It’s one thing to see a pair of champions battle it out for top honours but wrestling fans in Red Deer will be treated to eight belt winners as they scrap to see who is the best this Saturday night at Festival Hall starting at 7:30.
According to CNWA promoter Vern May of Red Deer, it is time to have a national wrestling champion and so he has arranged for the champs of eight different organizations to get together in Red Deer Sept. 8th for a showdown to declare a champion for the first time ever.
“So we have them all compete to see who is the best of the best and have a true national champion,” said May, who explained wrestling has always been very territorial.
May says back in the hey day of Stampede wrestling for example, people knew about one champion and it ended there.
“That organization had its North American champion and they would never acknowledge there was a champion in Vancouver and a champion in Winnipeg and a champion in Toronto.”
May says now the fans can tap into so many resources they know there are other organizations out there which have a champion as well and this single elimination tournament will see one man emerge as the undisputed owner of the title belt and he will have earned it, says May.
“Who ever walks away with the belt at the end of the tournament will have wrestled three matches against the cream of the crop.”
May says typically it’s very tough to get wrestling promoters to agree to anything. In the past you might get two to agree to something but generally it is a very ego driven industry so to get this much cooperation to pull this together is special, he said.
One thing working in his favour to draw this card together is the fact he is a wrestler himself and has faced all eight of these competitors as Vance Nevada.
“So I can tell you, these guys are awesome.”
May points out the industry has really started growing over the past two years, attracting many young wrestlers in their mid 20s, all looking for the next contract with a bigger organization.
“This is an opportunity to be recognized as a champion of eight organizations, that is going to get attention from somebody at some level in the industry,” he said.
It provides a huge opportunity for one of those men and it is also great for the loyal fans of wrestling, he said.
“Championships you’ve only read about through the internet you are now going to see up close and personal Saturday night in Red Deer.”
As an added bonus, advance ticket buyers will be able to get into see the wrestlers before the general audience gets in and be able to lay their hands on the eight championship belts which will be in the house.
There is also a 10-man over the top rope battle royal and the winner of that contest will be the first wrestler to be able to challenge the newly-crowned national champion.
Two other matches are on the card with the ladies squaring off in one and NWA world heavyweight champ Adam Pearce from San Diego taking on Red Deer’s own Vance Nevada hit the ring in the other, in what May describes as their final meeting.
Tickets are $15 in advance at Full Spectrum Customs or online at Ticketweb.ca and $20 at the door.