And Vanna would need their support as he defended the NXW Championship against the "Legendary" Mentallo!
The match was an epic! They brawled all over the venue and traded moves & counter moves. Mentallo even power-bombed Vanna from the ring to the entrance ramp. He quickly followed it up with another, sending Vanna crashing through the staging and falling into a pit of broken wood and destruction.
The violence outraged the audience and Vanna's mother tried to attack Mentallo before being restrained by officials.
With the support of the capacity crowd, Vanna somehow managed to crawl out of the rubble and continue the match. Not only continue but excel as he defeated Mentallo and soaked in the adulation of his friends, family and supporters.
That night in Swan River, the Gentlemen's Club had truly turned a corner.
Later that month, PCW returned to Doubles Bar to celebrate an incredible 16 years as Manitoba's leader in Sports Entertainment! Commissioner Marxwell announced that following the event, the PCW Canadian Championship, which was held by PCW Heavyweight Champion Jackie Lee, would be vacated, regardless of the outcome of the night's main event of Jackie vs ATM.
The beloved Jay Walker, who had been fighting to put himself back into championship consideration, won a wild brawl when he defeated James Beaver in an I Quit match.
The Gentlemen's Club were almost unbearable in their celebratory arrogance, the London Dynasty the new PCW Tag Team Champions and Vanna coming off his impressive victory over Mentallo. Vanna explained that Scorpio may have been the Club Enforcer but he had not fully embraced what it meant to be a Gentlemen.
Scorpio entered the ring, showing off the results of his "Gentlemen's Makeover", adorned in glittery suspended, bow tie and top hat. He did not look amused, though the fans loved the look, including his new Beethoven-inspired music.
The make-over didnt help as Scorpio & Vanna lost to Mentallo & Travis Cole in tag team action, following a mis-cue. Post match, the two Gentlemen engaged in a heated argument and appeared ready to come to blows. But Commissioner Marxwell announced that next event, the vacant PCW Canadian Championship would be decided in a Triple Threat match - Schink vs Scorpio vs Vanna!
A huge smile crossed the lips of Vanna as he contemplated the Gentleman's Advantage in that one and he and Scorpio quickly patched up their differences.
The London Dynasty, undefeated in 2018 and sporting the PCW Tag Team Championship faced Bobby Schink and a partner of his choosing. In keeping with the spirit of the 16th Anniversary Spectacular, Schink said he was dipping into the legacy of PCW by choosing "Playboy" Will Damon!
Damon, a former PCW Tag Team & Heavyweight Champion entered to an enormous reception from the large crowd. He expressed his excitement at being there, pointing out he was in the main event of PCW's official launch in 2002, facing Eddie Guerrero and he was thrilled to be back for the 16th Anniversary to lend his support to the "future of PCW" Bobby Schink.
The London's were beside themselves at this development. They were still very angry after Damon and his MVP partner "Mecca" Shane Madison attacked them at the 15th Anniversary the previous year.
The shocking development seemed to rattle the champions and their impressive 2018 ran into a wall as Schink & Damon defeated them and captured the PCW Tag Team Championship!
In his final defense as the first ever Dual PCW Champion, Jackie defended the Heavyweight & Canadian titles against ATM, who had one chance to become the second ever dual champion before the Canadian title would be vacated.
It was another great match for both men who had been lighting 2018 on fire! The fans were, not surprisingly, solidly behind Jackie and against ATM, though there were several Team Impact fans in the building. It appeared the match would end with an unsatisfying Count Out but Commissioner Marxwell ordered the match to continue with no Count Outs and No Disqualification!
That allowed ATM's partner Robby Royce to interfere liberally, representing the gravest challenge to Jackie's championship of his career. As athletic, smooth and talented as the young "Jet" was, he had never faced an opponent as violent, aggressive and willing to do anything as ATM and Royce.
In fact, both members of Team Impact had routinely said Jackie was "soft" and didnt have the intestinal fortitude to carry a promotion as the top guy. They pushed Jackie to his limits, forced him to dig deeper than he ever had, to find a new gear.
And in the end, Jackie Lee beat them at their own came, putting ATM through a table, hitting the curb stomp and pinning him.
Not ones to go quietly, ATM super kicked PCW Founder Andrew Shallcross and Royce struck him with a chair, causing a huge gash on Shallcross' head. The Founder gushed blood as Royce and ATM continued their assault. Team Impact might have lost the battle, but the could claim victory in the war against PCW management.
