New England Championship Wrestling (NECW) is an independent professional wrestling promotion based in the Northeastern United States and has promoted events since 2000. It was owned and operated by promoter Sheldon Goldberg (host of "The Mouthpiece Wrestling Show" on WWZN), Matthew West, Kyle White, and Roy Rossi and was one of the top independent wrestling promotions in the New England- area.
Its roster has, at one point, included independent wrestlers Antonio "The Promise" Thomas, Slyk Wagner Brown and Rick Fuller as well its women's division World Women's Wrestling which includes some of the most prominent female wrestlers in the country such as Ariel, Sumie Sakai, Alere Little Feather, Riptide, Nikki Roxx, Lexxus, April Hunter, Malia Hosaka and Mercedes Martinez.
World Wrestling Entertainment wrestlers Kofi Kingston, John Cena, Kenny Dykstra and "Hurricane" John Walters also competed in the promotion during their early careers. Former WWE announcer Kevin Kelly was also involved at one time as a booker for the promotion.
Former editor of the Mat Marketplace newsletter, Sheldon Goldberg had been involved with promoters Tony Rumble and Paul Heyman in bringing Michinoku Pro to the United States during the late-1990s. By September 2000, Goldberg himself began holding professional wrestling events in the Boston-area, successfully selling out local venues such as Good Time Emporium in Somerville and the National Guard Armory in Quincy. Over the next several years, the promotion developed a strong following based on its traditional "family-friendly" style of professional wrestling as an alternative to the adult themed sports entertainment adopted by World Wrestling Entertainment. NECW was once a member of the National Wrestling Alliance.
In 2004, the promotion became the first to produce a weekly wrestling TV show specifically produced for distribution on the Internet through its affiliate NECW.tv website. Its weekly internet broadcasts eventually grew to an average of over 20,000 viewers per week in over 40 countries around the world. Its exposure was further increased through DVD releases of yearly supercards such as the popular Iron 8 Championship Tournament.
In March 2006, New England Championship Wrestling merged with PWF Mayhem. On August 16, 2006, the merged companies unified their championship titles in an interpromotional event in Quincy, Massachusetts. The event saw PWF Mayhem Tag Team Champions The Canadian Superstars (J-Busta & Dave Cole) defeat The Wild Boys (Billy King & Mike Lynch) for the NECW Unified Tag Team Championship, PWF Mayhem Junior Heavyweight Champion "The Talent" T.J. Richter defeated "Big Guns" Frankie Arion for the NECW Unified Television Championship and PWF Mayhem Heavyweight Champion "The Human Nightmare" Evan Siks defeated D.C. Dillinger for the NECW Undisputed Triple Crown Championship.
Also in March 2006, the company launched World Women's Wrestling, an all female offshoot of the main NECW promotion.
On June 11, 2008, NECW was one of several New England independent promotions which participated in a special benefit show for Brandon Cusick, a 5-year-old child diagnosed with leukemia, at the Bank Street Armory in Fall River, Massachusetts.
The promotion folded following its "Toxic Waltz" event on November 6, 2010.
In March 2011, Sheldon Goldberg, on his radio show, announced that NECW would resume regular operations with an event in Carver, Massachusetts on May 14, 2011. On May 14 New England Championship Wrestling made their return to active operation in Carver, MA for the 2nd annual “A FIGHT FOR ALEX” a benefit event for a child suffering from a form of brain cancer.
Iron 8 Championship Tournament
The Iron 8 Championship is a trademark annual event hosted by NECW. Eight wrestlers are selected from inside and outside of NECW to compete in four single elimination matches, in which the winners of the four matches would compete in a forty-five minute ironman match to crown an Iron 8 Champion.
|2004||"Revolution" Chris Venom||August 22, 2004||Somerville, MA|
|2005||"The Pinnacle" Paul Lombardi||October 15, 2005||Framingham, MA|
|2006||"Die Hard" Eddie Edwards||June 23, 2006||Quincy, MA|
|2007||"Die Hard" Eddie Edwards||June 9, 2007||Brockton, MA|
|2008||"The Golden Greek" Alex Arion||May 31, 2008||Quincy, MA|
|2009||Antonio "The Promise" Thomas||May 30, 2009||Quincy, MA|
|2010||"Handsome" Johnny Hayes||May 1, 2010||Somerset, MA|
The Toxic Waltz
The Toxic Waltz is an annual event that originated in PWF Mayhem. The Toxic Waltz is a ten-man gauntlet in which the winner would receive a Triple Crown Championship match at the winter showcase; Genesis. The match begins with two men in the ring, and contrary to a traditional gauntlet, the loser of each fall picks the winner's next opponent. The tenth man selected could be anyone in or out of NECW. The last man standing would be the winner. On November 7, 2010, news began to spread that the 2010 Toxic Waltz would be the last event for NECW. Therefore, 2010 Toxic Waltz winner "Handsome" Johnny Hayes will face "The Real Deal" Brandon Locke for what will now be the PWF Northeast Heavyweight Championship after PWF Northeast resumes operations in 2011.
