SIX NATIONS — The doors to the Gathering Place by the Grand had tons of Pro-Wrestling fans lined up an waiting outside for the Six Nations Slam to begin as the nights main event last Friday evening.
The evening brought together some of the best wrestling talent in Ontario and beyond as the likes of Gabriel Fuerza squared off with the golden Gun Mark Wheeler, Colt Cabana versus Pretty Ricky Wildey and Sabu and Super Genie threw down with the King of Pain Warhed. A special guest appearance was made by WWE Legend The Honky Tonk Man throughout the night for fans as well.
“We’ve been bringing these events around this area for about a year and a half,” said SKM Promotion Coordinator Shane Maracle. “It was always my goal to bring a show here and there’s wrestling fans everywhere.”
With the sport beginning in the 1920’s and being viewed as a legitimate sport, the sport has garnered fan bases that have been thriving for decades.
Professional wrestling did however become identifies with modern theatrics and moved away from being a showcase of true competition in the 1930’s and often involved “match fixing.” The WWE began over forty years later in 1979 in South Yarmouth, Massachusetts in the USA. But the packed venue for the evening showed that the love for wrestling has stayed strong in its reach to Canada.
Maracle said that he was humbled by the willingness of wrestling talent that wanted to come and compete at the venue.
“It was amazing, even just to get those emails like ‘yeah I’ll come do it,’ so it’s been a good night,” he said. “To see people lined up outside the building was insane.’
Maracle explained that for the evening, the hosts dedicated the event to the memories of Al Porter, Tor “Thor Hart” Larviere and Mario D’Eri. As he hopes to make the event in Six Nations the main wrestling event out of all of the others throughout the year, Maracle said that the respect coming from the community was abundant throughout the night.
“There has been so much negativity lately that it’s good to see these families out smiling again and it meant a lot to me to dedicate the show to one of my good friends. Alan and I were wrestling fans together and to have the crowd react the way they did was something else. I always say that wrestling fans can be boisterous and opinionated, but they are one of the most respectful crowds I’ve ever dealt with. When we did the ten bell salute for those we dedicated the event in memory of, and raised Al’s picture and he’s not even a wrestler, they stayed quiet and were respectful.”
The emotional moment hit a bit harder as well when the crowd applauded, Maracle explained. He also noted that the crowd didn’t diminish over the course of the night and many visitors seemed keen on reserving their seats even just to visit the washroom.
As the pro-wrestling events have continued to garner large crowds and fill their venues, keep an eye open for more to come.