Looking back on the European Wrestling Scene in 2001
■投稿日時:2002年1月28日
■書き手:Robert Edlhauser

The TV - Situation:

Litherally all European TV - stations, with the exception of a few are contractually bound to the Turner imperium. After Vince McMahon bought WCW, the last actual wrestling show, that was seen on an european TV screen was the last episode of NITRO. Then - wrestling was gone…

TM3 - the channel, that aired WWF in 2000, didn’t commence so in 2001, had a change of owner, therefore a change of policy and name. “9 Live” is now an interactive game show channel.

The only paradise here is the UK, where Rupert Murdoch’s SKY channels carry all WWF products. Nobody else does…yes - it’s a sad year for TV Wrestling.

Jannuary:

16: The British Ultimate Championship Wrestling Promotion (UPW) folded. Among others, Shinjiro Otani, Tiger Mask IV, Great Saske and El grand Naniva appeared for that promotion.

19: FWA: Johnny Storm took a power bomb wrong, is hospitalized & out for several weeks

On the same night, the NAWA held a card at a local discotheque in Essen, called “Roxy”, where Long & Thick tangled Crazy Johnny Tiger & Martin Nolte to a double countout.

February:

Bryan Dixon tours the UK with Marty Janetty, Konga the Barbarian & Cuban Assasin

3: The Dutch FCW hat a card in Voorburg, The Netherlands called “Foreign Assault”. After winning a Royal Rumble at the beginning of the show, Jodie Fleisch lost to Mot van Kunder later on the card. Also working the card were German Kid, Sonja Schmockl, Mallorca Sun and Ulf Hermann.

17: German Wrestling Association’s (GWA) “Revolution” in Steinbach, Germany saw Crazy Sexy Mike defeating his brother Achmed Chaer and Swiss wrestler Siggi Master Rapper submitting to Eric “Bountyhunter” Schwarz.

24: European Wrestling Fighters (EWF) had a card in Klausen, Italy for the 1st time, featureing a title defence by Gary Mountain vs. Leon Martinez, that ended in a draw.

25: World Xtreme Wrestling at Essen’s “Roxy” is featureing hardcore wrestling to an european audience with guys, that can’t work that style. The league is sponsored by Power Wrestling magazine, the only official mag in german language.

28: WWF Tribute Show in Cardiff with Justin Hansford as Kane, Russ Mathews as Steve Austin, Andy Chambers as Crash Holly, Adam Clark as Buh Buh Ray Dudley, Martin Ubana as D von Dudley, Neil Evans as X - Pac and John Read as Chris Jericho. The WWF sued their ass later that year.

March:

Former ECW wrestler Mustafa Saed wrestles in the UK

Athletic Club Weinheim (ACW) starts with monthly B - shows called “Saturday Night” at a school gym in Weinheim, that will feature their local guys plus fresh pupils from Eric Schwarz.

3: At the GWA - Show “Running Wild” in Steinbach, Germany, Mot van Kunder lost his European title to Mad Cow. Chris the Bambikiller vs. Bountyhunter ended in a no contest.

17: UWF’s “Daydream” in Helmstedt, Germany saw the Southside Rockers of VWC debuting here losing to the Euro Threat as well as an European title defence by Mad Cow defeating Mot van Kunde. Also working that show was Karsten Kretschmer.

24: ACW’s “Back Splash” in Weinheim saw Low Down defeating Leon Martinez, Chris Goliath getting DQ’d against Eric Schwarz in a
German Championship match, the International title changing hands between Jose Lopez and Ahmed Chaer and a strap match between Karsten Kretschmer and Ulf Hermann, where that damn strap broke within the first few minutes into the match.

31: At EWF’s “Spring Revolution” Pete Johnson emerged victorious in an 8 men elimination match to become the new champion. Also on the card, ring announcer Robert Edlhauser quit his job to return beeing the devious manager Robb the Steamhammer, telling EWF’s boss Sepp Kreitmeier to shove it !!

April:

7: The German Wrestling Federation (GWF) helds 2 shows in one day, the matinee show a more childre oriented one, and a pure hardcore show in the evening with a 1st blood match as well as a no ropes barbed wire match.

