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    Thursday, May 17, 2018

    The PWR 2017-2018 Calendar Year Look Back

    When it comes to the biggest show of PWR’s calendar year, Wrevolution X has served as both the end of the 12 months’ worth of storytelling, as well as the beginning of a new chapter in the company’s growing history. And true enough, from last year’s Wrevo X all the way up to PWR Live: Trapik!, PWR has seen a lot of changes and major happenings—a testament to how the local scene has grown with the evolving times.

    As we approach the fourth installment of the show celebrating PWR’s beginnings, it’s only right that we look back at the year that was, highlighting the events that went down. And to say that the past year was a defining time in their history is an understatement.

    Chris Panzer: The Man

    For the longest time, the Leader of the Panzer Army was considered a choke artist for being unable to win the big one when it mattered the most. My, how times have changed.

    Ever since winning the PWR Championship from John Sebastian, he has become the franchise player fans have always known him to be. He main evented multiple PWR shows as a fighting champion, pulling off amazing classics against the likes of Jake de Leon, Ralph Imabayashi, and Billy Suede. In fact, he had one of the greatest matches in the history of the company against the aforementioned Man of Renaissance at Bakbakan Sa Bayanihan, a match that is still talked about today as a testament to the evolution of the local wrestling scene.

    The Rise of Rosales

    Miguel Rosales was arguably PWR’s best kept secret, a man everyone knew would eventually become a main event player sooner or later thanks to his aggressive intensity and in-ring prowess. After all, there is a good reason why he got that calling card from WWE’s Canyon Ceman.

    And true enough, 2017 was the breakout year for the Ruthless One, from the F4H vs. Deadly Synns rivalry that resulted in the greatest All Out War match in company history (to date) to his involvement in the main event picture with the likes of Peter Versoza and John Sebastian. His stock significantly rose further since his career-making performance at the first Ubusan ng Lahi Match, as well as his dominating run at the Path of Gold Match. Now, he will be competing for the PWR Championship at the grand stage that is Wrevolution X.

    It was quite the journey to the top, but the fact that he is now main eventing his first show in a singles capacity in the biggest show of the year speaks volumes.

    Love and Respect

    Before the aforementioned PWR calendar year, Ralph Imabayashi was already moving towards that descent into madness thanks to what he sees as fans not respecting pro wrestling. But what nobody expected was Rederick Mahaba, the perennial good guy of PWR and Ralph’s conscience, to lead him to said descent.

    From Mahaba’s shocking betrayal against JDL at Resbak to their quest towards PWR Championship gold, this once-cheered tandem has suddenly become the most hated duo in the PWR landscape, and played a significant role in the landscape-changing Ubusan ng Lahi Match.

    The one thing we are sure of is this: Ralph Imabayashi's descent into madness resulted in finally establishing the master of the Senketsu as the main eventer he was meant to be—a far cry from his initial foray into the championship picture. The same can be said about Rederick Mahaba, who has proven himself to be a vicious and no-nonsense competitor, savoring in a role that no one could expect him to be in—the complete opposite from his love-championing ways.

    From Personal Hell to the JDL Level

    2017 started off amazingly for the Senyorito, having defeated “Beautiful” Billy Suede at last year’s Wrevolution X in what many people hail as one of the greatest matches in Philippine history, and effectively, Match of the Night.

    Then, something happened. For one reason or another, JDL could not get the job done in his matches for the rest of 2017, especially in matches that mattered the most. As if this was not enough, he was injured at the hands (of judgment) of Vlad Sinnsyk, signaling the end of his 2017 campaign.

    Or so we thought. With a newfound aggression, he joined Team Sebastian at the Ubusan ng Lahi match at Vendetta last November and helped unseat Mr. Sy from his GM position. Since then, the newly-dubbed “Mr. Philippine Wrestling” has become a boon against different stars, including Dax Xaviera, SANDATA, and his upcoming opponent, Zayden Trudeau.

    Mr. Sy Never Catches a Break

    Within the realm of PWR, there is one constant: Mr. Sy and John Sebastian will never get along.

    Their ongoing hatred with one another continued through the rest of 2017, even after the Wrestling Lord and Savior lost his championship at last year’s Wrevo X. This culminated in the reveal that by virtue of equity infusion, John Sebastian became a majority owner of the promotion, leading to the Ubusan ng Lahi Match, where the representative of the winning team will be the big boss moving forward. Guess how that turned out for Mr. Sy, again.

    Since then, Sebastian’s relationship with Crystal has become public, eventually leading to their first PWR Tag Team Championship reign. Meanwhile, Mr. Sy appears to have found a new calling—at least for now—as a manager and hypeman for the returning Main Maxx.

    The Long and Winding Road of The Network

    At Wrevolution X last year, Chino Guinto won the PHX Championship in what should have been a unified victory for The Network. Unfortunately, jealousy continued to wreck the faction from within, as IDOL and The Golden Boy remained at odds with one another, with AB3 serving as the peacekeeper. They would eventually make up at Renaissance 2017, but unfortunately, Chino went out with an injury after that, resulting in the IDOL/AB3 tandem embarking on their own gold venture. This led to their first PWR Tag Team Championship win against the YOLO Twins at PWR x APCC. It seemed things should have been better by now.

    Then came IDOL leaving AB3 out to dry at Path of Gold 2018 as he joined up with Peter Versoza and his Flat Earth crusade, with them losing the tag titles in the process. Now, AB3 and IDOL are angry with one another, surely leading to them coming to blows in the Six-Man All Out War Championship Match this Sunday.

