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  Oct 1, 2000



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ACW debut a smash


By JOHN POWELL -- SLAM! Wrestling

Jacques Labardeau, Lars Phoenix, Bobby Clancey and Sid Sommers aren't household names in Canada but with enough support they just might be one day.

The superstars of the All Canadian Wrestling federation (formerly known as ICW) got their big break this Saturday as their first nation-wide broadcast aired on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. And what a show it was. Sure, the promos weren't exactly up there with The Rock and Mick Foley. There were a few audio glitches and some of the talent looked a bit nervous but surprisingly enough, it was an entertaining and well-polished presentation. Much better than one ever thought it would be for an indie promotion based out of Cambridge, Ontario.

Joe Frocklage and Waldo von Erich's wrestling talent and production staff really came through. The show itself looked good and the matches themselves were proficiently worked and booked. Also, it didn't hurt that Canadian wrestling legend, Billy "Red" Lyons, was part of the broadcasting team. It was great to see and hear the Maple Leaf Wrestling regular back behind the mike once again.

The British Commonwealth Championship and a purse of $2000 was up for grabs in the opening bout. The Phantom, Don Koyote, Jacques Labarden, Terry Two Rivers, Lars Phoenix, Lance Malibou, The Renegade (Not WCW's Renegade, he passed away) and Vince Valentino vied for the prizes in a battle royal format. The quick-thinking Terry Two Rivers dumped out both Lars Phoenix and The Renegade as they struggled in the ropes to come out on top.

Next up it was outstanding tag team action with the high-flying tag team champions - Brian Ireland and "Sweet" Steve Lee - against the powerhouse twosome of Elvis Elliot and Scott Stone. Though Elliot and Stone came away as winners, the victory was shrouded in controversy with a double pin ending. Ireland and Lee have demanded a rematch.

ACW's version of Spike Dudley (well, sort of) Bobby Clancey took on strongman Otis Apollo in a refreshing back-to-basics bout. Clancey, the fan favourite, pinned Apollo with his Ecstasy Crash (Dudley's Acid Drop, sort of) despite the interference of Apollo's glowering partner Car Wreck.

In the main event, ACW Champion - Sid Sommers - slugged it out with challenger Gaza "Dog" Kolman. Endearing himself to yours truly, Sommers pulled the ropes down on Kolman putting him through a table at ringside then beat him with a steel pipe taken from the ring supports. Both men were counted out so Sommers retained the title.

Saturday's broadcast was termed as a "pilot episode". It is not known whether future editions will air on APTN.

Canadian promotion hits the airwaves