Spring saw the brief coming together of two halves of former tag team champions, Mike McSugar and Dick Blood, known collectively as SugarDick! Though victorious at PCW's "Thunderstruck", it would be their only appearance together.
The London Dynasty once again challenged for the PCW Tag Team Championship, facing "Sweet" Bobby Schink and a partner of his choosing. While "Playboy" Will Damon had been Schink's partner when they won the title, Damon was officially retired. He was "one and done".
The London's demanded Schink defend the title by himself since he had previously been a "one man tag team champion", but guest General Manager James Korba allowed him to select a partner.
What happened next was the next chapter in what can only be described as "The Ballad of Leo & Ella".
It all began on May 26th 2017 when young Ella Blake made her in-ring debut in the Golden Ticket Premier Rumble. The inclusion of a woman in the match offended Leo who engaged with her physically. He could have eliminated her from the Rumble but to send a message, he gave her a pile driver before throwing her over the top rope. As he gloated, an incensed ringside fan, James Korba, entered the ring, grabbed Leo, and eliminated him before officials could swarm and restrain him.
Korba, as host of a local University radio wrestling show, disparaged Leo for his actions. When Leo accused Korba of using his show as a soap box to slander him, Korba invited him to appear live to discuss the matter on-air.
London agreed but it was all a ruse as he violently assaulted Korba at the UMFM studios. An injured Korba demanded an apology from PCW...or else.
Leo pointed out that while he had gotten physical with Ella Blake, it was in the context of professional wrestling and within the confines of a wrestling ring. It was Korba who trespassed in the ring and physically attacked him. Leo further pointed out that Korba never apologized to him, instead going on a public radio station to disparage him. London said the attack from behind and the verbal assault on UMFM were both "cowardly, but not surprising."
When Leo agreed to a live on-air debate, he explained, he had every reasonable expectation that it was a set up. His "assault" was a preemptive defense of himself from personal injury. He further said if Korba had a problem with that, he could face him like a man and not from behind.
In September 2017, Leo got his response. Michael James Arnott returned to PCW and announced he had been hired to represent Korba in any and all legal affairs. He revealed that shortly before the event, he had served PCW with a statement of claim and a list of demands including the immediate dismissal of Leo London, a 51% equity stake in the company, free admission in perpetuity and the installing of Arnott as Korba's proxy to manage his business interests.
Arnott explained that should PCW not agree to these demands, a lawsuit would be filed that would effectively bankrupt the company. "You can agree to our terms and PCW goes on or you can refuse and PCW ends forever."
It was a shocking development made even more stunning when Korba acknowledged it was true and that Michael Arnott spoke on his behalf.
Commissioner Marxwell expressed disappointment in Korba, reminding him that "you claim you love PCW, but you made it physical first, you made it personal first. And now you want to put PCW out of business?"
Korba was unrepentant as Marxwell continued "you started it....but I have to end it." With little choice but to comply, Marxwell agreed to the settlement demands.
But as Korba was about to sign the document himself, he had a change of heart, telling the crowd he would give up all of his demands in return for one thing. A match against Leo London.
Michael Arnott objected and attempted to convince Korba to discuss the matter privately. Korba refused, reiterating his willingness to trade his demands for a single match.
Marxwell quickly agreed and Arnott, clearly flabbergasted, stormed out.
In October 2017, Arnott appealed to Korba to reconsider. When he refused, Arnott exercised his right as legal representative to cancel the match but Korba fired him. The match went on as planned with Korba choosing Shao Ming & Bobby Schink as his partners.
Fast forward to February 2018 when Ella returned from her neck injury as the surprise partner of Phil Deadly to face the londons. While Ella enacted some brief revenge, her team was defeated. But her spirits were not.
That brings us back to this past April and Schink's choice for a partner to defend the PCW Tag Team Championship against the London Dynasty. He chose Ella!
Unfortunately, Schink & Ella underestimated the desire of the Gentlemen's Club to regain the gold and of Leo's desire for revenge. As Vanna appeared at ringside to assault Schink, Leo delivered two devastating pile drivers to Blake. As he and brother David set up for a spike pile driver, guest GM Korba threw in the towel, costing Schink the gold.
The London's had captured the PCW Tag Team Championship for a record-tying fourth time.
