What Champions are Made of

August 21, 2014

Everybody’s goal in the wrestling business is to become world champion. Whether you are in a big time federation or just a fledgling independent or a strong rising federation like PWF/Zero1 being a champion is an ultimate goal—in the next few months I am going to be writing articles on the history of Wrestling world Champions, starting this month with the original NWA.

It all started wth a man named Frank Sexton. “The Sedalis Cyclone” was a staple in the American Wrestling Association, and numerous times held its world championship belt, before unifying it with the NWA championship. 2 months later he lost it to a man named Orville Browne who for over a year held onto the prestigious title until a car accident forced him into retirement. The man who then became champion is the subject of my article today—–the great Lou Thesz

Aloysius Martin “Lou” Thesz was the greatest NWA champion of all time. After being trained as a child for numerous years he made his debut in 1932 and almost immediately caught the eye of the great Ed Strangler Lewis. After training with him for many years he became one of the biggest stars in that time in the St Louis area

In 1948 the National wrestling alliance was formed. The first scheduled title match was between Orville Brown and Lou but Orville had the car accident and thus Lou Thesz began a 7 yr run of greatness unifying all the local world chamopionships into the World heavyweight cham pionship.

He has been inducted in numerous hall of fames and held 16 different world titles as well as having the most years as a NWA World heavyweight Champion. He was known to have numerous 60 minute, 90 minute, even 120 minute matches and come back the next night and wrestle.

He was a master of the scientific art of wrestling and was probably the greatest “hooker” (submission wrestler) of all time. His style transcends generations and is shown by beating people of all shapes andf sizes in his run. Without his influences we wouldnt have had wrestlers like Jack and Jerry Brisco, The funk brothers, Ric Flair, and many others. Arguably one of the greatest and most used finishes in wrestling today, The STF was invented by him. In this generations people like Daniel Bryan, John Cena, and even the late Chris Benoit, used it as their finishers of choice.

He also showed his longevity by becoming the only wrestler to wrestle in 7 decades when he wrestled his protege Masahiro Chono in 1990 at the ripe young age of 74! He is truly a legends legend and one of the wrestlers all modern day wrestlers should model themselves after.

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Pro Wrestling Manager The Grand Wizard

November 20, 2013

Pro Wrestling Fit USA Manager Leroy Jenkins brings you another educational article sharing his many years of pro wrestling knowledge. Please feel free to comment and share this link with your friends. We always love to hear from our readers and share their opinions in the comments section.

Younger wrestling fans might not be familiar with this man but the Grand Wizard of Wrestling (Abdullah Farouk) was a pioneer in the professional wrestling world.  The manager of champions was one of the triad of managers in the 70s that dominated the World Wide Wrestling Federation.  Unlike other managers however he did it using only his brain and his words, as he was not the most imposing specimen of a man physically—–yet still always found ways to interfere in matches his men were involved in.

Here is a list of just some of the men that the grand wizard has led to greatness:

1)  Stan “the Man” Stasiak.   The man known for the heart punch was a rough rugged rawbone wrestler who won the world title in 1973

2)  Professor Toru Tanaka and Mr Fuji.  The first WWWF  title held by the grand wizard was with the dastardly men from the orient.

3)  Superstar Billy Graham.  This was probably the greatest success the Grand Wizard had.  Superstar graham was a pioneer for the flamboyant wrestling styles seen today.  He held the title for over a year domingating the talent in the mid to late 70s

4)  Pat Patterson.  He managed the first intercontinental champion.  This was the final belt the Grand Wizard had in his stable

The Grand Wizard was a master of the insulting promo.  He could draw heat in a matter of seconds bedhind a microphone.  Here is an example of him at his finest—-
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrt8LKlr-g0

From a personal standpoint I hated the Grand Wizard of Wrestling.  I would however turn in every single week just because I hated him and wanted to always see him get his comeuppance.   Which means he was as good at his job as  anyone.  I personally modeled myself in the business after his character, wanting to be known more for what I say and how the crowd reacts to me than my physical prowess.  Ernie Roth in my opinion should be the model all managers should be after.  I remember crying watching Superstar Graham defeating my hero Bruno Sammartino to the point i wanted to quit watching wrestling forever.  But something about Ernie’s hypnotic way kept me watching week after week


WWE Has Killed This Industry

September 23, 2013

This article is by Mark Madden. Areas in parenthesis are the opinions of (RICK LOVE)

Judging by the word-drool that fills the comments section below this column, most of you appear to like WWE’s booking. A lot.

