Da Pope Toughs It Out In Lockdown Loss To AJ Styles, Explains Why It Makes NWA TV Title Win Even Sweeter
The Watch List takes a look at what matches you should be watching while you’re at home and they come recommended by your favorite professional wrestling stars. WrestleZone recently spoke with Da Pope, who picked his work in TNA against AJ Styles as one of his favorites.
Da Pope was primed to win the TNA World Heavyweight Championship in 2010, but plans changed and an unfortunate shoulder injury took him out of contention. As Pope explained it, coming up short a few times and still having the support of his Congregation is why his recent NWA Television Championship win is that much more meaningful to him.
“Pope vs. AJ Styles in 2010 and I’ll tell you why. That’s because that match was—I think it’s universally known that I was supposed to win the TNA World Championship. That changed before the show got underway, and so Pope never became the world champion. That was at our Lockdown event, I believe in St. Louis,” Pope explained, “and yeah, it’s a hell of a match, it’s one of my favorite matches. I ended up separating my shoulder two minutes in and I refused—they were telling us to go home, they were telling us to end the match. And I refused to end the match, even though my shoulder was hanging out of its socket.”
“So that’s one of my favorite matches. And it certainly makes this moment of becoming the NWA World Television Champion, it makes it that much more sweeter, certainly for the fans of Pope. That moment was great for me, not just good, but it became great. Because all of those people, the fans, the viewers, my Congregation that have stuck beside me and have always said that, ‘You should have been ECW champion,’ which I was in line for, ‘You should have been the TNA world champion’, which I was in line for. Well, now your boy is the champion of one of the most prestigious titles in the history of this business, one that I grew up on, one that the “American Dream” had. I grew up, and this title, the NWA Television Title, means so much, so much more. I’m very excited that they’re that excited about the accomplishment,” Pope said, “and I wanna let them know that I’m not done. I’m going after Nick Aldis. I plan to go after him. I plan to make some noise. I plan to call him out. I plan to get my shot at the ‘Ten Pounds Of Gold.’”
Check out some full-length matches from Pope’s career below:
D’Angelo Dinero vs. AJ Styles (TNA World Heavyweight Championship)
TNA Lockdown — April 18, 2010
D’Angelo Dinero vs. Fred Yehi
BCW Urban Warfare — March 25, 2017
“The Pope” Elijah Burke vs. Brandon Scott (Steel Cage Match)
VCW Quarantine at 6:15 — October 16, 2018