REVIEW: National Wrestling Alliance – Hard Times 2 (2021)

A Pay-Per-View event by The National Wrestling Alliance

It’s been a while since NWA 73 and EmPowerrr, so I was kind if itching to see the NWA put another show on at some point. I know they did a show a few months ago, but it acted almost like a TV taping and was not made for the PPV market. NWA has really done great post-pandemic. After almost shuttering, and losing basically all of their main roster folks due to literally having no show to be on due to Covid-19 restrictions, I assumed they were going to go under. Thankfully that was not the case.

This show marks perhaps the biggest title challenge for Trevor Murdock’s NWA Heavyweight title to date, hopefully he makes it out the other side as champ! Time to see how this show stacks up against previous shows, I’m sure it will be great!

For anyone wanting to watch this, I would recommend Fite.TV. you can get some FITE credits (10 dollars I believe) with the following code: “6m6lyyn”. I’m sure there are other ways to watch it, but FITE has a solid interface and has been worth it so far. I signed up for the monthly membership to keep up with ROH and some indy feds on there, so far I love it! Your 10 dollars in Fite credits would make this show free!!

The Card:

  • 1P Mims (with Crimson) defeated Jax Dane Singles match
  • 2P The Hex (Allysin Kay and Marti Belle) (c) defeated Kylie Rae and Tootie Lynn, Missa Kate and Natalia Markova & Jennacide and Paola Blaze Four-way tag team match for the NWA World Women’s Tag Team Championship
  • 3P Homicide defeated Alex Taylor, Ariya Daivari, CW Anderson, Jamie Stanley, Jeremiah Plunkett, Kerry Morton, Luke Hawx, PJ Hawx, Ricky Morton, Sal Rinauro, and Victor Benjamin NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship qualifying gauntlet match
  • 4 Austin Aries defeated Rhett Titus NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship qualifying match
  • 5 The OGK (Matt Taven and Mike Bennett) (c) defeated Aron Stevens and JR Kratos Tag team match for the ROH World Tag Team Championship
  • 6 Colby Corino defeated Doug Williams Singles match
  • 7 Mickie James (c) defeated Kiera Hogan Singles match for the Impact Knockouts Championship
  • 8 Tyrus (c) (with Austin Idol) defeated Cyon No Disqualification match for the NWA World Television Championship with The Pope as special guest referee No Time Limit
  • 9 Chris Adonis (c) defeated Judais (with Father James Mitchell) Singles match for the NWA National Championship
  • 10 La Rebelión (Bestia 666 and Mecha Wolf 450) (c) defeated The End (Odinson and Parrow) Tag team match for the NWA World Tag Team Championship
  • 11 Nick Aldis defeated Thom Latimer Grudge match No accompaniments at ringside, If either man is disqualified, they will be suspended for 8 weeks
  • 12 Kamille (c) defeated Melina Singles match for the NWA World Women’s Championship
  • 13 Trevor Murdoch (c) defeated Mike Knox Singles match for the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship

Don’t forget, the preshow is Free on Youtube!

My Thoughts:

As I’ve stated before, my methodology for this is to avoid giving arbitrary star ratings or anything. I usually go through the show and pull a half-dozen or so things that I thought were significant or that I liked. You might think some of my choices are dumb and that’s okay – we all like different things!

Tribute to Jazz

Jazz is a wrestler that gets next to no credit for her illustrious career simply because she wasn’t a woman with supermodel looks when she was at her most prominent. She kicked ass, took names, and made herself into one of the most formidable foes that anyone would have the misfortune of coming into contact with. Impact honored her a while back, and now NWA and Billy Corgan have made an effort to do the same, seeing that she recently completed her “farewell tour” and has retired. She thanked ECW and WWE as well as the NWA for allowing her to take a mentorship role in the company. Now if WWE would put her in their Hall of Fame, everything would be solid. It was also cool to see Rodney Mack again, glad to see they’re still together.

Forbidden Door

This show showed a lot of cooperation between NWA and Ring on Honor as well as a bit of talent from AEW and Impact Wrestling. The very first match, for instance, is a match between Austin Aries and ROH’s Rhett Titus, and as you would expect – it was a banger. We also have Kratos and Stevens vs OGK and Mickie James vs Keira Hogan. I love how NWA grabs talent that may not be huge in other feds, but gives them the “red carpet treatment” they deserve.

Speaking of Austin Aries, I can’t say I’m too excited to see him in NWA, because despite his amazing in-ring ability the dude is a cancer on social media and rivals Jim Cornette for having bad takes on just about everything. He also has a history of taking advantage of promoters, something I assumed got him blacklisted- but I guess not. Hat’s off to NWA for giving him a shot, but hopefully he doesn’t decide to no-show a big event because he didn’t get his way or something.

Welcome Back Doug Williams

Doug Williams was always one of those guys in TNA Wrestling that gave a different splash of style to his matches, and won me over as a fan simply because of how great he was. He’s been in the UK for about ten years now, but it appears that, nearing 50 years of age, he’s ready for one last go for an American Company. Hopefully he sticks around, as I’d love to see him and Nick Aldis re-unite as The British Invasion.

Saint Mick Appears!

I’m a huge Mick Foley mark, so I’m honestly excited when he does just about anything. He wasn’t just there to spread holiday cheer, but to remind everyone why the show is called “Hard Times”. Channeling the legendary Dusty Rhodes and talking about his past NWA adventures, it was a solid promo from Mrs. Foley’s Baby Boy.

La Rebelion does it again

Being a big fan of Bestia 666, and loving Mecha Wolf more and more each time I see him, means I was excited for this match against The End for the NWA Tag Team Championships. It was your classic mismatch with Parrow and Odinson being much larger and stronger, but the agility of the luchadores meant the difference in the match. Solid match! Plus Mecha Wolf’s King Diamond make-up was awesome.

The Main Event

If you had told me last year that Mike Knox would have been on a major promotion in the main event in 2021 I would have been very surprised, but here we are and NWA pulled it off. I’m a Trevor Murdock fan due to him being somewhat local and repping my local wrestling hero, Harley Race. When he won the belt, it was pretty exciting, but this could be his biggest challenge to date, seeing that Knox made everything personal attacking his family. Murdock wins and a new challenger appears – Matt Cardona? The next big show ought to be great!

Conclusion:

Another solid event put on by the NWA, full of surprises and great wrestling. It seems they get better every show, and I wish I could keep up with them more (now that their weekly isn’t free). Being a fan of Cardona, means I’m pretty excited to see what he does in the NWA, and who’s path he crosses. I will definitely be getting the next show!

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