Living in a Moment: Serving as Ring Announcer For SCW
By David "It's Still Real To Me" Wills
"Tell Me Something, Who Could Ask For More
Than To Be Living In A Moment
Loving Every Minute
Tell Me Something, Who Could Ask For More
Than To Be Living In A Moment You Would Die For"
Sometimes you get an oppotunity to do something you always wanted to do. At that moment, you go with your gut and just do that special something. I recieved the opportunity to on March 4 in Lenior, NC to guest ring announce the two main events for Southern Championship Wrestling. Having been a life long fan of The Barbarian and Jerry Lawler and the Midnight Express and enjoying watching Dusty Rhodes and Warlord in the Powers of Pain growing up, It awesome to be able to commit to attend and participate in the show.
When I entered the building, I spoke with the promoters Rob and Tony to finalized much of what I would be doing on this night. At the gimmick stand before the fans arrived, I picked up a Four Horseman, Goldust and Badstreet USA T-shirt and a Public Enemy Jersey. Total Cost: twenty bucks. WHAT A BARGAIN!!
I spoke to Nigel Sherrod of Deep South Wrestling and razzed him about Vince firing Styles next and hiring him to call Raw. Nigel had Ken Wallace with him from Pro Wrestling Evolution in Georgia and they were handling play-by-play and commentary.
As the fans were piling in and the wrestlers arriving, I was awestruck to see so many legends in the building. Dusty Rhodes, Greg Valentine, Warlord, Barbarian, Dennis Condrey, Bobby Eaton, Jerry Lawler, Demolition Ax, Mike Jackson were all on the show and coming into the Locker room. Rising young stars and great talents such as Dillon Eaton, Brad Thomas, Krazy K Kirby Mack and Dexter Poindexter were also there. Rick Stiener and Ricky Morton called the promoter and let us know they were on their way to the building.
As the fans were getting autographs before the show, I was in the locker room being as respectful as possible to the stars and not drawing attention to myself. The locker room seemed divided with a line down the middle between the veterans and the young stars. I hung out with ref Ryan Michaels and the Georgia announcers when they would return to the locker room. Regardless of how many shows I announce or work, I still consider myself a fan and really didn't feel I fit in very well with all the talent in the locker room. The last thing I wanted to do was to embarrass myself in the presence of so many great stars. What I have done in the sport, but be in a popular video on the net? Sometimes, you say the most when you say the least.
I tried to watch a little of every match that was on that night. The opener with Brad Thomas and Dillon Eaton was very good. (I hope both of those guys have a great career and lots of success. They are super nice guys and wonderful young talents.) Even though he is in his sixties, Mike Jackson carried the Ultimate Dragon to a very good match. Krazy K and Dexter Poindexter had a good match that mixed some of the current wrestling style with comedy. Traci Brooks and Amber O' Neal were very good in the match and mixed in some old school comedy spots as well with a water bottle and spewing it in each other faces. Fans in Lenoir seemed to enjoy seeing Steiner defeat The Hammer for the SCW title. The fans popped for Demolition Ax hitting the ref during his match and getting dq'd.
In between and during some of the matches, I had some wonderful moments in the back. I was able to talk about the current lack of wrestling in Atlanta with current Georgia resident and wrestling legend Bill Eadie aka Demolition AX. I listened to Mike Jackson talk about how wrestling had changed from what it used to be and his opinions on the current product. It was great to meet Tracy Brooks who was really awesome. She really seemed to still be a fan and really happy to be in the business. I was able to talk with Barbarian and Warlord some and express my enjoyment of the Powers of Pain. I really enjoyed to be able to speak with the King on my appreciation for Memphis Wrestling. I will remember these moments for the rest of my life.
When it came time for me to be announced, I was introduced, came to the ring and did my "catch phrase". The annoucer for the evening handed me the microphone and I announced the main event. Two fans even made a sign for me and put my picture on it. I thanked them and autographed their sign for them at the show also. Keep in mind it was only two folks. So much for the "power of the internet." Seriously, I appreciated their enjoyment and legitimately enjoying meeting me. I enjoyed meeting them as much too.
