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Pain and PassionANNOUNCEMENT: Heath McCoy’s book, Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling will soon be available in stores and online.

For media: we would appreciate receiving a copy or tear sheet of any review or mention that you may publish.

“I couldn’t put the book down . . . Brutally honest, its depth, getting into so many of the key personalities and stories, is amazing.”
— Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer

A tale of family and of human tragedy, Heath McCoy’s bestselling Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling (ECW Press, October 2007) is now revised, expanded, and available for the first time to wrestling fans in the United States.

Pain and Passion is the history of Calgary Stampede Wrestling, a Canadian, home-grown wrestling promotion that had a tremendous influence on the pro wrestling industry. The mid-west Canadian city of Calgary, in the province of Alberta, has long been a hallowed cradle of North American wrestling. Calgary’s Stampede Wrestling gave birth to mat kings of yore like Gene Kiniski and Superstar Billy Graham, to international idols like Bret “The Hitman” Hart, the British Bulldogs, and Chris Benoit. 

In Pain and Passion, McCoy takes readers through the evolution of Stu Hart’s Calgary promotion, from its meagre beginnings in the 1940s, its peak in the 1980s, and its fall as Vince McMahon’s World Wrestling Entertainment mowed down the competition and changed the face of wrestling forever. McCoy delves into the personal and professional saga of Stu Hart’s small, family-run business at a time when the Hart family’s personal involvement kept the innocence and enthusiasm for the sport alive. The Hart family defied the conglomerate, corporate mentality that the McMahon family represents today, making Calgary Stampede Wrestling a staple of Canadian pop culture.

With the recent, tragic death of Calgary Stampede alumnus Chris Benoit, the nearly-destroyed Hart family has once again been placed in the media eye. McCoy deftly resurrects the iconic status that Stu Hart’s family once enjoyed amongst wrestling fans the world over. Pain and Passion is a wild blood-on-the-mat saga, and a powerful drama that will captivate readers the world over.

Heath McCoy is a pop culture reporter and rock critic for the Calgary Herald. A lifelong wrestling fan, McCoy won a gold award at the 2005 Western Canadian Magazine Awards for his article on Stampede Wrestling, entitled “Butchers, Stompers & Cheats,” that appeared in the Calgary Herald’s Swerve magazine. McCoy is also co-authoring the upcoming ECW Press title Benoit: Wrestling with the Horror that Destroyed a Family and Crippled a Sport (November 2007).

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Book Details:
Title:                     Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling
Author:                 Heath McCoy
Publisher:             ECW Press, distributed by IPG in the US and by Jaguar Book Group in Canada
Publication:         October 2007
Price:                    $19.95 U.S. / $22.95 CDN
Specifications:    6 x 9’’, 336pp, paper, 65 b&w photos
ISBN-13:              978-1-55022-787-1