By Brian Kelley
It was now or never for the Puerto Rican star Ricky Cruz to overcome the most dominate champion in recent memory in Ron Powers on May 19, 2012 The title on the poster stated it all, “Ricky’s last chance” with a picture of the champ Powers in a white t-shirt blazoned with Cruz’s blood during a match last year and a photo of the fan favorite Ricky Cruz.
To make the stakes even higher on this evening was presence of WWE HOF and an important member of the WWE as a talent scout, Gerry Brisco was in the house along with his son Wes Brisco.
Another historic evening for SICW as they celebrated 53 Years of Wrestling at the Chase in a packed house with fans young and old, waiting to see a legend in Gerry Brisco and if by the chance Cruz would be able to walk out with the CWC title.
We got there early filled with excitement on not only the Cruz-Powers match but a chance to see the second generation superstar Wes Brisco take on Sean Vincent. I was so excited that as the doors opened from promoter Herb Simmon’s wife Mickey that when I received a text from SICW ring announcer Jeff Vernetti asking if we were already passing out his brand new MWR Trading card # 74? OOPS. Quickly I got with MWR DIVA Dubray who went to pass out to the fans that had already paid their free Vernetti MWR Trading card.
The first 100 fans were able to get a FREE MWR Jeff Vernetti trading card- Photo Credit Brian Kelley
Almost forty years to the date St Louis wrestling promoter Sam Muchnick presented a new NWA World title belt to the winner of the Harley Race and Gerry Brisco’s late brother Jack Brisco. In an exciting announcement Herb Simmon’s started the night off with presenting Powers with brand new shiny CWC title.
Promoter Herb Simmons stated he didnt approve of Ron Powers and his reign of terror but respected his talent. On this great night a new CWC title was presented to the winner of the main event between the champ and Ricky Cruz.- Photo Credit Brian Kelley
Power’s stated that “It was time that he would have a title belt worthy of him to carry to the ring unlike one that was made at the local Home Depot”. Race would start the night off as the NWA Champ, but when the dust settled it would be Gerry’s brother Jack taking home the brand new belt.
Could history repeat itself?
oh no for Lockdown Tony Raze as Dan Walsh was ready just in time- Photo Credit Brian Kelley
After an exciting contest that saw the crowd celebrate as Dan Walsh & LaMarcus Clinton defeated Max Archer & Tony Raze when LMC pinned Archer after the Macho Elbow the first Chase moment happened. Former Wrestling at the Chase announcer Larry Matysik interviewed Gerry Brisco in front of the fans.
Wrestling at the Chase announcer Larry Matysik had called many of matches of Gerry and his late brother Jack in the past. Here they smile and take the fans down memory lane- Photo credit Brian Kelley
A special moment was captured when Herb Simmons surprised Brisco with an old adversary on the telephone in last year’s special guest Dory Funk JR.
During the intermission my friend ICON showed off the painting of one of the exciting new MWR Trading cards, Ring of Honor tag team “The All Night Express” Rhett Titus and Kenny King that will be used for MWR trading card number 80.
In a co-main event the before mention second generation superstar Wes Brisco a former WWE developmental star would be taking on the newly fan favorite Sean Vincent. Vincent a former stooge of Powers had recently broken away from the stable after becoming jaded with the addition of The Big Texan and Waco.
The month before Vincent lost a close matchup for the number one contender ship against Ricky Cruz for the chance to take on his former leader Ron Powers for the title. Still an opportunity to wrestle a man who many feel is a star in the making in Wes Brisco in front of his father Gerry Brisco a WWE scout is a dream for any talented wrestler in the Midwest would welcome on any day.
Sean Vincent takes it to Wes Brisco- Photo Credit Brian Kelley
Sean Vincent screams in pain- Photo Credit Brian Kelley
While Brisco has the namesake, Vincent has earned the respect of MWR with many great matches throughout the years. Brisco would explode at times only to see Vincent slow it down to take advantage in a battle between two of the very best. With the fans screaming for the figure four, Brisco tried to provide the fans with their wish but Vincent kicked out the first time but with sheer tenacity Brisco locked on the figure four in the middle of the ring. Vincent fought, screamed, and struggled to get out, or to reach the ropes with no hope at all. Moments later Vincent tapped as Brisco picked up the victory.
Out of respect the young Brisco offered his hand to the frustrated Canadian Hero Sean Vincent. Disappointed and upset, Vincent would share the respect to the second generation star. Moments later Vincent and Brisco would be joined in the ring by Brisco’s father who showed the utmost respect to Vincent by getting into the ring to raise the hands of both men.