The Club was not finished there. In the night's main event, the now-vacant PCW Canadian Championship was to be decided in a Triple Threat match - Schink vs Vanna vs Scorpio.
Vanna's evil master plan appeared poised to come to fruition. Schink had already wrestled once and was battered from the contest (and Alix's earlier assault) and it was essentially two against one as Scorpio and Vanna were both members of the Gentlemen's Club.
But when the Club had assembled earlier in the evening, Scorpio was not among them. Vanna said not to worry, that Scorpio was merely running late but would be there and "knew his role."
Scorpio did show up and did focus his efforts on defeating Schink, while Vanna mostly observed from ringside. The veteran Scorpio overwhelmed the rookie Schink and had him nearly defeated when Vanna re-entered the match. The self-professed leader of the Gentlemen's Club ordered the so-called "Club Enforcer" Scorpio to "do the right thing and lay down" to be pinned by Vanna.
And finally, the moment the fans had long been waiting for, Scorpio re-discovered his fighting spirit. He gave Vanna a resounding "no" and told him if he wanted to be Canadian Champion, he had to "earn it". Scorpio struck him and hoisted him aloft for his patented Tombstone Piledriver, but before he could excute it, the London Dynasty hit the ring and attacked him.
Fans erupted with relief as Jackie Lee followed quickly behind. As he entered the ring, Vanna and the London's scattered to the floor. With Scorpio barely conscious, the battered Schink slowly rose to his feet....and was struck in the head with the PCW Championship belt by Jackie Lee!!
A collective gasp was heard and then silence as the crowd was stunned! Jackie "The Jet" Lee had betrayed their trust.
Jackie stood guard as Vanna slinked back into the ring, covered Schink and scored the pinfall to become the new PCW Candian Champion!
Jackie, Vanna & The London Dynasty held their belts high in the air as they celebrated to end the event.
Observant fans noticed a distinct limp to Jackie's gait and it was revealed following the event he suffered a fractured distal fibular earlier in the evening during his victorious match with Jay Walker.
On a night of surprises, perhaps the biggest - a public disagreement between Team Impact partners Robby Royce & ATM. After defeating the Seeds of Evil (EZ Ryder & Trent Nash), an angry Royce once again verbally blasted PCW, especially Founder Andrew Shallcross.
Shallcross reluctantly entered the ring and was attacked by Royce but a clearly annoyed ATM shoved him back and walked off.
Two weeks later PCW debuted in Oak Bluff, Manitoba, the hometown of Bobby Schink!
It was to be a true golden homecoming for Schink as he was scheduled to challenge Jackie Lee for the PCW Heavyweight Championship. But due to Jackie's injury, the match was off. Jackie appeared at the event in a wheel chair and said he was certain he could still beat him, but PCW would not allow it.
Instead, new PCW Canadian Champion Alix Vanna would defend, not that title, but the NXW Championship against Schink.
NXW was a PCW partner promotion and Vanna had been its champion since September 2016 when he, ironically, defeated Jackie for the title in Swan River.
Showing incredible athleticism, Jackie was able to interfere numerous times, even from a wheelchair. But when Schink recovered and choke slammed Jackie's "aid" JL Spiker, "The Jet" decided it was time to leave. Wheeling away as fast as he could was not fast enough as Schink super kicked him out of his wheel chair.
Back in the ring, Schink climbed a 15 foot ladder and executed a beautiful Oak Bluff Jam leg drop to Vanna to secure the victory and the NXW Championship!
A loss for the Club but not a complete one as the London Dynasty defended the PCW Tag Team Championship in a triple threat match against two legendary duos (and former PCW Tag Team Champions) - Team Impact & The Fabulous Creebirds! It marked the first appearance in PCW of Stefan Epic in over a decade!
These three iconic tandems counted twenty-two former PCW Tag Team Championships among all six men, an unbelievable statistic! The contest surpassed the hype but when the smoke cleared, the London's were victorious, adding another notch to their in-progress legacy. Though working together well, Royce & ATM bickered throughout the match.
Back at Doubles Bar, the new Gentlemen's Club had its official coming out party.
Michael James Arnott returned and announced he was the business manager for the most elite group in the business. And he said he would never again be disrespected as he introduced his personal security, Kevin O'Doyle.