On the same night, ACW’s next Saturday Night show saw Eric Schwarz defend his German Championship against Low Down.

15: CZW champ John Zandig defeats local wrestler Poison in England, but later that night lost to Wife Beater (Chis Heroe) and lost his belt.

21:

FWA in Bolton, England saw Nova of former ECW infront of 608 fans defeat Doug Williams

WWA starts its season with a 2 days “Weinland Wrestling Cup” show in Wilfersdorf, Austria. On the 1st night, only 60 people show up. WWA is never returning here again.

Jim Neidhard & Sinn (formerly known as Chris Champion/Yoshi Kwan) work for Andrew Baker’s Hammerlock Promotion, who is the UK - member of the NWA.

28: Power Wrestling Magazine held it’s annual fan meeting at a NAWA show in Visselhoevede, Germany, that saw, among other bouts, a cruiserweight - titlechange between German Kid and Mot van Kunder as well as a heavyweight title change between Thomas Blade and Martin Nolte, a protege of Tony St. Clair.

May:

5: WWF “Insurrextion” in London Earl’s Court (attn.: 15.794/sold - out)
Chris Jericho def Steve Regal for the Queens Cup

13: The hughe money input by Power Wrestling magazine is clearly visible at this WXW show at the Roxy. Wrestlers from ACW, GWF and FCW were brought in as well as Big Tiger Steele, Eric Schwarz, Michael Kovac and Chris the Bambikiller. The later two fought for the # 1 contender spot for this league’s heavyweight crown in the main event.

18: European Wrestling Promotion (EWP) in Hannover infront of 600 people:

Dan Collins returns to the european wrestling ring after a long absence to persue a carreer in the computer business, losing to
youngster James Mason. Bruiser Mastino, formerly known as Mantaur was there, after unsucsessfully trying to get work in the
MidAmerican area. Co - Promoter Christian Eckstein def Drew McDonald, Chris Canyon def Robbie Brookside (COR), Terry Funk won
triangle over Dave Finlay & Tiger Steele (Giant Butch Masters)

19: European Wrestling Promotion (EWP) in Hannover infront of 800 people:

Bruiser Mastino def Tiger Steele, Robbie Brookside def Dave Finlay (COR), Christian Eckstein won the new IC - title of this promotion pinning Terry Funk.

19: FWA in Portchester: Jodie Fleisch (Michinoku Pro’s Doc Chan) dislocated his right elbow in a match vs. James Tighe and is out until autum.

18: The Vienna Wrestling Club is holding a pressconference in WWA’s owner Freddie Barne’s restaurant inducting Dr. Wilfried Ctyroky, the last president of the now defunct CWA as their honory president. They announce the main event for their re - launch show to be a title defense between Maverik and Leon Martinez. Maverik refuses to sign the contract, because he won’t be at the show. Instead, he is going to Dory Funk’s wrestling school. Therefore, the new president declares the title vacant and there will be a match between Leon Martinez and # 2 contender Gary Mountain. Maverik after hearing the decision starts a brawl thru the restaurant earning him a suspension.

23: VWC’s relaunch show “Die Auferstehung” saw Ulf Hermann with a band member of Rammstein in his corner (Ulf is the security chief of that band) defeating Chris Goliath. After the match, Ulf took the torch he uses for his flame throwing gimmick before his matches and re-lit it. He then pours petrolium all over his opponent, obviously trying to set him on fire. Now - there had been a long feude between Ulf and heel manager Robb the Steamhammer, who returned at this show as a ring announcer. As Robb saw, what Ulf wants to do with his former protege, he took a broomstick from under the timekeeper’s table, entered the ring and broke it over Ulf’s back, just as Hermann took a mouth - full of liquor. Ulf swallowed the substance and was almost choked to death in the ring !!!

21.5 - 3.6.
Scott Conway’s Wrestling Alliance tour thru the UK with Horrace Hogan & Dave Finlay. Bushwhackers & Honky Tonk Man pulled out of it, calling the promoter the most dishonest guy they ever worked with.

June:

16: ACW’s “Doomsday II” saw a 4 corners match as the main event featureing Chris Goliath, Ulf Hermann, Eric Schwarz and Michael Kovac. Also on this show, Low Down lost a loser leaves town match to Mr. Nobody (formerly known as Headhunter).

