For those of you who aren’t familiar, WrestleCon is kind of like Axxess on a budget with everyone running their own booth. The key differences though are you have a TON of indy wrestlers, plus dozens of legends. You pay a flat rate to get in ($33) and then each autograph and picture you want is an additional charge (I think the most I saw for a regular guest was $50 but most are less than half of that). For the sake of finances, I only paid for a handful of pictures.
Some of these are people I’ve been wanting to meet for as long as I can remember so these are a pretty big deal for me.
Some of the biggest hands I’ve ever seen, and I have some big ones myself.
Every bit as intimidating as you would expect. I said they were one of my favorites when I was a kid. Ax: “WHAT DO YOU MEAN WERE? WE BETTER STILL BE!” He smiled after.
Probably the nicest guy I met. Very friendly and talked for probably a good three minutes about baseball, my hometown being an old stop for him and UK basketball. I even got to wear the crown. Lawler is every bit as friendly and quick witted as he comes off on TV and he was a blast to talk to. On a random note, Lawler was doing a podcast later that day with Cleveland Indians closer Chris Perez, who was there with him. I’m a lifelong Indians fan so this was a major bonus.
This was overcoming a childhood fear. Vader beat Sting. No one could beat Sting!
The camera doesn’t do her justice. I know she was hot when she was wrestling but my goodness she’s aged very well. Absolutely stunning and one of those people who kinds of oozes sexiness if that makes sense. On a side note, her handler was a horrible jerk. Lita was signing and the line was a bit long so I asked how long she would be signing. He glares at me and says he doesn’t know (that’s a pretty important thing to be missing). Then when I was paying, he literally snatched the money out of my hand. None of the others were like that all day so it’s not like it can’t be done.
Speaking of the camera not doing justice, here’s what I saw when I left Lawler:
That would be Brooke Tessmacher, Kelly Kelly, Christy Hemme and Candace Michelle. Kelly has some of the most hypnotizing eyes you’ll ever see and again, the camera does not do her justice. The other three are gorgeous but Kelly was just on another level.
And finally, Tito Santana:
My all time favorite midcarder and, before New Day, the original Kofi Kingston. Very nice guy.
Those are just the ones I took pictures with. In addition to those, I said hi to/chatted with the following. Most of these are just a handshake/”nice to meet you” so I’ll just list the name unless there was anything of note. These are in no particular order:
Bobby Heenan (This was sad as he’s in horrible health and can’t close his mouth. It was actually hard to shake his hand.)
Stan Hansen (Talked to him a bit about growing to appreciate his work a bit more. He seemed pleased that someone younger was taking the time to do so.)
Drew Galloway (As lame as it might sound, I talked to him about Mustang Sally for a bit. I know this place isn’t the most close knit group in the world, but whenever I see Drew, she comes to my mind. We also talked about his match the previous night (recap coming) and apparently a lot of people loved it, myself included. He seemed really happy to have entertained that many people. How this guy isn’t WWE Champion I have no idea. He’s WAY taller than I am (about 5’11) too as I was looking up at him.)
Tully Blanchard (One of the first guys I talked to. Blanchard: “Well you start with the best.”)
D’Lo Brown (He was all over the place today, saying hi to almost anyone he could.)
Lashley (VERY nice guy and I talked to him for a few minutes. I even got to pick up the TNA World Title and it actually took two hands. That thing is WAY heavier than it looks.)
Scott Hall (Long line so just a quick handshake and Too Sweet.)
Ken Shamrock (Nicer than you would expect.)
Rob Van Dam (Very nice, talked to him about seeing him win the Intercontinental Title, which I said was one of the best matches of the night. That seemed to really make him smile so it seems that he’s glad he gets to entertain people.)
Abyss (Nice guy again. Told him that he and AJ had my favorite TNA match ever, which he said was his favorite too (Lockdown 2005).)
Kevin Nash (Again, just a quick Too Sweet as the line was long.)
Billy Gunn (Found out I wasn’t buying and barely acknowledged me.)
Honky Tonk Man (Found out I wasn’t buying and sneered at me while shaking my hand. Probably the biggest jerk there.)
Luke Williams (Bushwhackers) (I said he had licked my face as a kid and he seemed to act like that was the weirdest comment ever.)
Laurel Van Ness
Ivelisse (Those eyes man. Just…..dang.)
Thea Trinidad (Barely staying in her top.)
Karlee Perez (Catrina/Maxine) (Gorgeous, built, knew how to dress. That’s as nicely as I can put it.)