One by one, he brought out the Club - the PCW Tag Team Champions Leo & David London, PCW Canadian Champion Alix Vanna and PCW Heavyweight Champion Jackie Lee. Four Gentlemen, Four Belts.
Vanna said Scorpio was the weak link and was never Gentlemen material and would never be a champion again.
ATM and Royce engaged in a verbal altercation. ATM said he came to PCW to win the Championship, just like he did in CWE. And he accused Royce of putting his personal desire to attack PCW and Founder Shallcross above their professional goals. Royce said he didn't care and was tired of carrying ATM on his back and had a new best friend anyway, Moses Luke! And to prove Moses was a better partner than ATM, Moses and Royce made quick work of JL Spiker & Alex Anthony.
ATM's renewed focus on his professional goals fell short when he was distracted by Royce at ringside and Jackie's interference and lost a PCW Canadian Championship match to Alix Vanna.
In the Golden Ticket Rumble '18, the entire Gentlemen's Club assembled throughout the contest and worked as a unified unit.
In the second last spot, Antonio Scorpio returned to a massive ovation. He hit the ring as the Club swarmed and quickly threw out both London Dynasty!
But they didn't stay out and all four Club members viciously attacked Scorpio and dismissed him from the Rumble. It came down to Vanna and Jay Walker with the fans completely on Walker's side. After several minutes of action, Jay eliminated Vanna to win the Golden Ticket!
It was the first Golden Ticket for Jay but he had been cashed in against twice previously, losing the PCW Canadian Championship both times.
A very historic moment occurred in April when CWE Heavyweight Champion Tyler Colton showed at PCW's "Thunderstruck" and confronted PCW Heavyweight Champion Jackie Lee. Colton noted they both claimed to be the best and there was only one way to find out - one on one, champion vs champion.
CWE Champion vs PCW Champion would undoubtedly be one of the most intriguing matches in Manitoba history, but fate intervened. Jackie suffered his fractured leg and Colton lost the CWE Championship to Danny Duggan.
Colton would return to PCW on Canada Day, making a successful appearance.
At that same event, JL Spiker upset Jay Walker & David London in a triple threat match, marking the big rookie's biggest victory to date. He followed that up with a convincing win over Travis Cole in September! He could be one to watch in 2019!
But the spirit of the challenge was taken up by AJ Sanchez & Kevin O'Doyle who captured the CWE Tag Team Championship and subsequently showed up at PCW's "Threat In Lorette II". They issued an open challenge to any PCW duo and were met by Bobby Schink & Jay Walker who earlier defeated Team Impact in a match neither Royce or ATM wanted but were contractually obligated to accept. Suffice to say, they did not get along.
Schink & Walker made a cohesive tandem but fell to the impressive Sanchez & ODoyle. To make matters worse, O'Doyle snuck into the Locker room following the show and and brutally beat Walker, leaving him unconscious.
Leo London once again demonstrated he might have an issue with women, as he took on "Outlaw" Adam Knight, but could not stop berating outside enforce Alison Fox. The feisty Fox was having none of it and shoved Leo who was immediately laid out by Knight for the victory.
In the main event, Schink won the 2nd Annual $25,000 Over the Top Rope Lorette Invitational Rumble. It was his 2nd such victory and is now undefeated in $25,000 Over The Top Rope Lorette Invitational Rumbles!
At the "Back to School Bash", ATM challenged Royce and Moses to a tag team match, choosing the suddenly hot JL Spiker as his partner. Fans were buzzing in anticipation of Royce & ATM finally locking up, but when ATM tagged in, he appeared to suffer a sudden knee injury and Spiker was double teamed and pinned.
Moses & Royce continued to beat on Spiker post-match until Darren "The Bomb" Dalton made the save. He reminded fans that he and Royce were the original Team Impact but Royce had stabbed him in the back years earlier when he replaced him with ATM. But now, Dalton was ready to stand with ATM and prove they were the "real Team Impact!".
Antonio Scorpio confronted the Gentlemen's Club, said "talk is cheap" and accused Jackie Lee of faking an injury that was long since healed. He challenged Jackie to face him like a man so he could win back "his" PCW Championship.
Before Jackie could reply, David London stepped between them and told Scorpio if he wanted Jackie, he had to get through him first. Leo said the same. As did Vanna. Scorpio surveyed the situation and quickly accepted.
