Category Archives: Independent Wrestling

Wrestling for Warriors

One of the things I love most about independent wrestling is the huge heart the fans, wrestlers, and promoters have for helping others. Wrestling is a great vehicle for drawing attention to a cause and raising money to do some good. That’s the focus of a group I got to know at Heroes and Legends in Fort Wayne.

Wrestling for Warriors is a promotion that runs shows specifically to draw attention to a cause and do some good. The net profits from each show are donated to a chosen cause, such as Pediatric Cancer, Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, and Neurofibromatosis. Wrestling for Warriors also uses some of those profits to benefit patients in need directly by buying medical equipment patients otherwise could not afford.

Wrestling for Warriors strives to put on a quality wrestling show with name talents, including Kevin Thorn, ODB, Tommy Dreamer, and the former Santino Marella, Anthony Carelli. Fans can pay to get autographs and photos with their favorite stars just like other shows, but Wrestling for Warriors also has a program that allows people to nominate children with a debilitating illnesses to meet their favorite stars at no cost to them.

Wrestling for Warriors will be in action on May 20 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. For event and ticket information, as well as information about the promotion itself, please visit the Wrestling for Warriors website or follow them on Facebook.

Alex Daniels visits KOAT on his way to Southern Underground Pro

The first Southern Underground Pro Wrestling show is only two days away, and one of the featured competitors is on this week’s edition of the Kick Out at Two Podcast.

Alex Daniels, also known as the “real life Ben Affleck,” is the current AIW Champion and a native of AIW’s hometown of Cleveland. He’s one of twelve men vying to become the first Bonestorm Champion in Nashville on Sunday night, and a face to watch on the independent wrestling scene.

Download the Kick Out at Two Podcast on iTunes, Soundcloud, or Stitcher every Friday, and if you’re in the Nashville area, please come out and support Southern Underground Pro this Sunday night!

Why the Razor Ramones Rock

I will never forget the moment I became a fan of the Razor Ramones. It wasn’t when I heard them on Colt Cabana’s podcast. It wasn’t when I saw them walk on stage at Heroes and Legends in their throw back, Ramones inspired punk gear. It wasn’t when I heard them blaze through the songs from their album Rocket to Rusev before a largely apathetic crowd. It was the moment I saw one of them walking through the crowd trying to sell copies of their new album on cassette.

That’s right. Rocket to Rusev is available on CASSETTE.

Everything about the Razor Ramones is fun. For crying out loud, they’re a punk band that has found a way to combine their love for old school punk and pro wrestling. They have T-shirts to satisfy the Ramones fans as well as the wrestling fans. They write songs with titles like “Obsolete,” “SAWFT,” and “Sami Zayn is the Only Wrestler We Like.”

The boys are true wrestling fans as well. They weren’t at the show to make a buck. They were there as an excuse to see some wrestling. When they settled down and started selling merch at a table, they took the spot right at the entrance to the vendor area – in clear view of the ring.

And in true punk fashion, they weren’t rattled by the lack of reaction from the crowd. When I told them I was sorry they didn’t have a more receptive audience, they just shrugged it off. “We’re used to it,” one of them said. One could almost hear the spirit of Joey Ramone himself in those words.

The Razor Ramones are based out of Columbus, Indiana, but if you’re no where near Columbus, Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Louisville, or any of the other towns they frequent, you can also find them on Facebook and their Band Camp page.

Long live punk rock. See you soon, bad guys.

Two guests on this week’s Kick Out at Two

This week the Kick Out at Two Podcast welcomes not one but two guests eager to share their stories and introduce you to the world of independent wrestling.

Jimmy Lloyd is a product of CZW, one of the hardest schools of hard knocks left in the wrestling business. He’s just a few years into his career, but earlier this year he added “Staple Gun and Thumbtacks Death Match” to his resume thanks to an appearance in IWA Mid-South’s King of the Crimson Mask Event.

Also on the card this week is another rising star, Alex Cruz. Dubbed the Aztec Warrior, Cruz is an exciting young talent from the South who has worked with Elev8 Pro, Wildkat, and more.

Get to know the young faces of independent wrestling every week on one of my favorite podcasts, Kick Out at Two, available every Friday on iTunes, Soundcloud, and Stitcher.

Next Time Someone Bashes Women’s Wrestling…

Sunday in Fort Wayne, the ladies took hold of an apathetic crowd and made them pay attention. Mickie Knuckles, Dementia D’Rose, Amazing Maria, and Samantha Heights fought all over the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum in a fantastic No DQ/ Falls Count Anywhere battle.

The women's wrestling revolution did not begin or end with the E.

A post shared by Eat Sleep Wrestle (@eatsleepwrestle1) on

Later that evening, Randi West and Paloma Star did the same thing. Their battle for the Heroes and Legends title spilled out into and around the Arena. I personally overheard one man complaining to security about how “dangerous” he felt the match was, and according to others, one man demanded his money back because he and his girlfriend felt “unsafe.”