    Warren’s Way

    On paper, the tandem of Ken Warren and the YOLO Twins had every reason to dominate PWR. They are all championship-caliber talents, had common attitude wavelengths, and had each others’ backs. And for all intents and purposes, they had a very successful run all the way to the end of 2017. Sadly, good things don’t last forever.

    When the Social Media Sinister came back from injury at Kingdom Come, things heated up between Warren and the Twins, which all led to the latter finally ending their relationship with the former in a swift act of betrayal. Ken Warren got some retribution, as he not only eliminated both YOLO Twins at the Path of Gold Match, but he also won the entire thing in a quest to not only get revenge on Mike Madrigal—the man who almost put him back on the shelf—but also to become the first-ever two-time PHX Champion in history. And fans are happy to see him back in action after quite the whirlwind year.

    Deadly Sinns' Championship Year

    One way or another, everyone knew that both Mike Madrigal and Vlad Sinnsyk would eventually capture championship gold. And for the longest time, we all thought that it would be the PWR Tag Team Championship. By the end of the year, that prophecy would come true, just not in the way anyone would expect.

    Mike Madrigal capitalized on the PHX Championship vacancy and won his way into his first title reign by winning the three-day #PHXcellence Tournament at PWR x APCC. To this very day, he still holds the championship, and should he retain his championship this Sunday, he would become the longest reigning champion of any kind in PWR's history. Not bad for a man who'd eventually be known as King Kups.

    Vlad Sinnsyk would set his sights on the world of the hardcore and achieve a career win by winning the All Out War Championship from the Apocalypse at Vendetta. It was a natural fit for the man known as the Hand of Judgment, who has managed to thrive in the no-disqualification division of the company.

    Not bad for two guys whose careers were previously boosted in the tag team ranks.

    New Breed V2

    2017 has definitely seen a plethora of fresh faces that marked a new era in Philippine wrestling.

    TDTxECX (Trian Dela Torre & "The Future" Evan Carleaux) have slowly become one of the most entertaining and refreshing duos in the scene today. 

    While The Future has been a standout in his own right and Trian dela Torre has become a star with his unique character approach, they would make a lot of noise as the definitive social media machine of local wrestling. The Carleaux Show remains one of the best platforms for PWR to continue their storylines, and has led to the debuts of "Kap" Tutan, GrabCamus, and Jhemherlhynn. True enough, when it comes to pushing the PWR product, these guys are the best at it.

    The year also marked the debuts of "The Anime-zing Fighter" Bolt and "The Canadian Dragon" Zayden Trudeau. These two rookies had a successful first year, having been involved in high-profile matches early in their career, including a bout at PWR x APCC which many people considered the match of the entire weekend. Soon enough, they would become a tag team and continue to wow audiences with their high-octane style. And while they may have broken up due to a tag team stipulation at Trapik, things should look bright for the two moving forward.

    QUATRO's story arc is one that remains one of the most interesting and intriguing in all of PWR. What started as a man who represented the Council of the Trabajadores has become a tale of a budding star wanting to become independent and break out to become the light. And true enough, QUATRO has gone on to put out spectacular matches against anyone and everyone, to the point of having a praise-worthy performance at the Path of Gold Match until Supremo screwed him over. It won’t be long until QUATRO finally becomes the star he was meant to be, and it all begins this Sunday.

    It’s amazing to see how far Revo Ranger has gone. Initially debuting in a match against a T-Rex (seriously), he has gone on to become a competitive fan favorite, slowly and steadily improving in the eyes of the fans. And now he is in a rivalry against "Flat Earther" Peter Versoza in his quest to defend science and the roundness of the planet.

    The Kakaibros made their tandem debut at PWR Renaissance and have simultaneously become one of the most despised and beloved tag teams in PWR. As the embodiment of jejemon culture, they have earned the ire of PWR fans for their unruly and irritating antics. But they've also proved themselves to be humorous, while slowly improving to pull out amazing matches, on their way to becoming low-key favorites in the scene today.

    You also have Brad Cruz, who not only is somewhat similar-looking to Chris Panzer, but also one of the most entertaining guys in the roster. Then, there's Kapitan PWR, pretty much PWR's mascot at this point, and McKata, a FlipTop rapper who’s slowly making waves in the company—rounding out one of the most diverse rookie debut years ever, a testament to the improving roster of the company.

    These were just some of the major highlights that help sum up what is possibly PWR's best calendar year to date. There is really just so much to cover, and the best way to really see everything that the four-year-old promotion has to offer is to check their shows out yourself. And whether you are a new or a long-time fan, what better way to start the year right than with their biggest show, right?

    What are your favorite moments during the PWR year that was? Sound off in the comments!


    You can catch all of this high-octane professional wrestling action and more at Wrevolution X coming to you on May 20, 2018 at the iAcademy Auditorium located in HV Dela Costa in Makati City! Advance and discounted tickets are now available. To order, send a Facebook message to PWR, e-mail them at pwr.tickets@gmail.com, or visit partner ticket sellers: Tavern at the Crossroads in Cubao Expo, Kramer Toy Warden, or Pauline’s Printing.

    Ticket Prices

    Earlybird Tickets (until May 19th): P350 each
    Barkada Bundle (until May 19th): P999 for three tickets
    Wrevo X BIG Barkada Bundle (until May 19th, exclusively at partner sellers): P1,500 for five tickets
    Regular Tickets (May 20th, at the venue): P400 each


    Disclosure: Smark Henry is owned and operated by a group of independent Filipino pro wrestling fans, but includes members affiliated with the Philippine Wrestling Revolution.

    Pictures c/o Philippine Wrestling Revolution and "Hotto Doggo" Hub Pacheco
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    Item Reviewed: The PWR 2017-2018 Calendar Year Look Back Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Lance Tan Ong
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