But Michael Arnott interjected, saying Scorpio was nowhere near the top contender for the championship and as much as Jackie and the rest of the Club would like to lay a beating on him, Scorpio had to earn a title shot. Arnott suggested he face his personal security, O'Doyle. "If you can survive him, you can have your shot...at the entire Club!"
Arnott was seemingly over-confident as Scorpio forced the tough rookie to tap out. He was quickly surrounded, attacked and beaten down with Jackie delivering the coup de grace Curb Stomp, an amazing accomplishment for a man with a broken leg.
The London Dynasty continued their strong 2018 by defeating the newly-formed team of "Sweet & Tasty" - "Sweet" Bobby Schink & "Tasty" Travis Cole. Leo used a low blow and a running Tombstone to secure the victory. But even in defeat, the fans embraced Sweet & Tasty!
Before the match, Arnott presented Leo & David with brand new custom-made PCW Tag Team Championship belts!
The very talented Shaun Moore returned to PCW, this time as the HIW Grand Champion. Another historic moment in a year full of them, saw Moore face Vanna in a HIW vs PCW, Champion vs Champion match. They engaged in a thrilling contest with the crowd on the edge of their seats.
But as was becoming the norm, the Club marred the match with its untimely interference. They attacked Moore and Jackie delivered another Curb Stomp.
"Sweet & Tasty" made the save but the arrogant Gentlemen's Club challenged to a match right then and there. Sweet & Tasty gladly accepted because they had someone in the back who showed up unannounced and was dying to get their hands on Leo - Ella Blake!
The fans erupted and Leo was spitting mad. It was an electric Six Person match but the Club cheated throughout, putting their numbers advantage to good use. In-ring official Jordan Garber was knocked down, allowing Leo to do something unthinkable - he dug under the ring for production equipment, retrieving an Axe!
Wild with anger and seemingly out of his mind, Leo threatened to assault Blake with the axe. He raised it above his head, but James Korba grabbed it from behind. He had been watching from ringside as he always did, and could take no more. He kicked Leo low, allowing Blake to roll him up as a groggy Garber counted the three!
On October 19th, PCW presented "The One!" - the biggest event of the year as Kenny Omega returned home once again...and he wasn't alone.
The lead up to the event created some amazing facts. With scheduling being unknown until very late, PCW announced the show only 8 days in advance...and even then did not announce who would be taking part. Finally, just three days before the event, PCW revealed Kenny was returning home.
But tickets sold out in a matter of hours, the fastest sell-out in PCW history and the largest profit margin since March 2002. Truly historic accomplishments!
400+ Fans packed Doubles Bar and were impressed with a new entrance way, enhanced lighting and a very intriguing multiple camera set up.
ATM disappointed the capacity crowd by revealing he had torn ligaments in his knee and could not compete but had a duo ready, willing & able to face Royce & Moses - The Old School Wrecking Crew! The veteran tandem of Darren Dalton & Adam Knight entered to a heroes welcome!
The four men engaged in a wild fight but the emotional ATM tried to strike his former best friend Royce with his crutch, accidentally hitting Dalton. The end result was a DQ victory for the Crew, but it was a bitter result.
The Gentlemen's Club were not amused over the hype for Kenny Omega, claiming they were the heart & soul of PCW now and the most elite club in the business. While the London's tried to take the night off, Commissioner Marxwell ordered them to defend the PCW Tag Team Championship against the incredibly popular "Sweet & Tasty".
Fans were electric, sensing something positive and historic would happen. But they witnessed an unrepentant Alix Vanna attack Schink, striking him with the Canadian Championship belt, allowing him to be pinned.
Jay Walker returned seeking revenge on Kevin O'Doyle after the "Boston Bruiser" had assaulted him in Lorette. But Vanna once again ruined a great match, striking Walker with his belt, in a repeat performance of earlier, allowing O'Doyle to get the victory.
Vanna was systematically eliminating threats to his championship. But Commissioner Marxwell would not let it stand, ordering Vanna to defend the title against a still-groggy Bobby Schink in the main event.
Live event host "Filthy" Josh Hammerstein brought out special guest Ella Blake! He asked her what she thought of Leo London referring to himself as the "big man in PCW". She said there was "nothing big about Leo London", calling him a male chauvinist pig and challenging him to a one on one match!
Leo came out to respond and said Ella had it all wrong. He was not a male chauvinist, he was a male feminist. And the reason he had routinely attacked and belittled her was a public service to dissuade all the little girls who watch wrestling from wanting to follow in her footsteps because wrestling "was a man's world".