Next time someone tries to bash women’s wrestling, saying it’s all about sex and not as exciting about the men, tell them how some snowflake went and asked for his money back because he was scared of the ladies.

Tomorrow night, fans in Southern Indiana can witness just how brutal ladies wrestling can be. Mickie Knuckles will face Randi West at PWF’s one year anniversary show, Statement Made. And guess what? This match, too, will be No DQ/ Falls Count Anywhere.

Long live women’s wrestling.

Wrestling from the Underground

The first rule of Southern Underground Pro is… don’t call them SUP GRAPS.

Southern Underground Pro is a new wrestling promotion in Nashville. They’re not out to replace anyone else running in the area; they want to fill a void for fans and wrestlers. In a city with a proud wrestling tradition, their goal is to bring the very best in today’s independent wrestling to the Music City.

Southern Underground’s first show features a loaded card stacked with twelve hungry young wrestlers from all across the country: Curt Stallion, Kevin Ku, Nick Iggy, Kerry Awful, Dominic Garrini, Alex Daniels, Dr. Dan, Frankie Flynn, Chris Crunk Jaden Newman, AJ Gray and Brett Ison. All twelve men will be in singles action to start the show with the winners facing off in two triple threat matches. The winners in those two matches will go on to fight for the honor of becoming the first Bonestorm Champion!

The tournament format will give each individual wrestler a chance to shine on their own, and as the tournament progresses, the opportunity for some unique match ups will unfold. Imagine seeing Nick Iggy going one on one with his Carnies tag team partner Kerry Awful.

If successful, S.U.P. plans to run bi-monthly shows and feature even more of today’s stop independent stars. Fans can expect to see women’s matches and tag matches at upcoming shows, and S.U.P. is looking for a more family-friendly venue for future events.

Southern Underground Pro’s Battle for Bonestorm will take place on Sunday night, April 23 at The Cobra, 2511 Gallatin Ave in Nashville. For ticket and event information, go to the S.U.P. event page on Facebook.

 

Congratulations PWF!

A year ago, a new promotion opened up in Jeffersonville looking to make a statement. The men behind PWF wanted to fill a gap in the local scene. They wanted to be the place local fans could see not only the Midwest’s best talent, but stars from other regions of the country. This Friday, PWF celebrates their one year anniversary with a show aptly named, Statement Made!

Friday’s show features the kind of mix fans have come to expect from the new promotion. Former tag partners and Louisville based stars Myron Reed and Mickey Muscles go head to head. Four members of the Fear Family settle a family feud in a tag match. Gary Jay faces the Bullet Club’s Chase Owens. Aaron Williams battles Tyler Matrix and Dustin Rayz for the new Tri-State Championship Belt. Atlanta stars Murder One, Chip Day, and Adrian Armour go to war against local heroes Cash Flo, Hy Zaya, and Shane Mercer. The Boys from Jollyville face off with new fan favorite Pat Monix and partner Storm Grayson. And two ladies who stole the spotlight from the boys in Fort Wayne Sunday go head to head when Mickie Knuckles faces Randi West in a no DQ/ falls count anywhere battle.

The action starts Friday night at 8 PM at the home for PWF, The Arena in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Visit the event page on Facebook for details and tickets.

Congrats to all the wrestlers, promoters, refs, and fans who made this first year for PWF a success!

The Ladies Steal the Show at Heroes and Legends

First things first: Heroes and Legends is a fantastic promotion. Based in Fort Wayne, Indiana, this independent wrestling group puts on a heck of a show. Heroes and Legends VIII took place today at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. If the very name of the building doesn’t remind you of the old territory days, the guest list will. Ric Flair, Ricky Steamboat, and Jerry Lawler were the headliners, and the King even stepped into the ring, giving the fans a classic strap-dropping performance against Dru Skillz.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. The day began at noon, when the doors opened and fans came through to check out the vendor tables. Vendors included toys and collectibles, an artist, a few promoters from other area shows, a podcast, and the US military. Wrestlers for the show were sprinkled throughout the vendors to ensure that both wrestlers and vendors got some traffic.

Girl Fight put on a show that started around 1:30. The GF show was depleted due to several last minute cancellations, including Su Yung. The young competitors worked their hearts out, but could not get the attention of the crowd.

Enter Mickie Knuckles.

Mickie and Dementia D’Rose took on Amazing Maria and Samantha Heights in a tag match for the main event. Mickie tried to get the crowd’s attention and pump them up. The crowd gave her nothing, right up until the moment she said, “No Holds Barred, No DQ, Falls Count Anywhere.”

The fans popped, and the ladies literally tore the house down. Samantha Heights was duplexed down a set of bleachers steps and later tossed into a trash can. Amazing Maria was squashed beneath a steel chair. Maria and Samantha were dropped onto a table that refused to give. Fans swarmed, phones held high, to follow the action, with Sugar Dunkerton leading the crowd and the cheers in the front. It was sensational match that set the bar ridiculously high for the main show.

