THE MANIA BEHIND ISPWMANIA
MARCH 27TH IN FREEHOLD, NJ
By: Tommy Fierro
Later this month I will be presenting ISPW’s biggest event of the year, ISPWMANIA. The event takes place on Saturday, March 27th in Freehold, NJ at the 3-2 Count Athletic Training Facility, located at 323A Fairfield Road at 7PM. This show will take place the day before WrestleMania 26, which for wrestling fans is without question the biggest weekend of the year. Since WrestleMania is taking place far away from New Jersey, I wanted to give wrestling fans a special show to jump start their biggest weekend of the year for anyone that lives on the East Coast. With ROH and other hardcore wrestling fans’ promotions not running in the area that weekend, I wanted to stack the deck for ISPW’s biggest show of the year and give each and every one of them something to look forward to.
“Dirty” Dutch Mantell will be making a super rare appearance wrestling that evening in a Legends Match against The Original Doink The Clown, Matt Borne. I believe this is the first time Mantell has ever wrestled in New Jersey. When planning ISPWMANIA, I wanted to make this show stand out and be totally different than any other indie show in this area that wrestling fans have seen in recent years. I wanted a few names on the show that wrestling fans don’t get the opportunity to see wrestle live in this area. Dutch Mantell was someone that fit that role perfectly. His opponent, Matt Borne, will be debuting his new character “Reborne Again” that evening as well. When do you ever get the chance to see a match live with two legends like this compete against each other? It’s just unique and different, which is something I was going for with this line-up. This match alone is a special treat to hardcore wrestling fans out there.
Speaking of bringing in names that you don’t get the chance to see compete on a regular basis live, Bill DeMott will be making his return to the ring at ISPWMANIA as well that evening. The first wrestling show I ever ran back in Rutherford High School in the early 90’s featured Bill as Crash The Terminator against Jim Powers. I have always been a huge fan of Bill’s work and I’m very excited to have “Hugh Morrus” making his return to the ring at ISPWMANIA on March 27th. Here is another example of having a unique name on the show that is never up this way. Bill will be taking on “The Detonator” Rick Fuller on this show. For those that haven’t seen Fuller wrestle as of late, he’s unreal. He’s not the same Rick Fuller you might remember back in WCW as one of Goldberg‘s victims of his winning streak. Fuller has gone on to compete in New Japan Pro Wrestling since and is in unreal shape. He looks like a modern day version of The Undertaker, his look is that good. Both of these big men can go and this is once match I’m really looking forward to seeing.
Another match I’m really excited to see at ISPWMANIA is a tag team match pitting The Logan Brothers against Nunzio & Tony Mamaluke, who will be reforming The Full Blooded Italians on this show. For anyone that hasn’t seen The Logan Brothers compete yet, you are in for a treat. They remind me of a young version of The Rockers and will no doubt be huge superstars in this business one day. If you were to tell me today that WWE signed them to a deal, it wouldn’t shock me in the least bit. This is also a special treat for old ECW fans as well, as the former ECW Tag Team Champions will be reuniting for the first time in several years at ISPWMANIA. This match will no question be off the hook.
Speaking of old ECW fans, former ECW Original and Tag Team Champion Danny Doring will be in action at ISPWMANIA as well against former WCW/WWE Superstar Big Vito. Doring recently called out the cast of MTV’s Jersey Shore in ISPW and the challenge was answered by Big Pookie, who claimed he was the boyfriend of Snookie. Doring played along at first and even fist pumped with Pookie before making quick work of him at ISPW’s Seasons Beatings show. Pookie has now hired the services of Big Vito to get revenge for him on Doring at ISPWMANIA. These two veterans will have a great match!
Former WWF Tag Team Champion and two-time ISPW World Champion Head Shrinker Samu will be making his return to ISPW against one of today’s hottest up and coming stars on the independents, Chase Del Monte. Samu has always been one of my favorite workers, his work is so good and solid. This match has a great story as well. Here you have this huge Samoan monster up against a young high-flying talent. This match is a great opportunity for Chase to show the wrestling world and the boys in the back that he can hang with the big dogs. A contrast in styles for sure, but that’s what makes this match so intriguing.
