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Championship Wrestling from Atlanta: The First TV Taping

United We Stand

Well, the build-up has been and gone and the wait is over. That’s right—Championship Wrestling from Atlanta held its first tapings on September 2nd and, from the little hints and reveals given on social media, there’s a lot to be excited about in the coming weeks.

Let’s take a look at the big news coming out of the tapings. Look away now if you don’t want to see any spoilers, otherwise, read on to find out how the United Wrestling Network turned Atlanta into Hot-lanta!

Chris Dickinson Couldn’t Show—But He Had a ‘Pure’ Replacement…

Due to the severe and downright dangerous storms wrecking havoc on America currently, ‘The Dirty Daddy’ Chris Dickinson, who was scheduled to be one half of the main event where the UWN World Heavyweight Championship would finally be decided, was unable to fly in to Atlanta for the taping. Newark Airport was under a pool of water, something Chris showed on his Twitter. There was no way Dickinson could have flown to Atlanta safely, even if flights had been running. It was disappointing, but it was completely understandable and out of ‘The Dirty Daddy’s’ hands.

The UWN, to the credit, pulled a masterstroke by getting a replacement to fight Mike Bennett at short notice of sheer wrestling excellence, as well as being a very known name in the wrestling community.

That name?

‘The Foundation’ Jonathan Gresham.

Wow. Taking nothing away from Chris Dickinson, but that is one hell of a replacement! With Gresham, Dickinson and Bennett all wrestling for Ring of Honor, I’m sure a few strings were pulled and thank god they were. After a sterling match at ROH’s Best In The World show back in July, Gresham and Bennett are said to have contested another cracker in Atlanta.

While it has not been revealed whether the UWN World Heavyweight Championship was on the line or whether the UWN will wait for Chris Dickinson to be able to appear, Jonathan Gresham did make the sweet revelation on Twitter that this match was the first one that Gresham’s mother had been in the live audience for since his debut match all the way back in 2005! I’m sure she was very proud and impressed with what she saw.

As we all will be when the match airs on TV…

Zicky Dice Hosts a Birthday Party

It’s not a debut taping, I guess, without things getting a little…outlandish!

September 2nd, the day of the taping, just so happened to be Zicky Dice’s birthday (as well as it being Danny Limelight’s and Levi Shapiro’s too). With Zicky Dice being, well, Zicky Dice, there was no way he was going to let the occasion go unannounced on camera.

Talk has it that UWN head honcho David Marquez was taking part in a segment with Memphis’s own Dustin Starr when Dice came out in a party hat brandishing a big pink inflatable. Outlandish!

I don’t know what went down, but pictures from the moment certainly make it look like Marquez and Starr were just a little put out at having their moment interrupted by a fanny-pack rocking, party hat-wearing rock star.

Me? I wouldn’t mind the intrusion, but different strokes for different folks…

There Was a Hot Crowd For Hot-Lanta

From fans who were there, the number of fans in attendance was around the 150-200 mark, a great figure for a new promotion’s first TV taping when they haven’t held events previously (CWFA, that is, not the UWN).

The crowd was said to be extremely lively, which will create an exciting atmosphere when the show airs on TV. It’s great to have fans back in the action!

Danny Limelight & Slice Boogie Represented The Bodega

Although the original pairing of The Bodega was the ‘Fight and Flight’ combo of Danny Limelight and Papo Esco, in recent months it has been the pairing of either Slice Boogie and Papo Esco in Hollywood operating under the Freebird rule and defending The Bodega’s UWN World Tag Team Championship belts, or the team of Boogie and Limelight as the latest edition of LAX in MLW, that have been the most common.

Although the promotional images for the Atlanta tapings showed Limelight and the ‘King Fat Boy’ together and advertised to take on The Awakening (formally The Ascension), photos from the tapings show that Danny Limelight and Slice Boogie were together in the ring?

Does this mean Papo wasn’t there in Atlanta? I don’t know, as nothing has been specifically said on social media, but I hope he was. As much as I love the pairing of Boogie and Danny, sometimes you just want to see people get smacked by a big, beefy boy, and that’s where the ‘King Fat Boy’ comes into it. Beware The Bodega, where you can get anything you need—including a beatdown!

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Talk about excitement! If you weren’t pumped up for Championship Wrestling from Atlanta before, you’ve gotta be after all this! And the crazy thing is that the above is by no means an exhaustive list! We know one half of the NWA Women’s Tag Team Champions, Marti Belle, was there conducting backstage interviews. We also know that Manny Lemons, who has been appearing on Impact with Zicky Dice recently, wrestled a match with CWFH stalwart, ‘Uptown’ Andy Brown in the opening contest of the night. Then there was an appearance from ‘Our Pal Sal,’ Sal Rinauro, taking on David Ali, and Dani Jordyn throwing out a challenge on Twitter and CWFA themselves suggesting Marina Shafir.

The energy coming out of these initial tapings is exhilarating. Hold on to your hats: Championship Wrestling from Atlanta is set to be a wild ride.

Championship Wrestling from Atlanta debuts on September 18th on Peachtree TV.

Written by Chris Flackett

Wrestling obsessed since '91. Lived through the Monday Night Wars and is still here to tell the tale. Major fan of Strong Style, technical and Super Jr. Wrestling, as well as big versatile hosses smacking the hell out of each other. Lives in Manchester, England.

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