Pro Wrestling Illustrated – August 2022
English | 86 pages | pdf | 54.66 MB

THIS YEAR MARKS 35 years since PWI’s much-celebrated “Supercards ’87” issue. So much has happened over the last three-and-a-half decades: Wall Street crashed; The Berlin Wall was torn down; Digital technologies completely transformed the way many of us live, work, and communicate; WCW and ECW both rose and fell in spectacular fashion. And, of course, the rapidly expanding WWF, which nominally conquered both of those promotions, put the territory system down for a three-count.
Not to belabor a point that’s already been made in this column—several times, in fact—but today’s wrestling landscape bears more than a passing resemblance to the territories of old. Sure, it’s much easier to watch just about everything, regardless of where one lives. And yet, we see notable vestiges of the regional networks that PWI covered so dutifully back when “Supercards” first appeared in these pages.
Like WWE, All Elite Wrestling seeks to be a global phenomenon. Of course, it borrows quite a bit from Jim Crockett Promotions and World Championship Wrestling (among others), both in its presentation and geography. As soon as the pandemic put a halt to touring, AEW recorded a series of tapings at QT Marshall’s gym in Georgia. Its crew would soon head to Jacksonville and Daily’s Place, out of necessity.
The Southern rasslin’ tropes of blood-and-guts, TV time limits, and wild gimmick matches are back, twice a week, on the channels Ted Turner breathed to life. The National Wrestling Alliance, in its current incarnation, brought its 2022 Crockett Cup shows to Nashville, where IMPACT has taped so many matches in recent years (despite technically being a Canadian-owned company). Major League Wrestling, while not headquartered in Philadelphia, has nevertheless made an unofficial home base of the former ECW Arena. And the Baltimore-based Ring of Honor, now in the hands of Tony Khan, leaves behind its affiliate, Maryland Championship Wrestling, to be enjoyed by the locals.
Until last year, David Marquez was synonymous with the modern NWA. Today,
the producer/promoter is still going strong with his Championship Wrestling franchise— which has since expanded from its Hollywood roots to encompass Arizona, Memphis, and, most recently, Atlanta, Georgia. Those Championship Wrestling broadcasts stream via FITE TV, while also being syndicated on TV, utilizing legacy media along with new alternatives.
Speaking of FITE TV, the streaming service has offered incredible visibility to Game Changer Wrestling, which has to be considered the top independent (in the classic sense) in the U.S. right now. This GCW—not to be confused with the historical Georgia Championship Wrestling—has created two satellite, regional leagues in Jersey Championship Wrestling and L.A. Fights. Subscription streaming services such as IWTV, Title Match Network, and wXwNOW (Europe) have put the spotlight on numerous regional promotions the world over. And, of course, the IWTV championship was recognized as a bona fide world title by PWI last year, given that the belt is regularly defended in various promotions and locales. Several of PWI’s recurring columns are geographically focused, too, with Pat Laprade’s “Coast To Coast” covering myriad Canadian promotions, Lochlan Mc- Grath’s “On The Indies” and Kristen Ashly’s “The W Column” spotlighting regional companies, and Walter Yeates’ “Smooth’s Court” surveying the action in Mexico, Japan, and elsewhere.
Simply put: There is as much wrestling for us to cover as ever … arguably, a lot more. Hence why this 35th anniversary edition of “Supercards” spotlights 11 events, to 1987’s eight, along with some bonus “Quick Cards” at the end. We hope that this year’s edition helps you keep tabs on—and better appreciate—all the amazing action this sport has to offer.

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