He told Ella, if they wrestled, he would beat her so bad, she'd "be begging to clean my house, make my dinner and satisfy my every sexual desire." But he wouldnt let her because he preferred "hot girls."
Ella rightfully slapped him. Leo shockingly slapped her back. But the tough Blake immediately took Leo down and began raining strikes upon him until officials separated them.
The moment everyone had been waiting for was next, "The One" that brought them all - Kenny Omega!
He entered with partner "Canadian Idol" Chris Stevens to an unprecedented reaction from the audience. The ovation lasted several minutes.
Their opponents, the duo named PCW's Greatest Tag Team of All Time, Mike Angels & Chat Tatum - Tag Sciences Faculty - entered wearing party hats. They revealed that it was Kenny's birthday and they wanted to celebrate. They noted Kenny's parents and legendary promoter Tony Condello were sitting at ringside.
They introduced one of Kenny's best friends, "Vicious" Donny Dicaprio, who entered with a custom birthday cake!
And in the biggest surprise of the night, they introduced the Executive Vice President of Impact Wrestling, Don Callis!
The audience was shocked but rose to their feet and serenaded Callis with resounding cheers. He told everyone he had just flown in for Kenny's birthday. Everyone began singing Happy Birthday but were interrupted by the London Dynasty.
They berated the fans for cheering for Kenny "who only shows up once a year" and supporting Tag Sciences Faculty "who dont even show up that often" while disrespecting people like them who are in PCW day in and day out giving it their all.
Callis addressed the London's as only he can, dressing them down so intensely as to elicit a "Quit The Business" chant from the audience directed at the PCW Tag Team Champions.
Callis went on to tell the story of how he met Omega, noted that he had trained Chris Stevens & Donny Dicaprio and how much influence he had. He said Kenny was now the biggest star in the world and it traced back to the day Don first give him a break in the business.
"And that was the worst day of my life!" Callis explained. As 400+ jaws dropped, Callis continued, saying Omega and The Young Bucks had "ruined the business". He said they made a mockery of it. Callis said Kenny's Uncle, the Golden Sheik, would be ashamed of him.
Don Callis then struck Kenny Omega in the head with the microphone. And suddenly the plan was revealed, as the London's attacked everyone at Callis' direction. They held Kenny prone for Callis to slap and berate.
And suddenly, the match was a Triple Threat!
A clear favorite for match of the year, broke down to a wild brawl. In a rare miscue, Stevens accidentally super kicked Omega who eventually fell face first into his own birthday cake. An irate Kenny told Stevens he was "a nice guy, but professionally, we're through".
Stevens claimed it was not his fault, saying "what idiot brings a cake to a birthday party?" He said he knew Kenny hated cake and thats why he had another surprise - 15 birthday pies!
Several officials carried out 15 pies to ringside. And the inevitable occurred. A knockdown, drag out, elite-level pie-throwing, cake-mashing food fight!
And finally...Omega delivered the One Winged Angel to Leo London through the remnants of the birthday cake for the pin.
Perhaps the most iconic, historic moment in PCW history.
The historic moments continued as Schink finally had his sweetest victory of all, in the main event. Though the Club attempted to interfere throughout, Travis Cole, Jay Walker & Ella Blake ran them off. Schink delivered "Sweet Schink Music" and scored the pin, defeating Vanna and capturing the Canadian Championship!
The Gentlemen's Gauntlet was set for PCW's "Hellbound" in November. Scorpio was now recovered from his injuries sustained at the hands of the Club and was ready to run the gauntlet to get a shot at Jackie Lee and the PCW Heavyweight Championship.
"Hellbound" also saw Robby Royce & Moses Luke face The Old School Wrecking Crew and the revelation of a disgusting ruse. During the match, ATM, seemingly on crutches due to a torn knee ligament, laid out Dalton. He began doing jumping jacks before hitting Knight with his crutch.
The injury, the split with Royce...it was some sick game, orchestrated by Team Impact! It allowed Royce & Moses to claim victory but it left the fans utterly furious.
The intense feud between Jay Walker & Kevin O'Doyle came to a head in an insane Casket Match! No less than three caskets were carried or wheeled out to ringside for this one. It was a wild brawl from beginning to end.
