The names John Cena, Randy Orton, The Big Show, and Mark Henry might not be recognized by those that aren’t familiar with professional wrestling, but for the throngs of WWE fans across the country, they mean one thing: “Superstars.” That’s what WWE C.E.O Vince McMahon dubs his professional wrestlers and, by extension, what Ohio Valley Wrestling calls their cast of tough guys and gals. What do all of those stars in particular have in common? they got their “sea legs” from Louisville’s own OVW.
Acting as a college of sorts for professional wrestlers, the OVW kicks off several times a week in the area, particularly in their home base at Davis Arena, every Wednesday and most Saturdays. They also frequently do shows at their old home, the Armory in New Albany, as well as various other local venues.
After stopping by to see my first OVW event, I saw wrestlers flipping and sliding their way through matches while “working the crowd.” There’s a unique skill to getting an audience worked up like that, for the second that somebody comes out they are working their character angle – be it a baby face or heel, the wrestlers knew just which buttons to press.
Now, it’s no opera but it never claims to be. It is, in no uncertain terms, professional wrestling and proud of it. And for me, it was just fun, stepping into a world where scores are settled in the ring and every once in a while somebody gets hit with a chair.
OVW has been broadcasting live on television for some time now, and it airs in Louisville on WKYI on Saturdays at Noon as well as WOBZ on Friday nights at 10 p.m. Many episodes and matches also stream on ovwwrestling.com.
Image: OVW Wrestling/
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