Upcoming Event: WrestlePro Rumble For the Blue on August 10

WrestlePro Rumble For the BlueWrestlePro returns with another event on a Thursday night, this time on August 10. They will present Rumble For the Blue, a fundraiser for the NYPD at 1435 Travis Avenue in Staten Island.

The event will feature matches with NYPD police officers and pro wrestlers Chris Payne & Chris Romano. On the opposite side of that, Chris Avery Queling will also be in action.

Other WrestlePro roster members & wrestlers currently scheduled to be in matches include:

  • WrestlePro Champion Bobby Wayward
  • WrestlePro Tag Team Champions CPA & Habib
  • Global Force Wrestling star Fallah Bahh
  • The Heavenly Bodies
  • “Bad Apple” Matt Macintosh
  • Anthony Bowens
  • “Man of Steel” Mike Verna
  • Maxwell Jacob Friedman
  • Taboo Crew
  • And many more!

Matches will be announced in the near future.

 

ATTN Wrestlers: People Remember More Than You Think They Do

I was inspired to write this post by an event I heard about and saw a YouTube video of this past weekend containing people I know, people I’ve heard of and people I don’t know.

There are 3 things that people remember the most about you: their first impression, your accolades/mistakes and the last thing you’ve done. It’s a lot easier to make a bad impression than a good one, even if you’re not trying to.

Every choice you make could impact your career, whether you don’t shake someone’s hand, take time out to give advice (rightly or wrongly) or start a fight in and out of the ring. That’s because you never know who’s watching or will become an influencer down the road.

The one that most commonly sticks out is when you feel personally good or bad about someone due to how you interact with them. I’ve done things like help out extra during events, lent people athletic tape, carried bags and been friendly in the locker room.

I’ve even lent a sock to Mick Foley on a show I wasn’t on… My sock got booked and I did not.

I’m sure I’ve done things to rub people the wrong way for various reasons, unintentionally of course. But it’s our actions that people see and our words they hear, not our intentions.

That’s where you have to be careful since the right thing in your brain could be the wrong one in reality. Sometimes, apologies aren’t enough to reverse an impression. Forgiveness is different then forgetting and I’ve let things go but still held onto the thought.

People from years ago have wronged me and I’ve moved on, but that memory comes flooding back once their name is mentioned or I’m in their presence.

And that’s what I remind myself of every time I interact with people.

4th of July Flashback: Big Ben Cromwell vs The Patriot in a Flag Match

The 4th of July is a day to celebrate everything America, including pro wrestling. That’s why I wanted to feature a Flag Match I had as Big Ben Cromwell against former WCW/WWF star The Patriot at UPWA Battle of Morris County on 5/10/14 in Morristown NJ.

The Flag Match is (typically) done to culminate the feud between a proud American and an evil foreigner from any country, even one that’s an ally of the US like Big Ben Cromwell’s motherland: England. That or it being a gimmick to attempt to reach a wider audience. There are 2 types of Flag Matches: one where the wrestler getting the winning fall gets to raise their flag or one where the wrestler who climbs up and takes down their flagpole first wins (like capture the flag).

This contest was the latter, unlike my only other Flag Match to date when the Japanese Assassin took on The Patriot was the former. Both times, the US flag was raised high at the end.

For this match, Cromwell hit The Patriot with a sneak attack, but the tables turned and Patriot attacked Cromwell. That was until an attempted bulldog was thwarted and Cromwell gained the advantage. Eventually after both got some advantages and some flag grabbing attempts, a double clothesline occurred that turned into a race for each wrestler’s respective flag. Cromwell slipped and that enabled The Patriot to win the match.

Chris Avery Queling’s History in 6-Way Pro Wrestling Matches

6 Way Pro Wrestling Match

There have been several small battle royals that I’ve been in with 7 or 8 wrestlers in certain companies (ECPW). Even more chaotic than that is the 6-way match in pro wrestling. That’s because 6 wrestlers battle at the same time with no restrictions. Typically, the first person to get a pinfall or submission will win.