On the same day, WWA had it’s annual show at the Gainfarn firebreakers fest in lower austria. After “The Lion of Liechtenstein” Freddie Barne drew with longtime enemy Mr. Tatoo and won the main event with Leon Martinez over Dirty Harry & Alex the Iceman, he announced his retirement. Plans are, that after this season, he will concentrate on promoting his WWA shows, which are almost all sold ones.

23: EWF’s “Summer Night Fight” in Nurnberg, Germany saw Pete Johnson giving his belt to Eddie Steinblock by laying down for him. In the main event, Eric Schwarz won the belt from Eddie via DQ.

July:

1: WXW’s “Dead End” saw Karsten Kretschmer going over Eric Schwarz and Chris the Bambikiller losing the title to Mad Cow. In the main event, Robbie Brookside defeated Michael Kovac.

August:

1: FWA “No Surprises 3” at the Portsmouth Pyramid infront of 600 people saw “The Showstealer” Alex Shane defeat FBI’s Little Guido, managed by Jasmine St. Clair, subbing for The Blue Meanie.

4 + 5: NWA Germany has it’s 1st show of this year in Delmenhorst featuring the owner Franz Schuhmann going over his student Igor
(Oskar Schultes). Also on the 2-days-card are Karsten Kretschmer and wrestlers from the GWF.

11: It’s NWA Germany again, this time in Brinkum, featureing Eric Schwarz vs. Karsten Kretschmer in the main event.

25: …aaaand it’s NWA Germany again, with 2 shows in one day, this time in Hemelingen, with Iceman, Maverik, Leon Martinez and former female bodybuilding champion of England, “The Scorpion” of WWA.

On the same night the concept of various european promotions working together became a short reality with NAWA, FWA and FCW presenting EWU (European Wrestling Union) “European Invasion” in Bochum infront of ca. 400 fans. FWA promoter Elisar Cabrera brought Alex Shane for a real Showstealer vs. Eric Schwarz, Karsten Kretschmer, managed by Robb the Steamhammer lost to Ulf Hermann and a young unknown student of Afa Anoia named “5*” Cory K lost to Robbie Brookside.

September:

Because of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Gary Mountain and his girl friend Sonja Schmockel could’nt fly out of NY to make it to the scheduled VWC show the following weekend. VWC officals moved the show to october. The VWC board decided to have an 8 men tornament to determine it’s new champion with qualification matches beeing held all over europe.

EWP (promoters: Christian Eckstein & Tony St. Clair) held a 10 days tornament in Hannover with Big Vito Lograsso & Scotty Riggs as well as Joe E. Legend. On the 2nd night, they featured what was billed as the “Manfred Koch Memorial Night” to honour the long time CWA ring announcer, that passed away last year. His brother Peter William, who is still envolved in the business as a commentator for DSF TV as well as a hotline host was used as the ring announcer. Cannonball Grizzley (Angle in ECW), who visible must have lost a ton of weight won the torny in the final over Big Vito.

22: German Stampede Wrestling (GWS) featured “Night in Motion” in Schmallenberg with Michael Kovac vs. Crazy Sexy Mike in a no DQ match as the main event.

29: Iceman becomes the 1st qualificant in the upcomming VWC tornament with a clean win over Chris Goliath at a FWC Show titled “Wrestle Blast II” in Geleen, Holland. Main Event saw a tag-team/cage match between Long & Thick and Jodie Fleisch & Bernhard van Damme. Scheduled was Ulf Hermann who embarked on a world tour with Rammstein, therefore cancelling all his wrestling comitments.

Brian Dixon’s “All Star Wrestling” has Davey Boy Smith on his UK - tour thru September & October.