The Razor Ramones punk band played a brief  set mid-afternoon, then proceeded to sell cassettes – yes, I said CASSETTES – to the fans. (More on them later this week.) A battle royal took place at 4:30, with a surprise appearance by Bushwhacker Luke, and then it was show time.

The War Memorial Coliseum proved a great venue for wrestling. The main lights dimmed, and spotlights illuminated the ring, giving the whole room an old school feel. Once again, the ladies rose to the occasion, as the best match on the first half of the card was a Falls Count Anywhere battle between Randi West and Paloma Star, with Hardcore Heather Owens acting as guest referee.

Sugar Dunkerton and the former Adam Rose were an entertaining tag team in the second half of the night, and their match ended with a parade of Rosebuds, including the bunny. Their match was followed by Lawler and Dru Skillz from Indianapolis, in which Lawler gave the fans exactly what they wanted.

The main event pitted local hero Kongo Kong against Ryback, and it proved to be a phenomenal way to end the night. Kong dwarfed Ryback, who is not normally the smaller man in the match, and both men exhibited their power and agility. Ryback had no trouble powerlifting the monster Kong, while Kong brought the house down when he super-plexed Ryback from the top rope. The match became a triple threat when the masked “Ginger Dragon” entered the fray. The Dragon turned out to be Dru Skillz, who won the belt from Ryback, but Ryback and Kong teamed up on the duplicitous new champ – including two top rope splashes from Kong.

A few other thoughts on my first experience at Heroes and Legends:

Rob Conway is as good a guy as everyone says he is. The two of us graduated from New Albany High School in the early 90s, and it was great getting to meet him and hear some of his stories.

Shannon Moore shook hands with everyone in the vendor area when he arrived, even the non-wrestlers. A class act. Mickie Knuckles did the same just before she left.

I got to meet Tyger Smith, who helped train my friends Marc Hauss and Eric Emanon. Nice guy with some funny stories.

There’s nothing more cruel than teasing that we might get a Ninja (Hy Zaya) vs. Demon (Shane Mercer)  showdown at the end of a battle royal – only to see both eliminated by the masked man who won the match. So close!

Did I mention the ladies stole the show? Seriously, the WWE does NOT have the market cornered on women’s wrestling. Mickie, Heather Owens, and Randi West deliver every time. Dementia D’Rose and Paloma Star held their own with the hardcore veterans and dished some serious violence. Samantha Heights and Amazing Maria are stars on the rise.

If you’re in Northern Indiana, you owe it to yourself to check out Heroes and Legends. Jayson Maples and his crew do everything right, creating the perfect mix of classic stars with independent talent. Kudos to everyone who made today such a memorable event.

Tony Deppen on Kick Out at Two

Kick off your weekend with the podcast that shines the light on the stars of tomorrow, Kick Out at Two. This weekend Righteous Jesse, the Wilkman, and Bonnaroo Brittany welcome Tony Deppen to the show for a discussion about the hardcore scene, CZW, and more.

Kick Out at Two gives you the chance to get to know rising stars and veterans with great stories. You won’t just hear how they got into the business and who they’ve wrestled. You’ll learn everything from their favorite bands to their favorite donuts.

Download the Kick Out at Two podcast every Friday on iTunes, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. And be sure to check out the March 31 episode to get the full scoop on Southern Underground Pro Wrestling’s debut show on March 23.

Heroes and Legends this Sunday!!

The eighth edition of Heroes and Legends hits Ft. Wayne, Indiana this Sunday, and I can’t wait. This will be my first wrestling convention as a vendor, and I’ll be bringing copies of Bluegrass Brawlers, Eat Sleep Wrestle, Louisville’s Greatest Show, Lord Carlton, Kenny Bolin’s book, and the new release by Herb Welch, How to Become a Champion.

Heroes and Legends is a huge one day event where you can meet some of the greatest stars in wrestling, past and present. Rick Flair, Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat, Jerry “The King” Lawler, Bushwhacker Luke, Marty Jannetty, Tracy Smothers, and Sandman will be there, but you can also see and meet a number of more recent WWE stars like Swoggle, Aldo Rose, Mr. Anderson, and Ryback along with numerous independent heroes like Kikutaro, Rob Conway, Sugar Dunkerton, Tyson Dux, Kongo Kong, Hy Zaya, Amazing Maria, Shane Mercer, Su Yung, Samantha Heights, and Mad Man Pondo.

Fans will also be treated to not one but TWO wrestling shows, beginning with the Girl Fight Show in the afternoon and concluding with the annual Heroes and Legends show, headlined by two super heavyweights in Ryback and Kongo Kong.

Tickets and VIP autograph and photo ops are still available online. Visit the Heroes and Legends website and Facebook page for more info!

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