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In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

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Old 06-17-2019, 03:27 AM   #1
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In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

My "Ambition"

After a crazy almost 8-year run, things have finally slowed down and settled in enough for me to reflect on how I even got here. Once just an idea and passion became a small local promotion that has grown into a two “brand” wrestling promotion that’s only just a few months away from my 8-year anniversary show “WaleMania”. That’s how it all started, as a concert the weekend of WrestleMania. If you aren’t sure who I am, I completely understand. I never wanted to be an “on-screen personality” still to this day I haven’t become one and never plan on doing so. I never used what little publicity or reach that I’ve had to help push the company forward, I wanted the wrestling to speak for itself. In fact, I’m willing to bet the most people unfamiliar with my promotion would even know that I founded it. I’m Wale, when all this started, I was a rapper with an entrepreneurial spirit and a passion for pro-wrestling with a limited amount of funds. I never got the Khan’s or McMahon’s financial backing and even if I was offered it, I’m not sure I would have taken it. I wanted to owe no one any thing and I was determined to prove that authentic, high paced, world class in ring action could draw money. Maybe it would end up being just a niche thing that would eventually fold but due to a cult like following chants would still be heard around other wrestling arenas like E-C-Dub; but maybe this would be something that wrestling fans truly desired and non-sports entertainment fans would accept and become a part of something that is such a strange phenomenon when you break it all down.

I knew my career wouldn’t last forever, the rap game had turned into something I barely even recognized anymore. The young kids had changed the entire landscape and I have no hard feelings towards that, or them. I just knew it was a young man’s game and it was my time to step aside and give them what little spotlight I had. I had made enough money that I could have retired, but that’s just not me. I always had an itch that I couldn’t quite stretch due to my occupation, but as my career dwindled down, I had more time to focus on other aspirations. I’ve always been passionate about pro-wrestling so when the time was right I started working on the blue print for “In The Biz Pro Wrestling” (For someone who made a career of clever use of words it’s not the most captivating name, but it gets the point across. I was actually in the business of professional wrestling.) It all started with a few local talents (some who are still actively wrestling, some who are currently trainers, some who have retired and some who never quite panned out for whatever reason) and one very important FaceTime call to someone who over the years has not only been instrumental in all of this but someone who has become a close friend, Kenny Omega. He was my first “big name” signing and for the first few months it was just me and him talking almost daily planning things out. I knew a little bit about the “behind the scenes” of pro-wrestling but not enough for us to get where we are today.


When I first called Kenny, he wasn't exactly an open book and honestly, I’m not sure he knew who I was despite him saying he was a fan of mine. Before I ever offered him to become the vice-president of In The Biz, I’d call and pick his brain for hours at a time about the business. At first I’m sure he thought it would never amount to much but the weekly calls became daily, the bouncing of my ideas off of him slowly became us bouncing ideas off of each other, eventually I believe it got to the point where he would look forward to our phone calls as much as I did. Once he became mentally invested in the promotion it wasn’t a hard sell to get him to join forces once his contract at NJPW ran up. I don’t think NJPW ever thought we would make it to where we are today, but in the months of our phone calls back and worth I also built a relationship with a main-stay in NJPW Zazuchika Okada. He took a little longer to warm up to me and the whole idea of a company built of the in-ring action being the draw not the over the top characters but a few months after Omega made the jump so did Okada…


This is going to be a story of my Fire Pro Wrestling World promoter mode. I'm currently almost in the 8th year so the first few posts will be catching everyone up on everything. The first few years I didn't really keep track of anything, but as time went on and I began keeping notes that got more detailed over time. For those unfamiliar with this game mode, it doesn't really focus on story lines which is fine because I've never been a fan of over the top scripted story lines. There's a few that have developed through this naturally and I'm sure now that I'm sharing this there will be even more. The company's focus always has been and will be on great in-ring action. Feel free to leave suggestions, or ask questions. It's been a while since I've done this so I'm sure I'm a little rusty. I'm thinking about streaming this on twitch in a few weeks once I get the story caught up if there's any interest. I can't say enough about how much I enjoy this game and this particular game mode. I was addicted from the moment I started it, I'm 8 years in after only having the game maybe two weeks. Once I get to where I'll be posting updates on shows, the matches won't have a whole lot of detail 1) because I didn't write much down other then who won and loss and the rating of the match 2) I'm honestly not too familiar with a lot of the names of moves. But if more detail is something that people want then I'll do my best to come up with what happened in shows past and provide detail of what happens in the matches as they go along. I've also never been the type to post a lot of pictures or videos in my stories so hopefully that won't be too much of an issues, if there's a huge demand for it, then I will of course do my best to incorporate it. With all that being said, I hope everyone enjoys this half as much as I'm enjoying watching it all take place and sharing it.
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Old 06-17-2019, 08:11 AM   #2
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Re: In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