On Thursday July 13 at WrestlePro’s Freedom Fest State Fair event, Chris Avery Queling will be in a 6-way match against:

  • Impact Wrestling star Mario Bokara who CAQ has wrestled once before in singles action as Big Ben Cromwell & faced off with in a recent rumble match
  • Dan Maff who has a very similar hard-hitting style to CAQ
  • Anthony Bowens who CAQ had an intense rivalry with and wrestled in singles competition earlier this year
  • Chris Payne who CAQ has teamed with on one occasion in a 10-man tag team match
  • Mike Verna who CAQ has never faced or teamed with before

This will not be my 1st 6-way match, as he has had several back when he was the Scranton Strangler. Here is a list of the 6-way pro wrestling matches that I’ve been a part of.

Scranton Strangler vs Brian XL vs The Drunken Swashbuckler vs The Revolting Blog vs The Lifeguard vs Habib From the Car Wash

My maiden 6-way match took place on Halloween night 2014 in Rahway, New Jersey. The Lifeguard replaced CPA who suffered an unfortunate head injury earlier in the day. This match started off fast and furious with a dive followed by the Scranton Strangler mask getting ripped off of my face. I wound up getting it back on, but upside down. After moving out of the way of a Revolting Blob dive, the match broke out into some action until the Strangler was on the bottom of a Tower of Doom… chokeslamming Brian XL and Swashbuckler who were superplexing Lifeguard. Right after, Habib delivered his knees to me for the win.

Scranton Strangler vs PJ Black vs Brian XL vs “The Lifeguard” Mike Del vs Bobby Wayward vs Johnny Howl

I replaced Shynron who was out with an injury on February 21, 2015 in Rahway NJ. This was an honor for me since this was one of PJ Black’s first independent matches after he left WWE, where he wrestled as Justin Gabriel. Mike Del was managed by former WWE diva Ashley Massaro, who did not get involved in the match. After getting a basketball thrown in my face and getting dived on by PJ Black & Brian XL, more action came about until another Tower of Doom where I helped deliver a stacked superplex. Afterwards, I mistimed a move and fell head first onto the ring stairs, so I was on the floor when Bobby Wayward made Johnny Howl submit via a stretch muffler.

Scranton Strangler vs Bobby Wayward vs Anthony Bowens vs CPA vs Delroy vs Nikos Rikos

This match happened outdoors on July 25, 2015 in Union NJ. At one point in the match, I pulled CPA in the ring by his throat, but got thwarted by him. I also remember wrestling around with Anthony Bowens (who will be in the 6-way match CAQ is in on July 13) and Delroy who I also remember double teaming Nikos Rikos on. Eventually, Bobby Wayward used the stretch muffler to make CPA submit.

Scranton Strangler vs Kyle Reynolds vs Starman vs Bobby Wayward vs Anthony Bowens vs Valerio LaMorte

The most recent 6-way match I took part in September 26, 2015 at the Edison Fall Family Spectacular. I know Valerio LaMorte had bought his spot from Nikos Rikos. I don’t remember many details of the match, but I know the Starman won via a brainbuster on Valerio LaMorte. This was actual the Scranton Strangler’s last match before he got transformed into Dr Acula on Raven’s Restler Rescue.

I expect the upcoming Chris Avery Queling vs Mario Bokara vs Dan Maff vs Mike Verna vs Chris Payne vs Anthony Bowens 6-way match to be the most exciting one I’ve been in yet. Come on down to the Freedom Fest State Fair in Allentown, New Jersey that opens at 5 for some carnival rides and then head to the wrestling that starts at 7 pm. Tickets are available at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/professional-wrestling-featuring-ryback-cody-rhodes-and-hornswoggle-tickets-34150804977.