Melissa Santos (Funny, looks much better in person and you can hear the announcer in her.)
Taeler Hendrix (That is some pale skin and again, barely staying in her top. I know it might not sound great but I’ve seen swimsuits that showed less.)
Fred Ottman (Tugboat) (Nice guy.)
Christy Hemme (Same as Lita/Kelly: You can feel the energy coming off of her.)
Wade Barrett (Tall, very polite, seemed to be having a great time.)
Steve Lombardi (I said I had watched him lose for years and he said “You mean watching me make money all those years?” Very positive guy and seemed to know what he was in wrestling, which is rare.)
Velvet Sky (Again, camera doesn’t do her justice.)
Raquel (BroMans manager for a few weeks) (Looked outstanding.)
Lillian Garcia (There is no way she’s 50. Like, I don’t believe it’s possible. She seemed touched when I praised her National Anthem performances.)
Torrie Wilson (Got to give her a quick hug. Still looks great.)
Raven (A lot calmer than you would expect. We talked about his podcast for a bit and I asked about the golf cart story at Wrestlemania XVII, which he says is true.)
Ethan Carter III (Funny guy.)
Steiner Brothers (Scott is WAY smaller than he used to be. He’s probably lost 50-60lbs and is downright slim.)
Eugene (Trying to sell a lot until I mentioned I was from Lexington and then had a nice chat about his family being from there.)
One Man Gang (Nicer than you would expect.)
Lisa Marie Varon (Victoria/Tara)
Gary Michael Cappeta (Ring announcers fascinate me for some reason and he was another nice guy.)
Noelle Foley (I know some people say she looks a bit odd at times but she can fill the heck out of a tight black dress. I mentioned that her dad was my all time favorite and she gave me this somewhat surprised look and said he was her favorite too. So she’s got a sense of humor.)
Teddy Long (Very polite and seemed to be having a blast.)
Jack Swagger (Incredibly nice, had a quick chat with him about his ECW run. WAY taller in person, which he says he gets a lot.)
Rock N Roll Express (Their line was almost empty for some reason. You would think they would be a hot ticket right now.)
Bill Apter (Asked my name and thanked me for coming out after a chat about his book, which is worth reading.)
Abdullah the Butcher
Aron Rex (Nice guy.)
Brian Knobbs (Says he’s lost 50lbs and looks like he has.)
Bully Ray (KB: “I met you before at a TNA show.” Bully: “I’m sorry that it sucked.” KB: “You were World Champion at the time.” Bully: “That’s the only part that didn’t suck.”.)
Chavo Guerrero Jr. (Talked with him about his team with Eddie, which he seemed very proud of. Nice guy and much more fun to talk to than I was expecting.)
Cisco (Lucha Underground)
Dan Severn (Not really a fan but came off as one of the most well spoken there.)
Duane Gill (Gillberg)
Gail Kim (I know she gets on my nerves but DANG she is a beautiful woman in person.)
Harry Smith (The hardest handshake I’ve ever felt by a mile.)
Jake Roberts (Much friendlier than last year at Axxess)
Jeff Jarrett (Told him I was from Lexington, which was an old USWA town. He smiled quite a bit.)
John Hennigan (Very cool. He said he and Miz were talking the other day about Miz’s promos about Cena, which were basically the old Dirt Sheet bits. Had a good time talking to him.)
Kevin Thorn (Talked to him about his OVW days, which seemed to be a good topic for him.)
Mascarita Dorada (El Torito)
Virgil (Actually really nice.)
Rockstar Spud (Talked to him about his match with Bully Ray vs. Austin Aries/Bobby Roode, which is the funniest match I’ve ever seen. He seemed very pleased and was another very nice, humble guy, which I’ve often heard about him.)
Shelley Martinez (Not exactly able to rock the sexy outfits anymore.)
Stevie Ray (With Booker. Has some massive arms.)
Stevie Richards (For you Lee.)
Taya Valkerie (Talked about her stuff from the WrestleCon Supershow. Very nice.)
Tony Atlas (Thought he was being rude but it turned out he didn’t see me. We talked about the Wrestlemania II battle royal, which he seemed to have very fond memories of.)
That’s 120 wrestlers in four hours. By comparison, I’ve been to 4 Axxess sessions and might have met 20 people. The names might not be as huge (Ric Flair, Sting, Edge and Christian were at this show too) and the memorabilia might not be there but there are major, major names to meet at a reasonable price. Check this out if you go to Wrestlemania in the future. I’ll be going every single time as it’s a total blast.