When I introduced the Powers of Pain, I screwed up the Fabulous Playboy's name calling him the Ravashing Playboy the first time. ( When I was a kid, I had a team called the Ravashing Playboys in my fantasy promotion.) After that, Playboy did a promo and I was getting ready to announce the Midnight Express when Express manager CEO Rob Cornette took the mic and announced them (ala Jim Cornette) instead. Match was underway. A pretty good effort by both teams. Barbarian went to use a chair and accidentally hit the ropes with it causing him to get knocked out and pinned. I announced the finish. "Your winner by Disqualification, I mean Pinfall, The Midnight Express" Two matches to do and I have already made two mistakes. Sheesh. Tonight, isn't my night..
Next up is Dusty vs. Lawler. Keep in mind, regardless how one feels about them or what they have done, these two men are both former World Champs and very important figures and icons in this business. I introduce Dusty. I actually did OK with that introduction.
I get ready to introduce Lawler. Then, before I can complete the introduction, the mic quits working. The mic finally comes back on and Lawler takes the mic. He announces I sounded better with the mic off and insults me some more in an unplanned, but very effective promo. ( Yes, I GOT BE A PART OF A JERRY LAWLER PROMO. This Memphis wrestling mark can die a happy boy now.)
Through mic work and insulting the crowd, Jerry turned the crowd who cheered for him and were mixed for Dusty at first. After Lawler's promo, most of the fans were on Dusty's side. Dusty and Lawler then did mic work with each other (I had snuck out of the ring already by this time. No way did I belong that ring when two of the greats of the sport were plying their craft. I could never imagine script writers telling these two what to say. ) I so enjoyed standing at the ringpost outside the ring watching Dusty show the signs of the charisma that some folks have forgotten he had and Lawler showed why he was such a great draw in Memphis.
The match was very enjoyable. Lawler took some bumps and did some work with a chain. Dusty did some work with some punches and did an awesome Flip, flop and Fly. The Valets at ringside Queen Renee and Electra did some spots and fought a bit. Dusty won by DQ when Dennis Condrey and Bobby Eaton attacked Dusty and attempted to break his leg again. Lawler was upset the MX interfered in his match and they attacked him also with CEO Rob nailing Lawler with the Tennis Raquet. Rick Morton made the save and played peacemaker after the match with Rhodes and Lawler and all three of them finally decided to team up and face the Midnights if the MX would sign the match.
No, there wasn't fifty bumps in the main event. Dusty didn't do any huracanranas and Lawler didn't do a muscle buster. However, I was very entertained and it seemed many of the fans were as well. It seems emotion and passion and psychology can still get a match over these days. If fans are entertained, they are happy. (Don't get me wrong. Some of the current product is very good, but I still love a good interview and a firey comeback rather than a bunch of flips without emotion and or a match with just spots and no psychology. )
Everyone told me I did a fine job. I am not sure whether folks overlooked my mistakes or were just being nice. I have always been my worst critic in anything including life, so prehaps the people really meant it. Either way, I was glad to be a part of this fine show for a classy promotion. Everyone from the sound guy to the ring announcer was awesome and helpful to me. Afterwards, I thanked all of the wrestlers for allowing me to announce the show. I also thanked Mr. Hochman and Mr. Collins for allowing me to work the show. I shook everyone's hand and prepared to leave.
I met up with my wife who had been helping some with consessions and she was overjoyed to have met the King and getting her dad an autographed picture. She had lots of stories to tell and she so enjoyed talking to Dennis Condrey's wife and meeting Lawler and so many other nice folks at the show. On the way out the door, I picked up a few books (Wrestling at The Chase and Hardcore History) to add to my collection from the Highspots.com guys who were taping the show for DVD release. As I headed out, I really reminised about many things. For all the talk about today's wrestling, it was very nice to see an evening where I could be a fan and enjoy some legends in the business.
Tonight, I didn't see anyone at the show put their lips on another person's ass in the ring, a promoter exploit a death for an angle, or make the fans have to sit through a bunch of not-ready-for-prime-time divas matches while a great talker gets zero interview timeNo one had their water drugged before their match by the bosses' daughter.
My intelligence wasn't insulted. Storylines were built for the next show. The return date and main event was announced. Common sense was used. No sports entertainment, just pro wrestling tonight
Sometimes, a wrestling supercard is what you make it. For me, this show definately qualified. The past must be remembered in wrestling and life as well. After all, how can we get to where we are going, if we don't remember where we have been ?
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|© 2005-2007 All content contained here Copyright 2006 by James Guttman *** World Wrestling Insanity and ClubWWI are not affiliated with any wrestling promotion.|