I understand. For many of you, WWE is the only wrestling you’ve ever known. You think there’s only one way of doing things, because you’ve only seen one way of doing things. You believe the McMahons are infallible. If they do it, it’s right. (Nothing could be further from the truth. There is a whole world of professional wrestling waiting to be discovered by most “wrestling fans” This world includes online magazines, radio and television shows.)

I understand why you think that way. But you’re wrong.

Even though WWE is making lots of money – mostly because they’ve figured out and maximized every ancillary revenue stream – it’s not a very popular product. In fact, the wrestling industry has never been less popular. The proliferation of the IWC and WWE’s big-time feel obscure that fact, but it is a fact.

I know most of you don’t like to pay attention to facts, but here goes:

*During the height of the WWE-WCW Monday Night War, the combined viewership of Raw and Nitro often topped a 10 rating. These days, the Raw rating occasionally  tops 3.0 and mostly hovers around 2.8-2.9.

Question: Where did all those people go? Answer: They don’t watch wrestling anymore. Conclusion: Wrestling is A LOT LESS POPULAR. (The sad part is that the kind of pro wrestling that these fans would like to watch is still available on the Indy scene being held at local Night Clubs, VFW halls and National Guard Armories around the country. But, most of these promotions lack the thousands of dollars that it takes to market a local television and radio show successfully).

Some people were just WCW fans. That’s something Vince McMahon would have done well to figure out when he bought WCW and staged that sham “invasion.” The smart move for business would have been to absorb all of WCW’s contracts, maintain WCW as a separate promotion, maintain Nitro as a separate TV show, and gradually have a competitive invasion, not one that served an agenda.

But the McMahons have done nothing but serve agendas since they day they bought WCW. Hence the declining popularity.

*Before WWE started going national in 1984 and wiped out all the territories, there were far more wrestling fans than there are now. Far more wrestling fans than there were during the peak of the Monday Night Wars. There were 30-40 shows every weeknight, more than that on weekends, many of them well-attended. Every territory had its own TV show, and most were well-watched. (Pro Wrestling Fit USA is the only company in the USA in a position to bring back the territories and those popular shows. But they need the support of real wrestling fans. Not the folks who think that video games style of stuff done at WWE is wrestling.)

Wrestling was a much more highly-regarded staple of TV back then. The shows weren’t as well-produced as WWE, but had a certain regional touch that WWE lacks. They could be tailored to their audience. A national promotion must be generic. Regional promotions were booked and produced to appeal to that region. (This gives local wrestlers a chance to compete on a regional level in front of their home-town crowds instead of selling their soul for a contract full of loopholes that WWE can use at any time to drop them.)

McMahon-style wrestling is not the be-all and end-all. It’s merely an option. It was better when there was more than one option.

So, no matter what your inexperienced eye’s affinity may be for WWE’s current product – who I am to tell you what to like? – the end result of WWE’s takeover of the wrestling business is the industry being far less popular. It seems bigger because of the presentation and because the monopoly puts WWE in the mainstream on far more references. But wrestling is far less popular.

When 68-year-old Vince McMahon leads the charge back against his own corporation, it will be the wrong move. When McMahon “saves” Daniel Bryan, making him his stooge in the process, it will be the wrong move. When the main event of WrestleMania revolves around “the family,” it will be the wrong move.

But you will embrace it like a long-lost lover. Not your fault. It’s all you know.

There is only one way to judge the success of wrestling. The Raw rating is stagnant. The SummerSlam buyrate was way down. So, you tell me.

Follow Mark Madden on Twitter: @MarkMaddenX

If you would like to see the kind of wrestling that you loved return to television then be sure to support your local Pro Wrestling Fit affiliate shows. You will be glad that you did!) Like us on our Pro Wrestling Fit USA facebook page! We are currently recruiting talent to train at our Pro Wrestling School to appear on future television shows.