Monday, January 19, 2015

#RAWlternative - Offering Fans An Alternative to Mainstream Wrestling

When most wrestling fans think of Monday nights, they think of WWE's Raw program. I'm one of those people. Realizing that three hours of wrestling will be on is what helps me get through most Monday's because I have something to look forward to. There's something different about this Monday however. While I am pumped for Monday night to get here because of wrestling, it's not solely because of Raw. It's because of a movement that YOU can be a part of. A movement that is setting out to give fans who are longing for something different in professional wrestling, an alternative to what they see on Monday night's. Its a movement that will help bring new eyes to hard working independent wrestling companies and help raise awareness as to what else there is out there. It's a movement aptly titled - Rawlternative (Raw Alternative).

On the evening of January 19th, 2015, over a dozen of the best matches that took place on the Independent scene in 2014 will be streamed for FREE on YouTube at the following link:

Many people have never checked out Independent Wrestling because it's not as easily available as WWE and because they don't want to spend money on a product that they've never seen before. For fans who have been eager to see what the indie scene is all about, this is the PERFECT chance to see what else the world of professional wrestling has to offer.

Some of the matches featured include a bout between the hottest tag team in the world today, The Young Bucks and one of the most underrated teams from the past few years, the Super Smash Bros. If you've never seen these two teams compete, you're certainly in for a treat if you choose to tune in tonight. They've wrestled each across the scene, most notably in PWG, where they had several classic encounters.

The match that will air tomorrow night between The Bucks and the Smash Bros comes from Canada's Smash Wrestling. Smash is one of the lesser known Independent companies however they are certainly making waves across the scene as of late. I've yet to see the match that is being streamed tomorrow night so I personally can't wait to see The Bucks & SSB collide for the first time in nearly two years. If you're a fan of tag team wrestling, this is a bout you don't want to miss!

Another match that is airing that I'd like to discuss features current WWE NXT star, Kevin Owens, formerly known as Kevin Steen. If you were impressed by Owens impactful debut at NXT's "rEvolution" event late last year, now is your chance to see one of his best matches that took place on his road to the WWE. The bout that will be streamed is from a company that Steen himself has referred to as "the PWG of Canada", C4 Wrestling. His opponent is one of the most unique & fastest rising stars on the scene today, "Speedball" Mike Bailey. The two are polar opposites as Steen is the brute yet agile powerhouse while Bailey is known for his speed & tae kwon do skills. What happened when these two met inside the squared circle? Find out at 7:30pm tonight as this match will kick off the #Rawlternative broadcast!

I'm not going to overload you with information on every single match that will air, I'll just simply say that if you're a fan of wrestling, I don't think this is an event you want to miss. WWE is a universal company that is on TV every week and while they do what they do (sports entertainment) better than anyone else, if pure professional wrestling action is what you're looking for - Rawlternative is your opportunity to get what I would consider a showcase of the Independent scene. You will see matches from a wide variety of promotions from across & outside of the country including Ohio's Absolute Intense Wrestling, Missouri's St Louis Anarchy, Canada's Alpha-1 and many others. There will be a vast number of styles put on display as well. From tag team wrestling from The Young Bucks & Super Smash Bros to highflying from competitors such as Ricochet, Rich Swann & AR Fox to hard hitters like Chris Hero & Josh Alexander to technicians like Kyle O'Reilly & Johnny Gargano to women's wrestling - there's a little bit of everything here. You will also see some names who have made it to WWE that you might recognize such as Brian Kendrick & Kevin Owens. And you may even see some talent that could very well end up in WWE in the near future. Many of WWE's current stars such as Seth Rollins & Daniel Bryan came from the Indies so this could be your chance to possibly discover an athlete that may end up being the next big thing!

Beyond that, the companies that are contributing matches to be streamed during this event are all growing promotions that can only survive with the help and support of fans. By tuning in and watching this event, you show your support not only for Independent Wrestling, but for the professional wrestling business as a whole. The reason the late 90's were such an exciting time was because every company involved HAD to put forth their best effort in order to outdo the competition. With that being said, I think anyone who's been involved heavily in pro wrestling will tell you that competition is better for the business as a whole. And while the independents may not be viewed as competition, they certainly offer fans something different and an event like this widens the amount of wrestling available to fans which is what makes it so great.

Don't get me wrong though, this isn't about being anti-WWE. This isn't about getting people to stop watching Raw. In fact, the original name of this event was #BoycottRaw, but it was changed because many people were getting the wrong vibe. I won't try to explain what the organizers of this event are setting out to do though, I'll let them speak for themselves. The statement on the event page on Facebook for #Rawlternative reads this:

"The purpose of #RAWlternative isn't to get fans to stop watching WWE. The purpose of #RAWlternative is to get the internet wrestling community to band together for one night to raise awareness for the mainstream alternatives. If you are unhappy with what you see on your TV every Monday night, please don't stop supporting professional wrestling. Tune in to #RAWlternative on 1/19/15 and thrust yourself head first into the indie scene. We are teaming with a dozen of the most prominent independent wrestling promotions in North America to broadcast some of the best matches of 2014 to a worldwide audience." -courtesy of

As you can see, the purpose of this event reads clear. It's for any and every wrestling fan that's looking for something different than what's on TV every week. Whether it's out of dissatisfaction with the current WWE product or just out of curiosity, this event will give fans a chance to see a whole nother side of the world of pro wrestling. If that sounds like something you'd be interested in, then #Rawlternative is for you!

The folks at Beyond Wrestling, a promotion out of Rhode Island, have done an awesome job of getting this event together. I'm not sure who all exactly helped out in organizing it, but I'd like to take this time to thank them for putting so much effort into putting this together. As someone who's been a fan of WWE all my life and of the Indies for almost two years now, I truly can't wait to see what impact this event will/could have on the wrestling scene.

If you want more information on this event, I've compiled some links and lists below including the list of matches that will be streamed as well as the Twitter accounts of all the companies involved.

Matches announced:

-Young Bucks vs. Super Smash Bros courtesy of Smash Wrestling (Twitter: @smashwrestling)
-Ricochet vs. Josh Alexander courtesy of Alpha-1 Wrestling (Twitter: @A1Wrestling)
-Chris Hero vs. Colin Delaney courtesy of 2CW: Squared Circle Wrestling (Twitter: @2CW)
-Johnny Gargano vs. Ethan Page courtesy of Absolute Intense Wrestling (Twitter: @aiwrestling)
-Takaaki Watanabe vs. Andy Dalton courtesy of Inspire Pro (Twitter: @InspireProWres)
-Ninjas With Altitude vs. Food Fighters courtesy of Inter Species Wrestling (Twitter: @ISDub)
-Eddie Kingston vs. Keith Walker courtesy of Aaw Pro (Twitter: @AAWPro)
-Kevin Steen vs. Mike Bailey courtesy of C*4 (Twitter: @C4Wrestling)
-Brian Kendrick vs. Dark S...heik courtesy of Hoodslam (Twitter: @HOODSLAM)
-Rich Swann & AR Fox vs. Christian Rose & Matt Cage courtesy of DREAMWAVE Wrestling (Twitter: @DWWrestling)
-Kyle O'Reilly vs. Gary Jay courtesy of Saint Louis Anarchy (Twitter: @stlanarchy)
- Athena vs. Mia Yim courtesy of AIW's Girls Night Out

 Featuring FREE MATCHES from:
- Beyond Wrestling (Twitter: @beyondwrestling)

Don't forget to tune into the following link on tonight at 7:30pm EST:

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