October:

5. - 7.: ACW has a “Man of Steel” Tornament during it’s annual “Universe Brawl” card, but drew bad crowds. It’s the card, where Low Down changes his name to Patrick “Geil” Schulz - his real one. Eric Schwarz broke his hand in 2 places legit in the ring. Big Tiger Steel won in the final over Iceman. On the same card, Heavyweight champion Karsten Kretschmer pinned Joe X Legend (Just Joe)

16: All Star Wrestling in Croydon had Jake Roberts, also on tour with this group is Joe Gomez (as Bobby Bold Eagle) Chris Chavis (as Tatanka) John Tenta (as Earthquake) and Joe E. Legend (as Just Joe) as well as Shinja Makabe (NJPW)

20:

There was a lot of talk and a lot in the press before FWA’s ?WrestleXpress“ in Dagenham, Essex, UK. They had even their own website for that show. It came down to an english TV station who was about to back the event financially going bankcrupt before the show could have taken place and almost all announced talent, like RVD, Juventud Guerrera, Psicosis and so on NOT appearing. In the end - the promoter that started the undertakeing was not the one who actually put the show into place and - oh yes - even the town and hall was different, because of low pre-sales, they couldn’t efford the building. This was the end result:

Drew McDonald def Horace Hogan
Big Tiger Steel (Giant Butch Masters) def Skull Murphy via DQ
NWA - title: Steve Corino def Sandman
Tables/latter/chair: Jodie Fleisch def Johnny Storm
British heavyweight - title torny:
Doug Williams def Kerry Cabrero
Robbie Brookside def Guy Thunder
Doug Williams def Robbie Brookside for championship

On the same day, VWC scores it’s attendance record with 209 paid watching Chris Goliath turn back face after getting whipped by Martin Nolte, who subbed for the still touring Ulf Hermann. During the match, manager Robb the Steamhammer was handcuffed to Leon Martinez, who got attacked by a misterious masked wrestlers with a led pipe, who everybody believes to be the suspended Maverik. Iceman & Soldner over Riot Gas is the best match of the show. Gary Mountain qualified himself for the tornament by beating Chief Hardcore.

26: FWA “Trick or Treat” at Broxhourne Civic Hall in Hoddesdon, Herts, England
Scott Parker pinned Steve Corina (accompanied by his wife) and was attacked by Drew McDonald & Dino Scarlo after the match and was safed by all faces led by Alex Shane.

27:

NWA UK in Andover, Hampshire, England:
Steve Corino loses his NWA - title in a TLC - match to Gary Steele.

EWF’s “Battle without friends” in Nurnberg saw Michael Kovac over Martin Nolte in the main event as well as Karsten Kretschmer qualifying for the VWC - tornament with a win over Patrick Schulz.

November:

3: WWF PPV “Rebellion” in Manchester Evening News Arena (attn.: 15.612/sold - out)

Chuck Palumbo & Billy Gunn def Lance Storm & Justin Credible
IC - title: Edge def Christian
Big Show def DDP
World tag - titles/triangle: Dudleys def Hardies and Acolytes
William Regal def Tajiri
World - title: Chris Jericho def Kurt Angle
Lita & Torrie Wilson def Stacey Keibler & Molly Holly
WWF - title: Steve Austin def Rocky Maivia

9: VWC has it’s last card of the year called “Extreme in Wien” featureing Public Enemy (Flyboy Rocco Rock & Johnny Grunge) teaming with the Southside Rockers winning over Iceman & Patrick Schulz & Hustler & Skullcrusher, the last 2 from MidAmerican Wrestling.

10:

FWA’s “Highschool Hell” at Harrow High School in England
Doug Williams def Ulf Hermann via DDT and was attacked by Drew McDonald, Robbie Brookside & Dino Scarlo after the match. Robbie stole Doug’s TWA title belt and declares himself British champion. Drew McDonald vs. Alex Shane ended in a no contest.

On the same day, NAWA’s last show not only this year, but maybe for the future was Rock’n Wrestling Night in Ulzen. The best match of the show was Skullcrusher defeating Chris Goliath. That Puplic Enemy had to lose to the local team of Martin Nolte & Johnny Tiger nobody understood. Heavy tensions backstage led to wrestlers, shooting over the house mic against promoter Jan Daneke,
who didn’t pay the Americans and wasn’t to be seen ever since.

17: ACW held a one night tornament at their last Saturday Night card of this year with former partners Mr. Boombastic beating Fireangle. Main event saw manager Robb the Steamhammer square off in a 4 corners match with Mark the Lumberjack vs. Businessman and promoter Dirk Hadameck. Dirk was winning after a nail in the coffin on Robb.

