The end of Evolve Wrestling deals a major blow to Meet & Greet community

EVOLVE Wrestling Announce Core Roster For Summer Events ...

Evolve Wrestling, an independent wrestling promotion that frequently ran in Queens, NY, has folded.

I highly encourage you to read EVOLVE OR DIE: THE HISTORY & END OF EVOLVE WRESTLING by Case Lowe for a full retrospection of Evolve Wrestling. It covers the slight rise and tremendous fall of a controversial Indy promotion.

The goal of today’s post is to offer a different perspective of Evolve shutting its doors: the negative impact it will have on the Meet & Greet community, specifcally those in the greater New York area.

The Pre and Post show meet & greets at Club LaBoom were a staple of any Evolve NY show. Dozens of fans would pack an incredibly tight hallway to score autographs and photo ops with the futures of the wrestling business — often at little to no cost.

Speaking from personal experience, I managed to meet several wrestlers before they ultimately signed with NXT or AEW (including the new NXT Double Champion in Keith Lee). I also managed to meet Dick Togo, a rare name in the United States.

Evolve also partnered with PROGRESS Wrestling a few years ago and, while that show ended up being a total nightmare, the meet & greet was mostly a success.

But their biggest – and last – partnership was with NXT, which opened the door to meeting current NXT stars like The Undisputed Era, WALTER, Rhea Ripley, Keith Lee, Johnny Gargano, Tommaso Ciampa, Candace LaRae, and others.

The Meet & Greet community was thrilled to gain access to bonafide WWE talent. If we’re speaking truthfully, it was probably the main reason why so many people flocked to Evolve shows during their last days.

Evolve will be sorely missed by our community. Here’s hoping that another Indy will rise from the ashes and give us an opportunity to meet future stars of NXT/WWE and AEW.

Legends of the Ring postpones upcoming June show due to COVID-19

Here’s a statement from the Legends of the Ring Facebook page:

Dear Loyal LOTR Fans,

Hoping this msg finds you well and as healthy as you have always been.

With the Covid-19 pandemic reaching its projected peak in the next few months, we have been working hard behind the scenes to keep everyone healthy and safe. LOTR has made the decision to follow the recommendations of our government for the safety of the Wrestlers and more importantly the Loyal LOTR fans. At this time we have decided to postpone the June show which will be pushed back to Oct 3rd. We will be posting updates as needed. All tickets are valid and will be transferred for Oct show and we are in the process of reconfirming the talent.

Thank you as always for you’re patronage. Stay healthy and safe!

Big Event 19 announced for November 14, limited Admission Fast Passes available; several guests announced

The Big Event will return to the LaGuardia Plaza Hotel for its 19th installment on November 14, 2020. Let’s get to some key points:

  • Big Event is selling limited Admission Fast Passes that include an autograph from the Boogeyman. These bad boys are limited to only 100 customers and are currently on sale for $40 (plus change). Big Event claims these passes are nearly sold out. You can purchase the Fast Pass here.
  • Joining the Boogeyman at Big Event 19: Mantaur (Damage365 Radio), Hardcore Holly & Sunny (Fan City Sports), Zeus (Big Event NY), and Matt Morgan, Celeste, & Amy Webber (Glamour Under the Stars)
  • The Pre-Order page will return shortly!

My Big Event 18 Report!

March 7, 2015, is a milestone moment for yours truly: my first-ever wrestling convention The Big Event VIII. This show was headlined by Rey Mysterio, Jr. and featured major names such as Ric Flair, Dusty Rhodes, The Dudley Boyz, Magnum T.A., and Samoa Joe (amongst others). It was a wonderful experience and I found myself counting down the days to my next convention.

Fast-forward to March 7, 2020, to The Big Event XVIII. This show was headlined by The Undertaker and featured major names such as Bret Hart, Braun Strowman, and Lita (amongst others). This, too, was a wonderful experience and part of me is amazed that I’m still going strong 5 years later. Thanks to this hobby, I’ve made some great friends and met legendary wrestlers and various celebrities. It’s been a fantastic 5 years and here’s to many, many more!

Now with all that being said…

Let’s get to the report!
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Chuck Palumbo cancels Big Event 18 appearance due to Coronavirus

Another Big Event 18 attendee has pulled out due to concerns of the Coronavirus outbreak:

Big Event 18 Update: I’ve got some unfortunate news to report. Chuck Palumbo will NOT be in attendance at the Big Event tomorrow. I received this text message this am
“Nick, I’ve been trying to weigh out this trip with the Coronavirus thing.

