Saturday, September 3, 2011

More Thoughts on the Independent Wrestling Promotions of Today

It has been a few weeks since my last post, I think I had brain-freeze or something, but now I am back and want to follow up on my thoughts of "Indy" wrestling groups that are running today. I first want to talk about two recent "wrestling matches" I saw (well, one I actually watched) here in the Mississippi area. Both were pretty much the same. Both were actually promoted by a good professional wrestler that most of you probably know. Both had the same problems. Terrible location, lack of wrestling talent and lack of promotion. The first show drew about 35 people and started about an hour after the announced start time. I counted 16 people at the second one, half I think were with the "wrestlers", I left at 10:30 pm (scheduled bell time was 8 pm) and they still had not started. They were waiting for the "late crowd" to arrive. By the way, this one was at a night club. You WILL NOT build a wrestling promotion like this! Just because you are actually an experienced  professional wrestler does not mean you can be a promoter. Just because you are an experienced promoter does not mean you can be a wrestler. Hell, I enjoy watching a good movie but, that does not mean I can be a great actor that people will pay money to see! That is just called Common Sense! Yes, there have been times in the past that these thing have happened, but that does not make it the norm. It reminds me of the TV commercial today where at the end, Alec Baldwin is sitting in the co-pilot chair of an airliner and reaches up to flip a switch or something. The pilot reaches over and stops him and then he turns towards the pilot and says "It's OK, I've played a pilot before"! This brings me to two main things that I have a problem with in some of the promotions running today that I know of.
#1. Wrestler/Promoter. And I use these terms loosely. Although they may be doing a pretty good job of advertising their shows, they are not doing justice to the overall promotion. If you have some young guys that do have talent and potential, Push them! Get them over with the fans! You are not helping them, yourself or the fans if you continue to put yourself in the main event as the main attraction! You need to realize that you may just be a young good-looking guy who knows "a few" wrestling moves, trained "somewhere" by "somebody", has some money, can cut a pretty good interview and want to impress the ladies, or you may be someone who has a basic wrestling knowledge, been in the wrestling business for a number of years, but never were a Main Event wrestler in any territory, can cut a pretty good interview, should have hung up your boots a long time ago, and you can now only waddle around the ring because you are too fat and out of shape.
#2. Failure to Learn. For any wrestler or promoter that says "You can't tell me anything about wrestling" or "You can't tell me anything about promoting" because you think you have done or seen it all, I have to feel sorry for you. My background is in promoting and, was fortunate enough to do very well for a long time. But the thing is, I was constantly learning from my father, as well as others. I made my mistakes. My father made his mistakes. Others made their mistakes. The difference is, we were always open to advice from others. If you agree, go with it. Try it. If you disagree, go with your gut feelings. That is the best way to learn. There are a few guys still around from my days that I keep in touch with and consider really good, if not great, wrestlers in their time, but the one thing I have never heard any of them say is "You can't tell me anything". Just the opposite. They will say "There were a helluva lot of guys who could tell me something, AND teach me something"! It's a bit sad that the true art of wrestling and promoting is being lost these days.
But, it may not be totally lost. I am hearing a couple of good things that are in the works in different areas, people that are sincere about doing it right. As a matter of fact, I am in the process of lining up a match here in Mississippi next month to help benefit a very worthy cause. The one thing I can promise is that I will promote this event to the best of my ability, and I will have a card with some really talented wrestlers. It has taken me awhile to line up the talent but I am very pleased with the guys I will bring in. I could have easily made a couple of calls and brought in a bunch of guys to get in the ring and do "something".  But thanks to a couple of good contacts, many phone calls and looking at many videos, I will have both seasoned and really good young up and coming talent. Whether 30, 300, or 3,000 fans show up, we are going to put on one helluva wrestling match! Looking forward to my next "learning experience"! Have a great and safe labor Day Weekend, Y'all!!