According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the NWA is planning to start a 16-man tournament on the 2nd June, to run through to early September, to crown their new World Heavyweight Champion. The biggest names involved will be Bryan Danielson, BJ Whitmer, Claudio Castagnoli and Adam Pearce, along with non-ROH guys like Damien Wayne. A DVD, Reclaiming the Glory: NWA World Title Tournament, will be distributed nationally by Big Vision Entertainment.
ROH and the NWA have reached an agreement of sorts in which Danielson, should he in fact wind up as champion, could defend the title on NWA shows if they did not clash with ROH bookings. It is unclear whether or not ROH would recognise him as NWA champion on their shows as the ROH PPV deal has changed the dynamic of the promotion. The ROH contracts prohibited their wrestler from working for TNA or WWE, appearing on another company’s PPV or wrestling on MTV but they are allowed to appear on DVDs and TV for other promotions.
Big Vision were behind WSX and will distribute NWA DVDs as they attempt to emulate the ROH business model. They are also in preliminary discussions about getting exposure on the Dish Network and hope to set up PPV or VOD in the future.
The NWA’s biggest member promotion is likely to be the Inoki Genome Federation, run by Antonio and Simon Inoki, which debuts on the 29th June at the Sumo Hall. The Inokis hold the NWA membership for Japan, previously held by them in NJPW, with which they were associated until recently. The Inokis are trying to book Kurt Angle vs Brock Lesnar for their first show but nothing has been finalised. They want Angle to beat Lesnar and claim he is the real IWGP champion, since Lesnar himself never lost the title and still has the belt. NJPW do own the IWGP name but Antonio Inoki feels that his name and standing are such that nobody would challenge him over it. This is called stupidity. Angle is under the impression that he is going to get whatever singles title they do end up with, and has been confirmed as appearing by TNA.
Also, the NWA is thinking of a one-night, four-team tournament to crown NWA World Tag Team Champions at the IGF show. The names mentioned so far are Andy Douglas & Chase Stevens, Incognito & El Sicodelico Jr, Karl Anderson & Joey Ryan, and a Japanese team of Inoki’s choosing.
Credit: Wrestling Observer Newsletter, 21st May 2007 (click here for subscription information)