NWA United States Tag Team Champions The Country Gentlemen vs. Knox and Murdoch Ended in a No Contest (Non-Title)
This was supposed to serve as a preview of what to expect in the Crockett Cup, though I wouldn't mind it being a feud over the tag titles coming out of the event. This didn't last long at all, but what we got was good. Chaos quickly ensued when other teams set to take part in the Crockett Cup came out and began brawling. It was a lively way to open the episode while that also hyped the tag team tournament.
The Now def. Ryan Matthews and Mario Pardua to Qualify for the 2023 Crockett Cup
As I've mentioned before, I'm familiar with The Now from the many years they've spent on the independent scene. They participated in last year's Crockett Cup tourney and I'm happy they'll be a part of this year's by virtue of their victory here (even though they're bound to be bumped in the first round). There wasn't much to the match itself since we know nothing about Matthews and Pardua, but it was serviceable and had the right result.
Samantha Starr def. Kylie Paige
I don't believe either of these women will be a part of the pay-per-view this weekend, so I don't know why this match had to happen on this show. I would have rather seen this time dedicated to an in-ring segment with Kamille and Natalia Markova instead. That said, this wasn't bad. Both women are finding their footing, but I think they'll benefit from working with wrestlers more experienced than them as opposed to each other.
Mercurio and Magic Jake Dumas def. Jamie Stanley and Joe Alonzo to Qualify for the Crockett Cup 2023
This was a logical match because Mercurio and Dumas have had something of an alliance as of late and Stanley is Alonzo's manager (and a wrestler himself, of course). This was a well-worked match. Mercurio and Dumas could make for an interesting team, but I would have preferred to see Stanley and Alonzo advance, if only because they can be taken more seriously and have better matches with the other teams in the tournament.
Thrillbilly Silas Attacked NWA National Champion EC3
It's not often that we get face-offs like this prior to pay-per-views, but I appreciated the approach they took. I thought both EC3 and Silas did a decent job of hyping their upcoming championship clash with their promos and Silas getting the better of EC3 was the right call in order to establish him as a threat to the title. I know EC3 won the belt not too long ago, but I'd definitely be down for Silas getting a run. He's been one of the NWA's most impressive players this year.
Go-home shows aren't typically the NWA's strong suit, but this might have been the best one I've seen them do in some time. There was a ton of hype and build for the Crockett Cup itself and I liked the final segment. I don't know what purpose Starr vs. Paige was supposed to serve, but it was fine. If you weren't planning on purchasing the pay-per-view before, this episode probably didn't change your mind, but at least it was worthwhile and featured matches and a closing segment that mattered.