No one has ever questioned the heart of Jay Walker and, even in a losing cause, he might have elevated himself in the minds of the fans. He went to war in this one and came within milimeters of closing the lid on the 400lb O'Doyle.
The "Boston Bruiser" missed a precarious second rope splash and Walker appeared poised for a huge victory...until Vanna attacked. The self-professed "straw that stirs the drink" interjected to perhaps alter the course of history once again, brutalizing Jay with a steel chair. That made him easy pickings for O'Doyle to roll into the casket and slam the lid shut.
Jay Walker would not be seen again in 2018.
One of the most unique scenario's unfolded at "Hellbound" as Antonio Scorpio took part in the "Gentlemen's Gauntlet". So protective of their man Jackie Lee, and his PCW Heavyweight Championship, The London Dynasty & Alix Vanna had vowed that Scorpio would have go through them to get his hands on "The Jet".
Scorpio agreed, setting the stage for a seemingly insurmountable challenge, but creating the opportunity for an historic career moment.
It was four-and-a-half years since Scorpio had worn the PCW Heavyweight Championship. His victory, coming at the 10th Anniversary Spectacular in 2012 saw Scorpio reign triumphant over PCW for 730 days, the 2nd longest title reign in company history. When he lost the championship exactly two years later, at the 12th Anniversary Spectacular, it was via Golden Ticket Cash In.
Scorpio had just put forth his greatest career performance, pinning Kenny Omega in of the best matches of all time, when he was ambushed by The Old School Outlaws - Adam Knight & Steve Corino. Corino cashed in the Golden Ticket, in the process betraying his own partner Knight, to capture the gold and take it home to South Carolina.
The defeat was so crushing, so disappointing and such a tremendous low following immediately after the incredible high of beating Omega, that it seemed to change Scorpio deep inside.
He disappeared for six months, returning in September 2014 to face young upstart Jackie Lee. The odds were decidedly on Scorpio's side against the Lance Storm Academy Graduate but the tremendous contest went to a draw. A career-defining moment for "The Jet", but a whisper of self-doubt for the veteran Scorpio.
He returned in 2015 to battle AJ Sanchez, but when the PCW Heavyweight Championship was declared vacant, Scorpio was given the opportunity to regain what he felt he never really lost. In a match for the ages, Scorpio was unsuccessful against Sanchez, Mentallo & Omega to crown a new champion.
Fate soon interceded, as new champ Sanchez was seriously injured in a car accident, necessitating a tournament to crown a successor. It came down to Scorpio vs Jackie Lee, the veteran with something to prove vs the young man with the whole world in front of him.
Scorpio appeared to be rejuvenated as he won the first of a three match contest, defeating Jackie in July 2015. Jackie kept himself in the hunt with an inspired victory in match two in August. And finally, at the 14th Annual "Back to School Bash", Jackie Lee embraced his destiny with a victory over Scorpio to win his first PCW Heavyweight Championship.
Scorpio ended that year losing a tag team match and he must have wondered if his career had peaked.
Had it been so, no one would have looked down on him. A homegrown superstar, PCW had trained with and graduated from the promotions' wrestling academy. He won two Canadian Championships, a Junior Championship & three Tag Team Championships to go along with his 730 day Heavyweight Championship reign. Cemented forever in history as one of PCW's greatest, Scorpio had nothing to prove...other than to himself.
He spent most of 2016 embroiled in a lengthy losing streak and then a feud with Zack Mercury which started in summer and didnt end until January of 2017 when Scorpio beat him in a Loser Leaves Town match. He followed that up by defeating AJ Sanchez & Mentallo in a Triple Threat Match and moving into contention for the Canadian Championship.
That put him at odds with Alix Vanna & The Gentlemen's Club.
Utilizing their vast numbers advantage, Vanna defeated Scorpio in three straight matches before frustration took over. Telling the fans in July 2017 that "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em", Scorpio became the Club's enforcer, taking out anyone who posed a threat to Vanna.
That brought us to 2018 and the sordid drama that played out most of the year. As it became clear that Vanna & The Club were using Scorpio for their own dirty work, four years of frustration and self-doubt finally boiled over. Scorpio would not...could not, just lay down on command for Alix Vanna.
That decision turned the full power of the Gentlemen's Club, now including Jackie Lee, against him. It was just the challenge Scorpio needed.