After speaking with my family, I decided to pass on the trip. Between the 12 hours of flight time, and all of the people we will contact during the convention/signing I don’t want to take the risk.”

I have been trying to work on a reconciliation throughout the entire day involving a flight change and/or additional compensation and neither was able to change the fact that Chuck will not be able to make it tomorrow. All of my other guests INCLUDING Pat Tanaka will be there however.

Customers who purchased Chuck items will be able to use that for credit tomorrow for other guests or be refunded in full on Monday am.

I apologize for the inconvenience and will do my best to get Chuck rescheduled (for the 3rd time!) for another show this year.

Greg Gange cancels Big Event 18 appearance

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Via Eric Simms:

I am saddened to announce that due to a real life medical emergency ( gall stone attack ) that Greg Gagne appearances this weekend at big event and Wrestlefest 2 are unfortunately canceled/ postponed to a future date. His doctor has advised him not to fly for fear of a future gall stone attack which could land him back in the hospital.

What does this mean for all those that participated in pre sales.

1. Exchange for killer bees or mr hughes

2. Greg has agreed to sign the photos that i have for him. If you really want an autograph and trust me to get the pictures to him in a timely fashion so he can sign them and return it to me in a timely fashion we can do that.

3. I can refund your money at my table at the event that your going to.

In any case you will be taken care of and not to worry.

When you book the golden era guys of the 70s and 80s you run the risk of last minute medical issues as they are older and health issues arise.

Thank you for understanding and lets have a great weekend of shows

Terry Funk cancels Big Event 18 appearance; Nzo added

Terry Funk has canceled his Big Event 18 appearance due to health reasons. Terry is one of the nicest, friendliest wrestlers that I have ever met and I’m certainly keeping him in my thoughts and prayers. The Funker will be missed at Big Event 18 but here’s hoping we see him come our way soon.

Meanwhile, Nzo (formerly Enzo Amore in WWE and NXT) has been added.

A return to form? Wrestling Universe, Shine, and Evolve 145

This past Saturday was a return to form for yours truly. I haven’t been as active as I’d like to be in this hobby for a number of reasons (lack of desirable names, funds, and time are all contributors), so I was absolutely thrilled to devote an entire Saturday to get combos. I did not get everyone I wanted but, hey, there’s always next time, right? Right?!? Right. Anyways, let’s get to it:

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Last-minute Big Event additions, cancellations, and notes

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We are ~24 hours away from the Big Event 18. The LaGuardia Plaza Hotel will be an absolute madhouse and I’ve noticed some last minute additions, cancellations, and some important notes re: the Deadman:

  • James EllsworthGillberg, Little Boogeyman, Kevin Sullivan, and Andrew Anderson were all recently added
  • Amy Webber and Joy Giovanni have been re-scheduled for November due to the Coronavirus outbreak
  • An important note about Undertaker tickets:

For The Undertaker come as soon as you can to pick up your pre purchased physical tickets. They will be only handed out after you pick up your admission..
Tickets can be picked up with your drivers license, state ID or passport.
The tickets are numbered.
Photo ops will be first. Autographs will follow the completion of photo ops. Starting at noon.
We will have Undertaker photos, boots, hats and urns for sale.
We will have 100 FAST PASS tickets for sale for $40 first come first serve.
Regardless of your ticket number this will get you to the front of the line. If you purchased a photo opp AND autograph this FAST PASS will get you to the front of BOTH lines! This will save you HOURS of time! These will sell out!
We do have a few autograph and photo op tickets left for sale. $200 CASH first come first serve. These will sell out also if you are needing more tickets


My Bronx Tale

I always look forward to the last weekend in January because I’m guaranteed to meet the New York Yankees of past and present. MAB Celebrity Services hosts a Yankee-centric show (Bronx Tale, Pinstripe Parade, etc.) that are typically loaded with talent.

This show was the exception.

The only current member of the team was its manager, Aaron Boone, who appeared in 2018 (and maybe last year though I can’t say for certain). Legitimate legends and/or Hall of Famers like Reggie Jackson, Dave Winfield, Tim Raines, and Paul O’Neill were scheduled to appear but they’re the definition of “Virgil-esque.”

Gary Sheffield was a fresh name but ultimately canceled. Lou Pinella was another fresh name but his prices were completely out of whack; speaking of out of whack prices, Luis Sojo and Jose Rijo were $40 a pop for photo ops!

Saturday morning was going to be incredibly, incredibly light for me: photo ops with Andruw Jones and Lee Mazelli with Bobby Shantz on Sunday.

So let’s get to this bite-sized report.
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