This is probably the most bizarre ECPW (or any other company) ring crew story I’ll ever tell and I was probably never going to tell it to this extent, but it has been made public by the perpetrator.
Here is Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast featuring Bull James who delves into the details behind why he did it.
I have a different perspective: the guy who had to deal with the effects of Bull’s decision to take the ring post off of Gino Caruso’s ring truck (which was only secured by bungee cords since the ring was too big for the truck) and throw it into a ditch behind his wrestling school.
The Afternoon Before Showtime
It was the the first time we were going to do ring crew after my first main event and first match with a big name (Doink the Clown) on March 27, 2010. It was 3 weeks later because there were no events on Easter weekend and the weekend after was when Gino’s PA crew ran back-to-back events & they had their own ring.
Because it had been a while since I did a ring crew, I felt refreshed. It was the usual Brooklyn crew (Timothy Plazma, Creeper and I) going to Our Lady of Guadalupe, which was the most hated building on the circuit due to the multiple floors required to bring the ring down and how we had to work against gravity to bring the ring back up after.
We made good time arriving to the building, took out the canvas and brought post 1/post 2/post 3 into the church basement. I saw them pulling put the first side beam and told them to stop & bring in the 4th post.
Plazma said all 4 posts were in and we argued since I knew I saw 3. When he was animate about it, I thought he was ribbing me since he was on the truck. When I indulged him and counted 3 & it was not a joke, everyone’s heart sunk.
Gino had to be informed and neither of them wanted to, so I had to make the call. As soon as I told Gino, he hung up on me. Creeper asled what he said and I told him he literally just hung up.
Gino called me back furious since he wanted answers. I gave him to Creeper and Plazma, so they can get an earful. They were also technically responsible for the ring from the last event, yet I somehow got equal the amount of heat because I usually do the ring.
How the Show Went On
After a few phone calls were made, we found a spare post but the style of it was different than the ring we had so it probably wouldn’t fit. I convinced Gino to let us drive the truck to Staten Island, so we could at least see the post & possibly rent the whole ring if we had to. Turns out that the kid who owned this ring was pretty much a backyarder and lived at home with his mom, who was animate against renting out the ring.
After convincing the mom to let her son rent the ring, I received a phone call from Gino that he found the post behind the school. I’m not sure why he wouldn’t have checked there in the first place hours beforehand, but oh well. We had everybody set up the ring once the post arrived and I did my usual “count the ceiling tiles” finishing maneuver and “all was right with the world.”
Even though I took a bit of the heat, I can still say that Gino had to tuck his tail between his legs and apologize over it.
There were some changes made going forward. Thanks to this incident, Gino actually bought himself a cheap chain and padlock to secure his ring truck back. That didn’t stop someone from being able to crawl onto the truck for the next NY state show Gino ran to steal his padding for outside the ring per the NYS Athletic Commission’s requirements.
That’s when Gino decided to call the police after not finding them behind the school. There was a suspect (yes, Bull James), but it was never confirmed who actually took the padding since there were multiple suspects.
I guess the last question remains: do I have heat with Bull James? Nope, especially after he explained his reasoning behind it. In fact, I have to thank him in a way. That was my first wake-up call to see that I needed to expand beyond primarily wrestling for ECPW. I had others, but this was truly the start of me losing my mind over the nonsense I put up with while paying my dues at ECPW.