Kicking Ass and Popping Cherries: I’ve Had Many Wrestlers’ 1st Matches

This past weekend at a private event, I wrestled the first match of one of the students at the Create-a-Pro NJ school. It made me wonder how many wrestlers I had the first match for. I went back into my match archive and counted them out.

I’m not going to count battle royals in this because so many wrestlers had their first matches in a battle royal & I don’t know everyone’s match status who I’ve ever royaled with. But I can say in non-battle royal situations, I’ve had the first singles, tag team or multi-person match of 16 different wrestlers… many of whom you’ve probably never heard of.

17 Wrestlers I’ve Had Their 1st Match With

1. Jordan King

The Japanese Assassin took on Jordan King (a student at the ECPW school who came after leaving the WUW school Johnny Rodz runs) at the Orange County Fair in Middletown NY on July 27, 2010. After wrestling 2 other matches back to back, I got a break and then had to wrestle King in front of a crowd of about 500 people. He was in shape & a weightlifter of some variety.

2. White Cheetah

White Cheetah is a special case, literally. He couldn’t have been older than 18 and was clearly enrolled at the ECPW school by his mom (who paid in full) to get him out of the house. He’s infamous for yelling “get off’a me!” and storming out of training one day when Prince Akkanatan applied a bottom wristlock after Cheetah wouldn’t listen. Here is his one and only match from ECPW Proving Ground on November 5, 2010 in Wallington NJ before he never came back to training even one time.

3.  Joey Scoggs

Another one and done from the ECPW school, I honestly have no idea where this guy came from. I think came up to the school for a couple of weeks before his triumphant debut and retirement from pro wrestling at an ECPW event on March 12, 2011 in Butler NJ. Here’s the match where 2 Japanese Assassins took on Scoggs and ECPW owner Gino Caruso. Scoggs is in the Butler singlet.

4. Dario (Chris Omega)

Known as Dario, he was billed as Chris Omega for his first match that happened at the BWF 3rd Anniversary Show on November 3, 2012 in the Bronx. I had never met Dario before this night nor his partner Bryant Starr, but I knew Fuego Calderon from my time at NDIW. This match opened the event, so take a watch… Dario is in the white.

5. Ricky Palmer

Ricky Palmer, who I claimed was the distant cousin of my former tag team partner WASP (William Alexander Samuel Palmer), was a dedicated student who trained at ECPW for a while before his debut match on March 30, 2013 in Boonton NJ in front of about 100 people against Big Ben Cromwell (who came out victorious).

Pro Wrestling Debut Matches6. Littlest Giant Sid

This was an odd night since I debuted at a joint event called Halloween Masquerade with Doc Diamond’s DWF and a company called BEAST on November 2, 2013 in West Berlin NJ (the non-Communist side obviously). I was originally slated to wrestle Chief Thunderhawk (I think that was his name), but he didn’t show up until the start of the main event in full Indian headdress.

I (as Big Ben Cromwell) wound up wrestling a 3-way match with Monster Factory alumni Major McClendon and Littlest Giant Sid, who was 4’11 and wore Sesame Street characters on his baggy shorts (including Cookie Monster) and submitted to the Major after hitting me with his finishing move in 2 minutes.

7. Lover Boy Lamar

Lover Boy Lamar was a student and/or relative trained by Big Daddy Ruthless, who is at least 450 lbs if not more and splashed me to win this match. They teamed up with Slim Whiskey and were seconded by a lady named Jai Strange to take on Big Ben Cromwell, Jack Molsonn & TNT Boom.

Since TNT Boom was a football player, we were managed by Coach Atlas… not Tony Atlas blowing a whistle though. This 6-man tag team match took place at WWWA on June 14, 2014 in Gilbertsville PA.

8. David Adams

He’s probably the most well known name of these first 17, David Adams is a ring announcer by trade. However, the booking committee at SWF (aka Guest Commissioner [and commentator] Dave D-Struction) ordered an 8-man tag team match after Fallah Bahh clobbered Adams with David’s partners being Team America (Jon Phoenix & Bo Jones) and The Wild Thing against Big Ben Cromwell, Magic, Sir Christopher Michaels & Muhhamed Hashmal (aka Habib From the Car Wash as an Arab stereotype). Here’s all the action including the spectacular ending.