Year 1

What good would it be to have the world’s tallest sky scraper on a weak foundation? I planned to build In The Biz from the ground up. There were no immediate television deals, sponsorships, or financial backing from a bored billionaire. The first year was rough, some months we lost money but every following month we came back. We never lost faith or questioned the process. I don’t believe in hot-shotting wrestlers, and the same applies for our company.

Our first show was a sold out crowd of 5,100 people, it was an intimate setting compared to the 65,000 seat arenas we are regularly selling out these days. The first ITB Heavyweight Champion was a local guy, Matt Robinson. He’s still around now, he rarely wrestles anymore. He’s one of the lead trainers down at the academy these days. Kenny and I agreed we wouldn’t just strap the title on him, instead he had a four-month title chase until he finally got the title (not that he needed it anyways). He held onto the title for the next 13 months defeating many challengers and putting on just as many amazing matches in one of our most memorable and longest title reigns.

As I mentioned before, it took a lot more convincing to get Okada to join forces with us. It was a risky enough move for Omega to take the chance with In The Biz, but it was even more risky for Okada. English wasn’t his first language; he had never lived in America or even anywhere in the Western hemisphere for any significant period of time. He was a Japense wrestler in the biggest Japenese wrestling promotion at it’s peak. I couldn’t exactly tell you why, but eventually he did decide to take that risk and would become not only the other vice-president for In The Biz Pro Wrestling, but also a very good friend. Okada has been just as important in the building of this foundation as Kenny. The three of us all agreed it would be easy to just go ahead and book Omega and Okada on their first show together, but we also agreed that just because it would have been easy and would have drawn a big crowd that keeping them apart for a while would ultimately lead up to so much more.

The three of us don’t agree on everything, we probably disagree on more than we actually agree on. One thing we all strongly agreed on was this promotion was for the wrestlers. I was once an artist, so I completely understood how it felt and how damaging to my craft it was for label heads to tell me what they wanted from me. The label would try to tell me “oh you need a single to play in the clubs”, but that wasn’t exactly my strong point and if I wasn’t in the mood to write and then record that hit club single, then it would sound forced and would more than likely flop. The same principle has always and will always apply here. As the founder and president of In The Biz, it’s never been my job to script a promo or to design a match. My job is to provide the platform for the artist to do their art. If a worker wanted to go out there and hop like a frog to the ring, who am I to say whether that will ever get over or not? Of course, if it doesn’t get over or seem promising, I wouldn’t offer them a contract after their trial but still it’s their craft and they should do what they feel is right.

Somewhere towards the end of year one we had begun to really build a buzz. It was around that time that we signed Chris Jericho to a part time contract. Even though Jericho was a little bit past his prime in the ring, he was invaluable behind the scenes, and could still put on stellar matches. Jericho worked with us for about two years until his retirement. His final match in professional wrestling was with us, and what a match that was. Still to this day, I talk to Chris pretty regularly even though he’s not officially working with us anymore. We wouldn’t be where we are today without his help, and I can’t thank him enough for that and his willingness to put the younger guys over and make them look like a million bucks. Around the time of Jericho signing and debuting with us, Kenny Omega did yet another monumental thing for In The Biz he helped us sign Kota Ibushi to a full time exclusive contract. By the end of year one we were selling out 10,000 to 15,000 seat venues. We had also built quite the roster. We had also signed Jay White, Chris Sabin, Walter, Christian (mainly for backstage but he did work a few shows for us) and a few more names. We had attracted the eyes of the wrestling community, as well as the eyes of future sponsorships. We now had to continue our momentum into year two and continue to grow. The regional television deal we were offered in January of year 2 was going to be very helpful with that.
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Old 06-17-2019, 04:20 PM   #3
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Re: In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

LOVING the dialogue with this backstory. The build up us super fun to read so far.