Gerry Brisco respects his sons’ opponent Wes Brisco, the Canadian Hero Sean Vincent even in a loss. – Photo credit Brian Kelley
The time was here that everyone was waiting for, the main event.
Could Cruz defeat Powers?
If not could anyone in the Midwest stop the monster?
As Powers entered the ring it was obvious that Cruz would not only have to pin the champ but watch his back as the masked men The Big Texan and Waco came to ringside to wreck havoc throughout the match.
Last instructions from promoter Herb Simmons to special referee in the biggest match in the history of SICW. – Photo credit Brian Kelley
Special Referee for the night was none other than Gorgeous Gary Jackson, a man who has been eyeing the title for some time now but with the animosity between these two at an all-time high, there had to be a man that was able to control the madness that look to be involved in this match.
Gary Jackson lays down the law to both Powers and Cruz.- Photo credit Brian Kelley
With the crowd soundly behind Cruz with Lets go Ricky chants echoing the packed building; Powers looked to take them out of the match as he threw Cruz to the concrete floors. While Powers distracted the referee the opportunity arouse for Waco and Texan to put the boots to the young star. At one point two of the biggest fans in the front row grew so upset that there was a three on one advantage that they left the show in disgust telling one of the security men that it wasn’t right and they were leaving.
These two ladies were so furious over the fact that Waco and the Big Texan continued to cheat to lay out Ricky Cruz they would leave before the end of the match…..To their credit they tried to protect Cruz by throwing their hotdog wrapper at Waco. -Photo credit Brian Kelley
Moments later Jackson had enough of the cheating and ejected the masked duo from ringside. Yet as Jackson made sure that they left the ring, that gave Powers a chance to pull out a steal chain out of his gear and wrap it around his knuckles. As Cruz came towards Powers unaware of the danger ahead, Power struck with a vicious blow that dropped Cruz like a rock.
Powers had a secret weapon with a steel chain wrapped around his already powerful fist, amazingly Cruz was able to recover.-Photo credit Brian Kelley
Powers looked to have ended Cruz’s quest at the CWC title with one shot, as Jackson counted one –two- thr——-Cruz was able to barly kick out thus giving the fans and himself hope. Still Cruz was wearing down from the brute strength of the champ. Yet, Cruz is no rookie and has a heart of a champion and as Powers argued with Jackson it gave himself a chance to regain himself and strike with a superkick on the champ. The fans came to their feet as Cruz went for the pinfall but the champ kicked out.
The Champ continued the heat on Cruz.-Photo credit Brian Kelley
Cruz can brawl with the best of them but is truly a multi skilled wrestler who can submit his opponent at any time during a match…Here he lays into Powers who was in deep trouble reaching for the ropes in desperation.-Photo credit Brian Kelley
Blow after blow the action went back and forth between two of the top wrestlers in the country. Powers nailed a patented piledriver and I was sure it was all but done but somehow, someway Ricky Cruz was able to survive.
Leg strength like tank, Powers was able to withstand one but no way could he survive a second one from the Puerto Rican star as seconds later we had as Cruz would become the third CWC Champion .-Photo credit Brian Kelley
Then it happened Powers set up a second piledriver, but Cruz reversed out of the maneuver and delivered a second superkick to finally defeat Powers for the title!
NEW CHAMP NEW CHAMP NEW CHAMP
Ricky Cruz had done it!!!!
As the crowd came to their feet and the building shook with excitement and cheers, the WWE HOF Gerry Brisco came to the ring to strap on the title around Ricky Cruz’s waist just as Muchnick had done for his brother Jack nearly forty years ago when he defeated Race for the NWA World Championship.
In 2011 Ron Powers were one step ahead of Cruz but a new day has dawn in the Midwest as Gerry Brisco raises the hand of the new champ.-Photo credit Brian Kelley
History was made, Ricky Cruz had done the unthinkable and defeated Ron Powers for the CWC title.
I leave you with final words from the champ Ricky Cruz as he spoke to the fans on that night.
“I want you to know that even though Puerto Rico is my home country and my first love, that I want to thank each and everyone of you for your support. I love you and American, thank you so much”- Ricky Cruz.
SICW returns on 6/16/2012 MMWA-SICW East Carondelet Illinois 823 State St East Carondelet. Il 62240 –$9 Doors at 7 PM; Bell Time at 8 PM.