9-12: 4 Jobbers

That’s right: the next 4 people are just jobbers who have no name. They’re literally labeled “4 jobbers” on the DVD PWS put out for their Wrestle Bowl 2014 event that happened on November 22 of that year. This was an 8-man elimination tag team match featuring the Scranton Strangler teaming up with Philip Simon II (now Buster Jackson), Damian Gibbs & Beefcake Charlie in what was a squash where the jobbers jobbed like a jobber jobbing on the job.

13. Malcolm Moss

Now a member of CAQ’s friend Bobby Wayward’s JOB Security, Malcolm had his 1st match at a Create-a-Pro Wrestling birthday party on May 3, 2015 in Hicksville NY. The main event of the birthday party was a 10-man tag team match featuring Big Ben Cromwell, Jared Evans, Vinny Spano, Max (now Bear) Bronson & Malcolm taking on Kai Katana, Damien Gibbs, Beefcake Charlie, Max Caster & Johnny Clash.

14. Buckwheat Willis

Buckwheat Willis was a student at Create-a-Pro NJ who made his debut at the 1st Annual NJ Taco Festival on September 12, 2015 in Augusta. The funny thing is that Willis was not backstage a few minutes before showtime when the announcer needed everyone’s name. Since he was not present, I thought his hair looked like the character from the Little Rascals who I thought was Alfalfa but it was actually Buckwheat. So his name was born and the Scranton Strangler strangled him.

15. Elijah Santos

Elijah Santos, who wrestles as Cronin, was also a student who floated his way to Create-a-Pro NJ for a brief bit. He also inspired a past blog post of mine about match scripts. Here are highlights from that match, which also happens to be the 1st time Chris Avery Queling was in action (making Santos CAQ’s 1st victim) on April 16, 2016 at a WrestlePro event in Union NJ.

16. Emi

Currently a valet at Create-a-Pro Wrestling, Emi had her first match at a birthday party at the CAP school in Hicksville NY on May 14, 2016. Emi teamed up with Francis Kip Stevens, Nikki Adams, Beefcake Charlie & Johnny Clash to take on Chris Avery Queling, TJ Warren, Bryce Donovan, Izzy McKenna & “Grammar Cop” John Phoenics in the main event that Emi’s team won.

17. Adam Bizzare

This match inspired this whole blog post since it only happened last week on June 17, 2017 in Rahway NJ. He’s currently a student at the Create-a-Pro NJ school who lasted less than 5 minutes before getting defeated by CAQ just like everyone else in WrestlePro.

As more wrestlers pop their cherry against me, so stay tuned for #17 and beyond!

Upcoming Event: WrestlePro at the Freedom Fest State Fair in Allentown NJ on July 13

WrestlePro Allentown NJ July 13 2017WrestlePro will be having another Thursday night event. This time, it’s at the Freedom Fest State Fair at the Horse Park of New Jersey (626 Route 524) in Allentown on July 13th.

Chris Avery Queling will be in action in a Sensational 6-Way Match against former opponents Impact Wrestling star Mario Bokara & Anthony Bowens, Dan Maff, Mike Verna and Chris Payne. CAQ’s best friend Bobby Wayward will defend the WrestlePro Championship against Impact Wrestling star KM Kevin Matthews. Both matches should be intense.

