More hard-hitting than a tombstone pile driver delivered by The Undertaker...more entertaining than The Shockmaster's debut at Clash of the Champions XXIV...as undeniably inescapable as the Young Bucks slapping on the Cease and Desist...it's the Red Wings' second annual Salute to Pro Wrestling Night Wednesday, August 7 - presented by Cricket Wireless and H&R Block.
The highlights read like a video game super card of inter-promotional dream matches with:
* a special appearance by WWE Hall of Famer Jerry "The King " Lawler - who will sign autographs and take pictures with fans, and take part in a Post-Game Live interview sure to be more entertaining and emotional than Lawler's Empty Arena Match against Terry Funk. Lawler will sign autographs for fans in the concourse near the Red Wings Hall of Fame from 6 p.m. until 6:40 p.m.. He will throw out the first pitch, then sign for fans again from 7:15 until 8 pm. Fans will need to purchase an autograph/photo ticket once inside the autograph line on August 7. The cost will be $10 for an autograph ticket (comes with official event photo, or your item), $10 for a photo opp ticket, or $15 to get both an autograph and photo opp with Lawler.
*NEW for 2019: post-game fireworks featuring the greatest wrestling ring entrance themes of all time.Post-game fireworks presented by ESL Federal Credit Union (this is the re-scheduled show from the May 25 game suspended by rain)
* visit the Pop Roc table in the main breezeway for your chance to win an awesome prize from Pop Roc - comics, caffeine, culture and pro wrestling, 337 East Ave. downtown
* fans are encouraged to dress as their favorite pro wrestler (PG era, please) for the chance to be part of special wrestling themed on-field promotions including the Finger Poke of Doom, a two out of three falls thumb wrestling match with Lawler, Name That Ring Entrance Tune, Paul Heyman Promo showdown, proof reading old Wrestling Observer newsletters to see who can find the most grammar and syntax errors (magnifying glasses provided), and more.
* wrestling ring entrance themes played for the Wings' walk-up songs
* Tony Schiavone, the voice of WCW Monday Nitro and current Gwinnett Stripers radio voice, will wave to fans from the visiting broadcast booth and present a signed Tony Schiavone and Bug bobble head to one lucky fan
* special shoot appearances by local indy pro wrestlers, and storyline surprises that will rival the time Chris Jericho showed up at New Japan wearing the psycho make-up
* an undefined yet ultra-special role for Andrew "The Authority" Joseph, one of the original hosts of "The Pain Clinic" radio show
* the whole night will be more carefully thought out and crafted than any late 2000-early 2001 Monday Nitro episode you suffered through
It's true, it's true - pro wrestling takes over Frontier Field August 7. Smart marks stay home - the whole night will be kayfabe. Don't be one of those jabronis who waits to read about it later in the dirt sheets; order your tickets today for the greatest promotion night the baseball and wrestling worlds have ever seen - without question. Salute to Pro Wrestling Night August 7....as the great Freddie Miller would say, "Don't miss it - beeee there."
Click here to see photos from our first Salute to Pro Wrestling Night 8.22.18 with Mick Foley and Alicia Atout.
It's good to be the king. Just ask WWE Hall of Famer Jerry Lawler.
Reigning over sports-entertainment since the 1970s, Jerry "The King" Lawler has thrilled in the ring as the pride of Memphis, Tenn. and entertained from the announce table as Raw's most irrepressible broadcaster. Effective as both a hero and villain, The King enraged WWE fans when he offended Bret Hart's parents during a personal rivalry with The Hit Man, and then inspired them when he stepped in the ring to challenge The Miz for the WWE Title at 61 years of age. This aptitude for every aspect of sports-entertainment has earned Lawler countless titles, legions of fans and entry into the WWE Hall of Fame.
First making his name in Memphis, Tenn., Lawler gained national attention for his rivalry with comedian Andy Kaufman. Claiming to be the "Inter-Gender Wrestling Champion of the World," Kaufman made the mistake of insulting The King in front of his hometown crowd in the Mid-South Coliseum in 1982. Lawler responded by blasting the "Taxi" actor with two piledrivers, which led to an incendiary showdown on "Late Night with David Letterman." During a tense interview on the nationally televised program, Kaufman once again offended The King, leading Lawler to slap the comic right out of his chair in front of a shocked studio audience. Fifteen years later, the WWE Hall of Famer recreated this legendary TV moment with Jim Carrey on the set of the Andy Kaufman biopic, "Man on the Moon."
After dispatching Kaufman, The King ruled over promotions like Minnesota's AWA and Tennessee's USWA before finally arriving in WWE in 1992. Caustic from the get-go, Lawler used his sharp wit to rile up rivals like Bret "Hit Man" Hart and Doink the Clown before taking a seat at the announce booth to commentate alongside Jim Ross. Together, the duo formed one of sports-entertainment's most entertaining broadcast teams, as they deftly called the action of WWE's booming "Attitude Era."
Lawler's voice has remained a staple of WWE programming ever since, but that hasn't stopped him from getting in the ring. Often noted as one of the greatest Superstars to never hold the WWE Championship, The King nearly beat The Miz for the coveted title at Elimination Chamber in 2011 and took on his sniveling broadcast partner, Michael Cole, at WrestleMania XXVII. Competing in his fifth decade as a wrestler, Lawler proved that his piledriver - just like his wit - was still as devastating as ever.
Lawler is still active as a wrestler, announcer, and artist; as a softball player in Memphis; as a renowned Superman and Coca-Cola collector; and currently has both a wrestling themed sports bar on Beale Street in Memphis and a barbecue restaurant in the Memphis area.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.