Filed under: Wrestling
March 2nd 2013. Chicago, Illinois. Ring of Honor 11th Anniversary.
My usual pre-match warm-up has remained pretty consistent since I began my professional wrestling journey. Loosening up of the hip, knee, elbow and shoulder joints while “shrimping” on my back, throwing up triangle chokes to an invisible adversary. Squats and pushups, knock on wood, touch something blue. This event was no different in terms of my physical preparation, however my mental readiness for this particular match would require some reflection.
The day after my 26th birthday I reminisce to when I was eighteen years old having my first professional wrestling match. My life has been consumed by the pursuit of making a career out of wrestling. All of the matches, aches and pains, working through injuries and the thousands of miles driven to do so. Sleeping in my car, eating peanut butter packs retained from whatever local diner I had recently visited. Wrestling for an opportunity to gain experience and get noticed as opposed to getting paid is just the harsh reality for an Indie wrestler starting from the ground floor. It’s all of these things that make the journey and the struggle worthwhile. How could anything seem worth it or interesting if I had simply had all of the tools to walk right onto the American independent scene and be a top contender. It’s the process that develops and molds a person, wrestling guys who are better than you in front of crowds that have no idea who you are. True improvement only begins after finding comfort in the uncomfortable.
I’ve had a lot of people in my corner since day one and a lot of help though too. My initial trainers, Michelle Starr, Scotty Mac and Aaron idol helped bring forth the fundamentals in my game. Those first few years of wrestling were crucial in making sure I was safe in doing all the right things. Aaron Idol’s ability to break down every little aspect of a match and take the time to constantly work with me, making sure I had the tools to work the appropriate match anywhere on the card regardless of my opponent. He installed a confidence in me that would serve as a catalyst for me to finally crack through my shell in 2009 seeking new frontiers. Davey Richards would help me in breaking out on the American independents by constantly driving and pushing me beyond my threshold of what I perceived possible for myself. I would get my foot in the door at Ring of Honor, a goal I had set for myself since day 1 of the “In-Pain Asylum” wrestling school in Surrey, BC.
And here I am moments away from what is at the time the biggest match of my career. Bigger, more important matches will surely come but for now everything I’ve worked so damn hard for the last seven plus years comes down to this very moment. I am ready. The music hits, my tag team partner Bobby Fish stands next to me. We nod in synchronicity and walk through the curtain. When I walk back through that very curtain I will be carrying one of the Ring of Honor World Tag Team Championship belts.
I’ve wrestled the Briscoe Brothers numerous times, both in tag matches with several different partners and in singles matches. They are true professionals to say the very least and their talent is unparalleled. For eleven years their names have been synonymous with everything ROH is and stands for. Eight time World Tag Team Champs, Dem Boys. It is a true honor and learning experience every time I step foot in the ring with them and this match was no different. I have to thank Jay and Mark for not only paving the road for guys like me, but making ROH what it is today and helping provide the stage for guys like me to perform on. A true blessing and honor to win the tag titles from them and it is a crowning career moment that I will forever remember and be thankful for.
So for now Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly collectively known as reDRagon are on top of the independent wrestling tag team division. My motto is tried and true, hard work always pays off.
March 22 and 23 I will be returning to Reseda, California for PWG All Star Weekend 9! Should be a tremendous couple of shows and a great weekend. I always love wrestling for Guerrilla as the crowd is always nuclear hot and in to see some crazy wrestling. Everybody there works their ass off and it causes everyone to step up their game and try to steal the show. The cards are absolutely stacked so check it out if you get the chance.
March 30th ROH returns to Ashville, North Carolina for a huge event and of course “Wrestlemania” weekend ROH will be in New York City at the Hammerstein ballroom for Supercard of Honor live on iPPV April 5th. ReDRagon will be putting the titles on the line VS The American Wolves in a rematch that will surely be epic. Finally on April 6th in NYC, ROH will be taping TV at the Grand Ballroom in the Manhattan center. Check these events out if you’re in the area and be sure keep supporting wrestling at all levels and in all areas!