The current ISPW Tri-State Champion “The Platinum Poppa” Rob Eckos will be defending his title against former five-time ISPW World Heavyweight Champion and ISPW Hall of Famer “Mr. Main Event” Ace Darling. Eckos claims he’s the new blood of ISPW and Darling is yesterday’s news. I’m really looking forward to seeing this match as well. Darling, in my opinion, is one of the top independent wrestler to ever come out of New Jersey. I always scratch my head and wonder how he never had a big run in this business. He was that good. He still is. As far as Eckos, he has “WWE” written all over him and I would be shocked if he didn’t become a star in this business one day. Having Darling challenge Eckos for the Tri-State Championship at ISPW’s biggest show of the year really elevates the title in my opinion, and Eckos as well.
A year-long grudge will finally come to a head at ISPWMANIA when ISPW General Manager “Mr. Personality” Nicholas Nice will take on Baby Hughie in a Street Fight Match. Last year at ISPW’s return show, twenty-one year old Smith James came into Nice’s office looking for the opportunity to compete in ISPW. Nice ordered him to purchase a ticket to the event, which James did. Nice then picked James out of the audience and told the ISPW fans that he could make anyone a star. He told James if he wanted to have a chance to be in ISPW he’d have to dress up like a baby. James, wanting the chance to compete in ISPW, did just that. Since then, Nice has treated James horribly and has made a fool out of him time and time again. To the surprise of Nice, James has taken the “Baby Hughie” character and made it very popular at the ISPW Arena. Hughie will finally have the chance to earn his contract if he can beat Nice at ISPWMANIA. On top of that, if Nice loses the match, he’s fired! Really great story here that will finally unfold at ISPW’s biggest show of the year.
Speaking of a year-long feud, that brings us to the main event. Judas Young and “The King of The World” Danny Inferno have been feuding for the last year over the ISPW World Heavyweight Championship. Some of their matches have included a TLC Match and a 60 Minute Iron Man match that Pro Wrestling Illustrated called the greatest match in the history of ISPW. Inferno is so obsessed with the title that he faked his own retirement last year just to screw with Young’s mind. He recently did the same to Crowbar, who was coming up the ranks in ISPW as the top star. Inferno was the mysterious “Him” character that was playing mind games with Crowbar for the better part of 2009. Inferno has done a great job of playing mind games with both guys and has recently hired Sunny, the Original Diva of the WWE, to be his manager. There has also been some recent problems between Young and Crowbar as well. This will all come to a head at ISPWMANIA on March 27th in Freehold, NJ when the three will compete in a Triple Threat Match for the ISPW World Heavyweight Championship.
Former WWE announcer and recent ROH hire Kevin Kelly will also be at ISPWMANIA as the Special Guest Host of the show. I am a huge fan of WWE’s concept of the weekly guest hosts on Monday Night Raw and thought it would be cool to have a guest host at our biggest show of the year. I have always been a big fan of Kevin’s and think he’s one of the most talent individuals involved in our industry. It will be very interesting to see what Kevin has in store for both the ISPW fans and wrestlers come March 27th.
I’m also a huge fan of American Idol and wanted to some how incorporate it into ISPWMANIA. I have Antonella Barba, who was one of the top twelve finalist in Season 6 of American Idol, to sing the National Anthem on March 27th. American Idol is so hip and so pop-culture and I think it’s really cool to have it in a small way be a part of this event.
We are also doing a Fan Fest the afternoon of ISPWMANIA at 3-2 Count and doors open at 12 Noon for that. All of the wrestlers appearing on the evening card will be on hand to sign autographs and take photos with the fans. We are also going to have three live matches in the afternoon during the Fan Fest as well, which is going to be really cool. Out of all the Fan Slam conventions I ran throughout the years, I never had matches taking place during the actual convention. Should be really cool. We are also going to have a live Who’s Slamming Who broadcast being taped during the Fan Fest, along with the ISPW Hall of Fame Class of 2010 inductions, and many more activities as well.
The morning will kick-off at 9 AM for local independent wrestlers who will have the chance to take part in a Fantasy Training Camp with Bill DeMott, Dutch Mantell, Big Vito, and Head Shrinker Samu as the trainers. This is a MUST for any local wrestlers that live in the area to learn from some of the true greats of our industry. I will be on hand to scout some talent for some future ISPW events, and Kevin Kelly might be stopping by the camp to do the same.
So as you can tell, I’m very excited about this event. I hope after reading this, you will be as well and head down to Freehold, NJ on March 27th and be a part of it. It’s a great way to kick-off your WrestleMania weekend. It’s going to be a really cool deal, I assure you that.
Tickets are available now by heading over to: ISPWLive.com
You can watch several promotional videos for ISPWMANIA at: YouTube.com/ISPWRingside