|2005||"The Human Nightmare" Evan Siks||September 16, 2005||Quincy, MA|
|2006||"Straight Edge" Brian Fury||September 30, 2006||Quincy, MA|
|2007||Max Bauer||December 28, 2007||Quincy, MA|
|2008||"The Golden Greek" Alex Arion 1||November 1, 2008||Quincy, MA|
|2009||"The Real Deal" Brandon Locke||November 21, 2009||Quincy, MA|
|2010||"Handsome" Johnny Hayes||November 6, 2010||Quincy, MA|
1Arion was the 9th man to lose in the match, but because the man who pinned him ("The Masked Enforcer") revealed himself to be Max Bauer (who wasn't cleared to compete that night), Sheldon Goldberg gave the win to Arion by default.
Tag Team Classic
The "Tag Team Classic" is a one-night, tag team tournament for an NECW Tag Team title shot. The tournament was introduced on September 19, 2009 at the National Guard Armory in Quincy, MA.
-Real Natural (Brandon Locke and Scott Osbourne) defeated Stupefied and Twiggy -Mike Bennett and Guy Alexander defeated T.J. Richter and Mr. Munroe -The Red Devil Fight Team (Mikhail Ivanov and Aleksander Chekov) defeated Davey Loomis and Alex Payne -Ryan Bisbal and Don Vega defeated 2.0 (Shane Matthews and Jagged)
-Real Natural vs Bennett and Alexander ended in a double-countout. As a result, the second semi-final match became the tournament finals.
-Bisbal and Vega defeated The Red Devil Fight Team.
Later in the night, then-NECW Tag Team Champions The Crown Jewels(Bad Boy Jason and Darling Damon) defeated Bisbal and Vega to retain the titles.
A second annual Tag Team Classic tournament has been scheduled for September 11, 2010 at the National Guard Armory in Quincy, MA.
In the spring and Summer of 2010, NECW held the first Breakthrough Bash tournament with the winner getting a spot in the annual Birthday Bash event.
-Ray Keijimura defeated "H2O" Ryan Waters and Vinny Marseglia in a 3-way match -Triplelicious defeated Mr. Mini-Roe -Matt Magnum defeated Marco Macc -Vinny Marseglia defeated "H2O" Ryan Waters and Mr. Mini-Roe in a "Last Chance Challenge" 3-way match
-Ray Keijimura defeated Triplelicious -Vinny Marseglia defeated Matt Magnum
-Ray Keijimura defeated Vinny Marseglia
Move to cable TV
On August 9, 2009 at NECW's 9th anniversary show, NECW announced that starting on January 8, 2010, NECW matches will air from 4-5PM on Fridays on Comcast SportsNet New England. That makes NECW the first pro wrestling promotion on CSNNE since the channel(then Fox Sports Net New England) aired TNA Impact! from 2004-2005. NECW was to tape the debut broadcast for CSNNE on December 19, 2009 in Quincy, MA, but postponed the taping due to inclement weather. The first 4 episodes were posted on NECW's website after technical issues forced the show's debut on CSNNE to be delayed until February 2010.
During that time, CSNNE informed NECW that due to a network obligation they could not live up to the originally contracted Friday afternoon time slot for the term of the contract. The show was moved by mutual agreement to airing as a weekly original program on the Comcast On Demand service throughout New England.
This is the first time a weekly pro wrestling show has been distributed in this manner and is another pioneering effort by NECW, similar to when NECW began offering weekly original wrestling programming via the Internet more than 5 years ago, long before there was a YouTube or a Hulu.
NECW is now available to roughly 2.2 million Comcast subscribers in portions of 5 of the 6 New England states. For those that are not Comcast subscribers, the shows are made available online through the company's website replacing the weekly Internet-only program.