Loving that Omega is a big name in this promotion. Also, Chris Jericho coming over for two years before retiring is a fun one to read about.

Then basically landing all the NJPW names with Christian is interesting!

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Old 06-20-2019, 08:01 AM   #4
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Re: In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

Year 2

Year 2 brought along quite a bit of first. Our first sponsors, our first tv deal, and our first retirement. Our first sponsors weren’t worth much, but it made the aesthetics much nicer with the sponsors on the mat and the ring post. Our first television deal was just a regional deal, but it was a start and added a few extra dollars. Chris Jericho also had his retirement match against Jay White in which he did “the deed” and put him over on his way out. Year 2 also provided the company with one of our hottest storylines and matches, we finally had Okada and Omega face off for the ITB heavyweight Championship.

Omega and Okada were also instrumental in another big name signing, Hiroshi Tanahashi. Once he was signed we already started to plant the seeds for Hiroshi vs Tanahashi which would end up taking place at our end of the year super show WaleMania. We added quite a few more signings this year including WALTER, Andrade “Cien” Almas, Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks, and Sami Zayn just to mention a few. With all the talent on our hands, the creative team of Omega, Okada, and I came up with and started to plan a “brand split” which would take place January of year 3. We decided Omega would be the face of one brand, and Okada the ace of the other. Kota Ibushi would go with Omega and Tanahashi with Okada. Each “brand” would run one show then on the third month there would be a cross brand show, then the cycle would repeat.

Year 2 brought us another first, a cross promotion event with another promotion that we ran with Ring Of Honor. Both promotions put their heavyweight titles on the line. Omega successfully defended ours against Jay Lethal. Okada took their title from Mark Briscoe. We couldn’t have scripted it any better, we now had two heavyweight titles which meant each brand would have their own heavyweight champion. This lead us to lose wrestlers to other promotions in hopes of gaining more belts to split between the brands. Kota Ibushi was instrumental in getting more belts. By the end of the year each brand has a heavyweight, junior heavyweight, and junior heavyweight tag team championship. We still had to find a way to get another heavyweight tag team belt, but for the mean time the tag team title would be on the line every cross brand show to determine which brand would belong to.

We also missed out on two big free agents this year. AJ Styles became a free agent and he ended up signing with New Japan. Naito’s contract at NJPW ran up and he then signed with WWE. I was and still am a little suspicious of this, it seemed more like a bit of a talent exchange to me. We were beyond just making a little noise at this point and WWE and NJPW weren’t exactly thrilled about this and became reluctant to do any type of business with us. They drew the lines in the sand, which meant the unspoken rule of us poaching talent went out of the window and we began tampering to try to steal talent from these companies while they were still under contract. There’s an old saying, by any means necessary which applies. We’d have some of our talent send feelers to wrestlers in those two promotions that we were interested in just to see if maybe they’d come work with us once their contract ran out. Some of them were interested, and others weren’t. We ended up signing Buddy Murphy and Pentagon Jr by doing this. Pentagon who had signed with NJPW and Buddy who was still being wasted on Superstars for WWE. Year 3 was shaping up to be a monumental year for us. We were about to begin a risky brand split which could end up being the smartest or dumbest decision the three of us had made, either way we were sticking with it. We all three believed that every worker deserved a spot on the card, and this would be a way to make sure we could always offer that.
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Old 06-20-2019, 08:02 AM   #5
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Re: In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

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Originally Posted by Bard
LOVING the dialogue with this backstory. The build up us super fun to read so far.

Loving that Omega is a big name in this promotion. Also, Chris Jericho coming over for two years before retiring is a fun one to read about.

Then basically landing all the NJPW names with Christian is interesting!

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Thanks I appreciate the feedback and I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying it! Let me know any suggestions you may have! Glad to see you’re still around man.
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Old 06-20-2019, 11:40 PM   #6
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Re: In The Business - A Fire Pro Wrestling World Story

I am definitely following. This is interesting and different from most of the other stories on here.
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