Also scheduled to wrestle are three former WWE superstars. Here are their scheduled matches:

  • ROH World Champion Cody Rhodes & Pat Buck vs The Heavenly Bodies
  • Ryback vs John Silver
  • Swoggle & WrestlePro Trios Champions The Beach Bums vs JOB Security

There are also several other matches on tap. The scheduled contests so far include:

  • 1st Annual Freedom Fest Battle Royal
  • ROH star Flip Gordon vs Johnny Clash
  • Team Espanikos vs WrestlePro Tag Team Champions Habib & CPA and Kip Francis Stevens
  • Liza Viero vs Kasey Catal in a Create-a-Pro Women’s Showcase Match
  • An open challenge made by Shawn Donovan
  • MCW’s The Dixon Line (Joe Keys & Rob Locke) in action

The Freedom Fest State Fair offers free parking, carnival rides, entertainment, attractions and admission for kids under 36″. The matches will take place from 7-10 pm, while the fair itself opens at 5 pm on Thursday July 13. All ages are welcome and tickets for the wrestling event start at just $25 on EventBrite.

Watch Your Language? Profanity in Professional Wrestling

Pro Wrestling ProfanityA big topic in wrestling has been the advent of the PG era in WWE and how things would be better if it could go back to the edgier Attitude Era. When the wrestlers could curse and the situations were more risque.

Whether that’s true or not is irrelevant since I’m focusing on if profanity has a place in pro wrestling. I’ll list a couple of reasons why there isn’t a place, a couple of reasons why there is a place and my thoughts on the matter.

Say Heck No to Profanity

There are a few reasons why profanity should not be in wrestling, the first one being the influence on children. Whether wrestling is PG, TV-14 or MA, kids will wind up watching the product because it’s superheroes come to life.

The next one is mainly for bigger companies with TV time: advertisers. Some companies might not consider spending their ad dollars on a product that contains lewdness and/or profanity.

The last one I have is the fact that there’s so little profanity when compared to words and actions that you can easily edit yourself and not use foul language.

Say F*CK Yes to Profanity

There are a few reasons why profanity should be in wrestling, the first one being realism. Adult men and women get into situations where profanity is used and it might seem childish to not see the maximum emotion when there’s a grudge.

Secondly would be the same reason as the second reason against profanity: advertisers. Some companies might not consider spending their ad dollars on a product that seems too kid friendly.

Lastly, it opens up different story arcs. There are some things that can’t be explored fully without profanity, whether it’s a really bad beatdown of a good guy or a torrid love affair.

My Thoughts

I personally have never used profanity. My original trainer always said that profanity was a cop out and that you couldn’t truly get over if you had to rely on it. I have to agree with that to a large extent since profanity was only really prominent in wrestling for a short while, though it’s when wrestling was at its height in the US.

I also do feel that profanity used on rare occasions makes things more special. It represents the escalation of a feud to another level once lewdness and curse words start flying. The same thought process goes when there’s a rare instance when somebody bleeds or (formerly) when a specialty match was scheduled once in a blue moon like a cage match.

We also live in a society where children use profanity or are at the very least exposed to it through their parents or other role models. Saying words like damn, bitch, sucks and ass (didn’t even write that out in any particular order to be funny either) are more commonplace on TV shows and the Internet. So the profanity is now up another notch to f*ck, sh*t, racist slang and sexual jargon, which I think is inappropriate for a wrestling audience with kids.

Should pro wrestling have profanity? My answer is “it depends” since different companies will cater to different audiences. I personally think it’s not needed since stories can be told in different ways in wrestling through actions and not words. Some gruffer language and gestures can be used for realism, but not outright profanity on a TV-MA show especially if you know kids are going to partake.

What I Learned: Justin Roberts’ Best Seat in the House

Justin Roberts Best Seat in the HouseThe books I typically read are about the careers of pro wrestlers. However, other personnel are also traveling the same grueling schedule including backstage management, referees and ring announcers.

And former WWE ring announcer Justin Roberts is no different, as his book Best Seat in the House details vividly. Between TV tapings, house shows and international tours, he details how much travel there is, along with some rough conditions.

With that being said, here’s what I took away from Justin Roberts’s story from childhood superfan to ring announcer for local Chicago & Arizona area indies, an AWA revamp run by Dale Gagne, Toughman and WWE.

