The fair is no easy place to work a wrestling show. You might draw a handful of devoted fans, but you’re also going to draw a number of passersby – including people who are only stopping to laugh and heckle you.
Such was the case a few weeks back in my hometown when UWA put on an outdoor show at the fair. The first couple of wrestlers out to the ring did their best to pump up the crowd but received little to no response. Add in the drunks sitting near me on the bleachers, and it was a really tough crowd.
Enter Dick Devlin.
Devlin is a UWA original, and until that night, he had been working as a babyface. But when the fair crowd cheered his opponent – also babyface – and gave him little response on his entrance, he decided to take what he was given and play the heel.
“It was a really weird night,” he said, “We had both been working as babyfaces, but the crowd didn’t know who either one of us was. They seemed to want me to play the heel, so I did.”
In playing the heel, Devlin did something no one on the card had managed to do before him. He got the handful of drunken hecklers to not only engage with the show, but cheer for him.
“I threw my opponent into the fence. They said, ‘Do it again!’ So I did.”
Devlin has since turned heel for UWA, a rising promotion based in Southern Indiana that tapes television once a month at The Production House in New Albany. Devlin fell into the role quite naturally, having played a heel most of his career, and he is enjoying life on the other side once again.
Devlin grew up a fan during the attitude era and decided to give pro wrestling a try after attending a few Destination One Wrestling shows in Indiana. It’s a part-time job for him, as he’s also a full-time student majoring in criminal justice, and while he isn’t sure wrestling will become a full-time vocation, he’s enjoying every second of it.
Devlin is also very proud to be a charter member of UWA, a group he describes as being like family. “The promoters are a father and son, and they really cultivated a family atmosphere. I’ve been in locker room where there’s fighting and drama, but we don’t have any of that. These guys are my brothers, and I love it.”
Devlin can be seen on UWA TV, both on Youtube and the free Indie Wrestling Channel on Roku. Click play on the video below and skip to minute 38 to see Devlin and friends in his favorite match to date: a TLC match filmed at The Arena in Jeffersonville.