After recovering from injuries sustained at the hands of the Club in September, Scorpio returned for "Hellbound" in the best shape of his life. Ripped to shreds and faster & more agile, it appeared he trained specifically for the momentous challenge that Jackie Lee represented.
With Leo London absent due to "unforeseen circumstances", the "Gentlemen's Gauntlet" was down to three participants...an impossible obstacle for most men. But Scorpio started off by beating David London in convincing fashion. He was given no time to rest as Alix Vanna immediately attacked him.
The Club plan was clear - to physically eliminate Scorpio. The match with Vanna turned into a farce as the Club attacked and brutally assaulted Scorpio. Technically, it was a disqualification victory for Antonio, but after being Tombstone'd - an effort to humiliate him with his own maneuver, he was carried from the ring, barely conscious, and rushed to a local hospital.
In the main event, the Club accompanied Jackie Lee to the ring. The PCW Heavyweight Champion gloated over his 4 year dominance of Scorpio and celebrated the fact he had been champion for more than 1000 days combined. His current reign was 3rd All Time and "The Jet" said, with Scorpio in forced retirement, he'd beat his longevity mark too.
Suddenly, ring announcer Josh Hammerstein was informed Scorpio had checked himself out of the hospital and was en route to the venue. Frantically, Club business manager Michael Arnott demanded the referee start the match and count Scorpio out.
As the official's count near'ed ten, the music hit and Antonio appeared. Clearly not 100%, he was wearing a neck brace and hospital gown. As Club member's rushed him, Scorpio dropped them all and set his sights on the champion - Jackie Lee.
Though he was a full fledged member of the Gentlemen's Club, Jackie was not one to shy away from a fight. With his previous victories in mind, he met Scorpio head-on and with confidence. It was an easy match of the year candidate, fought with intensity, speed, agility and an inspiring determination to win by both men.
But as always, if you fight one Club member, you fight them all. David & Vanna returned to interject but were met by Sweet & Tasty who ran them off.
Leaving just the two incredible combatants alone in the ring, Scorpio took control, countered a Curb Stomp and delivered a Tombstone to secure the victory, regain the PCW Heavyweight Championship and once again take his place atop the mountain.
Post match, both men shook hands and expressed mutual respect.
To close out 2018, Scorpio completed the Gauntlet, defeating Leo London at "Season's Beatings". It was an eye-opening effort by Leo who proved himself a worthy singles challenger.
The year also ended with a new contender and a sinister new threat.
The new threat comes in the form of the "American Psycho" JL Spiker. The previously unassuming rookie made a splash when he introduced Dr. Marty Gold as his spokesperson and renounced his Canadian Citizenship, intending to seek Asylum in the United States.
The contender, ATM, won a Christmas Wish Battle Royale to earn a title show against Antonio Scorpio at New Years Knockout! 2019. That's deja vu as ATM defeated Scorpio at the 2018 New years Knockout! If history repeats itself, we'll kick off the new year with a new champion.
The Ballad of Leo & Ella continued as Michael Arnott, claiming to be a nationally ranked elementary school amateur wrestler, challenged her to a match. Arnott said he was doing Blake a favour by letting her lose to him rather then risk her health by facing Leo.
In 2018, Premier Championship Wrestling expressed many twists, turns, returns, debuts and title changes.
The PCW Heavyweight Championship began the year around the waist of Jackie Lee but ended the year with Antonio Scorpio by virtue of his victory at "Hellbound", November 3rd, 2018.
The PCW Canadian Championship also began 2018 in the possession of Jackie Lee, an historic accomplishment as the first man to ever hold both titles simultaneously. PCW declared the championship vacant and it was subsequently won by Alix Vanna on April 28th, 2018 when he defeated Scorpio & Schink. But on October 19th, 2018, Schink won his first PCW Canadian Championship by defeating Vanna at "The One".
The PCW Tag Team Championship belonged to Bobby Schink to begin the year, another historic development as he became the only One Man Tag Team Champion of all time. He lost the gold to the London Dynasty on March 10th, but regained the belts with partner Will Damon two weeks later. On April 28th, the London's regained the PCW Tag Team Championship for a record-tying fourth time and have held them ever since.
Though there was much to celebrate in 2018, PCW and the entire wrestling community was struck by tragedy as Senior Official "Eagle Eyed" Lenny Travis passed away far too young. Rest in Peace, Lenny!