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    Monday, June 19, 2017

    Conflicts of Interest: #TeamJacket vs. The Network

    Bad news: the PHX and PWR Tag Team Championships will not be on the line at this year's edition of PWR Renaissance.

    Good news: What the show lacks in number of championship bouts, it will more than make up with fireworks and interesting championship implications when the millennial alliance of Ken Warren and the first-ever PWR Tag Team Champions, the YOLO Twins Yohann & Logan Ollores, take on the Network trio of James "Idol" Martinez, "Mr. Financially Stable" Alexander Belmonte III, and the PHX Champion "The Golden Boy" Chino Guinto. To say that this six-man is a powder keg waiting to explode is quite the understatement, especially considering the various circumstances leading up to this six-man war.

    Desperate Times, Desperate Measures

    When Ken Warren made his return to PWR, there were many questions lingering: What is next for the former PHX Champion? Where does he stand in a PWR with a landscape changed entirely? Can he still hang with the best? And what will he have to do to reach the top of the mountain again?

    It seems as though the answer to that was turn to a pair of like-minded and successful millennials.

    At Wrevolution X, the YOLO Twins interfered in Warren's match against the Heart and Soul of PWR, Bombay Suarez, allowing the Social Media Sinister to hit Bombay with an unprecedented flaming low blow.

    In turn, the Twins got an assist from Warren in the three-way match later in the night that included the Fighters 4 Hire and the Deadly Sinns to become the first tag champions in PWR history. In was at that point that the inevitable happened: fellow talented millennials deciding to form a faction to protect each other's interests.

    The arrangement seemed simple enough: KenWa watches the Twins' back as far as the PWR Tag Team Championships are concerned, and the Twins likewise "support" the master of the Wi-Fi in his quest to become the first two-time PHX Champion.

    Of course, this made Chino Guinto a target of #TeamJacket (much easier to type, honestly). And if you're The Golden Boy, that's the last thing you'd need in what was already a hectic number of months.

    But don't let Warren hear any suggestions that he, as the only gold-less member on the team, is the weak link in this deadly alliance, as some analysts have asserted.

    "Who called me the 'weak link?' he bristled, when told of this assertion. "Tell that keyboard warrior to tag me online—that's @thekenwarren on Twitter—like a real man. Unless he's just another dummy account that's papansin and craves my attention. LOL #Mema"

    And with the imminent fireworks this Sunday at Renaissance, Warren seems hell-bent on igniting a flame war against their green-garbed foes.

    "James 'Idol' Martinez is a great leader of The Network. Reminds me of a young me," he confessed. "But AB3 is, well, just third best in the Network, as you could figure from his name. Mel from HR is nothing but a dummy account in my book. And of course, the Revo-Nation's 'beloved' PHX Champion "Golden Boy" suck-up himself is doing a mediocre job at carrying the legacy of the PHX Championship that I started. But what else did you expect? He's just second best and just another follower to a leader like Idol. Unlike the YOLO Twins and myself, we're all equals. #THAT"

    Networked From Within

    Things within the Network camp are anything but stable right now, and we ain't talking about finances.

    For months, animosity has been the recurring theme when it comes to the relationship between Idol and Chino, stemming from the accidental pin that occurred during the Path of Gold match earlier in the year.

    Since then, Idol has exerted his authority as the Top of the Pyramid on Chino, including a suspension from one PWR show. While Chino pleaded with Idol to keep peace within the Network, the #BLESSED One nonetheless garnered much support and sympathy from the fans. That support, alongside his in-ring talents, led him to win the PHX Championship in a four-way match at Wrevolution X, further angering the man Chino eloquently calls "James" in recent days. To make matters worse, Idol seemed to have shown an interest for the PHX Championship on numerous times, causing further tension in the ranks.

    As if that ain't enough, Idol has also made AB3 a punching bag of sorts, mistreating the Network enforcer for weeks. All the abuse eventually led to AB3 showing signs of frustration, to the point that he didn't help out his boss when he needed it at PWR Live: Resbak.

    Despite the internal issues, it seemed as though when the going gets tough, the Network sticks together, evidenced by Idol and AB3 saving Chino from a post-match assault from #TeamJacket—even calling an army of downlines to send a message.

    Nonetheless, there is still a sense of animosity within the Network, and perhaps this match could be the solution to their internal struggles.

    Despite the current issues, Idol's mind seems focused on winning, and as far as strategy goes, strategy's secured deep within the genius mind of the Network head.

    "Why would I tell you my strategy?" said James Martinez during a recent sit down meeting with all three Network members. "Those social media junkies would definitely know, and then what? They'll counter it and we'll lose?"

    Certainly a man of action, but at the end of the day, he has bigger problems to tackle head on, if he had it his way.

    "To be honest, I'm more interested on taking on our ongoing internal issues than taking on those spoiled millennials," Idol concluded in a brief statement when asked on the Network's internal problems.

    The Golden Boy was quick to respond.

    "Here we go again with the usual BS. Sorry, the only way we're winning is if a certain someone keeps his ego in check. I mean, come on! For once, will you think about the benefit of everyone?" Chino immediately reacted to the statement. "If it's anything in-ring, you know The Golden Boy will bring it."

    He did leave us with a short and sweet ending note.

    "P.S. I'm just waiting for Idol to apologize."

    Idol did not hold back when asked to reply.

    "You're asked about your strategy for our incoming match. Stop slinging mud at your allies," Idol said, raising his voice. "P.S. Don't leave your valuables unattended."

    The PHX Champ then had to bring up the elephant in the room, turning his attention to the third man in the Network mancom.

    "Seriously, AB3, you're just gonna sit there and not say anything? All I'm asking is for you to man up and talk to me like the adult that you are and not go around staking a claim on what isn't yours."

    After opting to keep silent for a while, AB3 finally had enough and said his piece.

    "We can beat those millennials. I just hope both of you get along. I just want what's best for the team, and that's to win," AB3 said simply.

    The tension evident in the room, Chino had enough and ended the interview with a simple statement.

    "'Yoko na, walk out na ko."

    Yup, things are probably gonna go really well for them this Sunday.


    As it stands, while this is going to end up as a competitive and explosive encounter, you cannot deny that a unified front will always overcome a faction struggling from within. That may very well be the deciding factor in the match, and #TeamJacket would end up getting a win over the longest lasting faction in PWR.

    Or this could very well explode in Chino Guinto's face, with all five men end up beating the living hell out of him. Who knows, right?

    No matter what happens, this match could determine the championship scene in PWR in the near future.


    PWR Renaissance 2017 is happening on Sunday, June 25, at Playland in Fisher Mall, Quezon City. Doors open at 2 PM. Stay tuned for official announcements on the Facebook event page regarding ticket availability, pricing, and details.

    Photos courtesy of "Half-Man, Half-Amazing" Hub Pacheco.
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    Item Reviewed: Conflicts of Interest: #TeamJacket vs. The Network Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Lance Tan Ong
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