The NWA Germany held it’s annual 10 days tornament in Bremen with Michael Kovac, Karsten Kretschmer, Iceman, Robbie Brookside, Patrick Schulz and of course Franz Schuhmann. Said not to be as great as the last time.

27: WWAS in Belfast, North Ireland (attn.: 5.000)

Cruiserweight - title: Juventud Guerrera def Psicosis
Gangrel def Luna Vachon
Tables: Norman Smiley def Crowbar
Bryan Christopher def Disco Inferno
Buff Bagwell def Steve Ray
Title: Jeff Jarrett def Road Dog

28: WWAS in Dublin, Ireland (attn.: 6.000/sold - out)

Cruiserweight - title: Juventud Guerrera def Psicosis
Gangrel def Luna Vachon
Hardcore: Norman Smiley def Crowbar
Bryan Christopher def Disco Inferno
Buff Bagwell def Stevie Ray
Title: Jeff Jarrett def Road Dog

December:

1: WWAS in Birmingham, England (attn.: 5.000)

Cruiserweight - title: Juventud Guerrera def Psicosis
Gangrel def Luna Vachon
Buff Bagwell def Stevie Ray
Bryan Christopher def Disco Inferno
Tables: Norman Smiley def Crowbar
Title/triangle: Jeff Jarrett over Road Dog and Scott Steiner

3: WWAS in London (attn.: 6.500)

Cruiserweight - title: Juventud Guerrera def Psicosis
Buff Bagwell def Disco Inferno
James Armstrong won Royal Rumble
Tables: Crowbar def Gangrel
Road Dog & Bryan Christopher def Jeff Jarrett & Scott Steiner

5: WWAS at Wembley Arena

Road Dogg & Bryan Christopher def Jeff Jarrett & Scott Steiner

14: FWA “Lights, Camera, Action” in Acton Assembly Hall saw a TWA - title defence of Doug Williams vs. Robbie Brookside

15: ACW’s annual year-end card “Wild Christmas” saw the retirement of the Businessman winning over Mark the Lumberjack.
International Champion Ahmed Chaer lost the title to Turkish newcomer (and Fenerbace Istanbul soccer club supporter) Aykut. Chris the Bambikiller defeated his former teacher Michael Kovac in a bloody falls count everywhere that ended in the parking lot after a piledriver onto a car. Big Tiger Steel won the heavyweight - title from Karsten Kretschmer with a returning Ulf Herman as special referee.

23: Kendo Nagasaki Fan Appriciation Night at Victoria Hall in Hanley, Stoke on Trent

30: Former PWG (Professional Wrestling from Germany) promoter Gerd Vollink dies of a hart attacke in Germany. He was a big
competition for Otto Wanz’ CWA during the beginning of the 90ies in Germany as well as South Africa with Belgium wrestler Hans Rooks as his business partner. He gave wrestlers like Ulf Hermann, Doc Dean and Robbie Brookside their 1st breaks in Germany as well as Steve Regal, who put him over infront of the other boys while he was working in WCW and Gerd was visiting him. He stopped promoting own shows at the end of the 90ies but I think has on record the very last match ever of the Dynamite Kid, who worked for him in Germany many times. Other wrestlers used by him were The Cheetah Kid (Rocco Rock), Craig the Waverider (Hardcore Graig), The Hustler (Mid American Wrestling owner Carmine DeSpirito), Drew McDonald, Skull Murphy (the european version) and WWF jobber Brian Walsh.

As I said - a sad year for european wrestling: no more wrestling on TV, a dead Gerd Vollink and a dying idea of leagues working together. Oh - I forgot: WXW lost their building in Essen, therefore Power Wrestling magazine pulled the plugg and PWU boss Wilhelm Reichel was sentenced to 1 ? year in prison. The only terethory that’s booming is the UK with tours all over the country. They even started something in Spain which died in it’s infancy.

We all here in Europe do hope, that 2002 will be a better year. With the introduction of the EURO for 9 european countries,
although the writer of these lines doesn’t see it coming.





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