Bullying

The big stir that Best Seat in the House created focused on Roberts being bullied by a number of wrestlers, most prominently JBL and Chris Benoit. This went as far as his passport being stolen and being told to hurt himself.

I was bullied in my youth and a little bit in wrestlinh, so I know how it feels. Most of it in wrestling was in jest, but some of it is put of spite and ego.

Networking/Following Up

Not getting myself out there easily is one of my weaknesses, buy Justin Roberts did this to a fault. Since he was young, he was able to talk to people to get what he wanted.

He’s been making connections with people since before high school & kept sending tapes and trying to talk to anybody from WCW amd WWF to get a foot in the door. He even worked with ring announcer Gary Michael Cappetta on his book tour to get into wrestling.

Other Key Takeaways

  • How to cope with losing your passion at work, specifically your dream job
  • Having a Plan B in place, so you don’t feel trapped in one place
  • Dealing with a lack of communication from management & feeling like you have to read their minds most of the time
  • Trying to move up in a company but it not working out due to outside forces

Upcoming Event: WrestlePro on Saturday June 10 in Keyport NJ

WrestlePro Keyport NJ June 10 2017For the first time in a year, WrestlePro returns to the St Joseph RC Church (376 Maple Place) in Keyport NJ!

Chris Avery Queling will be in action on this night against Impact Wrestling star Fallah Bahh. CAQ and Fallah have wrestled each other 2 other times: for UWA in 2010 at a street fair in Passaic NJ and in 2014 at the Scott Epstein Memorial Show in Garfield NJ. CAQ was unsuccessful both times.

Also already announced is a contest between Lucha Underground star Brian Cage and WrestlePro standout Anthony Bowens in a battle of muscle men who can do phenomenal things in the ring.

If you’re a fan of hardcore, then you’ll enjoy a grudge match between Dan Maff and Pat Buck in what is being deemed Maff’s Madness. The last Maff’s Madness match involved loads of weapons and ended with Maff & Starman bleeding.

Former ECW tag team The FBI (Little Guido and Tracy Smothers) are slated to take on Taboo Crew, while former WWE superstar Kevin Fertig (fka Kevin Thorn & Mordecai) will face Beefcake Charlie in a battle of the big men.

Also announced is a match between The Heavenly Bodies & The Apple Corps to determine the #1 contenders for the WrestlePro Tag Team Championship in what could be the sleeper match of the night.

Other wrestling stars scheduled to appear and/or be in action include:

  • “Bad News” Wade Barrett
  • Hardcore Holly
  • The Shockmaster
  • Rene Dupree
  • Simon Gotch of Vaudevillians fame
  • Savio Vega
  • Impact Wrestling stars KM & Mario Bokara
  • Keyport’s own Coach D representing Team Espanikos
  • WrestlePro Champion Bobby Wayward
  • New WrestlePro Tag Team Champions CPA & Habib
  • Chris Payne
  • MCW star Rayo
  • And more!

Doors open for a meet & greet at 5:30 and the matches begin at 7:30. Tickets are available at http://wrestleproonline.com/61017.html.

Coming Soon: CAQ Property Of Psych Ward Shirts

CAQ Property Of ShirtChris Avery Queling merchandise is finally here! This will be the debut T-shirt that’s a play off of the popular “Property Of” shirts.

It will be as pictured, black text on white. They will be available in sizes small through 5XL and is the perfect way to show your support for Chris Avery Queling.

Pricing will start at $20 per shirt (plus shipping if applicable) and can be ordered through directly contacting bigbencromwell@yahoo.com. They will also be at events CAQ is a part of. PayPal is also accepted.

This is the first merchandise CAQ has ever had by himself, so it’s a piece of history. Previously, there was a Monsters Island T-shirt that sold very well in early 2016 and a Big Ben Cromwell 8×10 that sold less well (100 were ordered, there are at least 85 remaining).

Update: These shirts are now available. Feel free to reach out to order yours.