Posts Tagged ‘Pro Wrestling’

zombiepic

For the last 11 years the wrestler currently known as Zombie Dragon has been making his way across the independent pro wrestling circuit. Currently serving as a trainer and roster member of Middle Kingdom Wrestling out of Harbin China, Zombie Dragon took some time to discuss his unique wrestling career.

What are your earliest memories of wrestling?

My earliest memories of pro wrestling were the old WCW and WWF video games like WCW Revenge and WWF Wrestlemania 2000. I used to think as a child, that wrestling was fictional characters only in the gaming world. Until one day I decided to flip through channels and I ended up finding WCW and seeing guys like Psicosis, Raven, and a plethora of other characters that I had previously thought were unreal! From that day I was not only hooked, but decided that wrestling is what I’m going to do.

Do you remember which wrestling show this was?

It was a Monday Nitro. I didn’t recognize anyone until I saw Raven and matched his clothes with the game and I felt a sense of rush if that makes sense.

Was there anything else on the program that really stood out?

Billy Kidman took off Psicosis’ mask is what I can remember.

What made you decide to become a pro wrestler?

Seeing that wrestling can be done, and the overall art of the spectacle were the biggest deciding factors in becoming a pro wrestler. Over the years I discovered more and more wrestling, which drew me in closer and closer to my dream. 

Once you decided to be a wrestler where did you train?

I trained a few places actually. I started with the WWA4 (World Wrestling Alliance 4, out of Atlanta GA) in 2008 right after high school. Then got a few bookings here and there, where I learned on the road, before eventually enrolling in the PCW (Platinum Championship Wrestling, also in Atlanta) academy, where I really learned to hone my craft.

What gimmicks did you wrestle under before Zombie Dragon?

I had a few gimmicks, Curry Kidd being the most notable. Curry Kid was an Indian character with Curry on his head. I was also Rocky Hughes, a rip on Curtis Hughes and Rocky King. Curtis Hughes was my original trainer at WWA4. Rocky King is somewhat of a legend. He used to wrestle in the WWF a long time ago and he has a school in Atlanta. He’s another good friend of mine.

Other gimmicks include 187, who was a thuggish partner for the wrestler Murder One. There was Campus Strike Force, which was like Power Rangers but they were jobbers. I was the yellow one. TMZ, Paper, a rip on the paper rock scissors game, and a few more.

What are the origins of the Zombie Dragon character?

The origins of Zombie Dragon are somewhat remarkable. Pro South Wrestling, in Piedmont, Alabama, let me run absolute wild with this character. For around 6 months Curry Kidd was tied up to the ring post by the Left Hand Path, until they decided to sacrifice him, burn his mask, initiate a ritual, stab him and leave him for dead. This was all done in front of a live audience and was widely accepted as most people have forgotten that Curry and Zombie are the same person. A truly redefined image.

How did you end up coming to China?

Funny story, I trained Uncle Money for his first wrestling match (against my TMZ gimmick) A few months later he moved to China where he found Middle Kingdom Wrestling. After about a year MKW decided to open a training facility where they were open to hiring a trainer from the States, and Uncle Money recommended me, and the rest is history.

Has your family been supportive of your decision to wrestle?

They’ve been super supportive of this entire transition which is surprising. One time I lost my match in Korea against Adam Mayhem in PWS (Pro Wrestling Society) and my Grandma found out so when I called her she was broken down in tears like it was a Championship match! She told me her and the church goers decided to have a special prayer for me not to lose future matches and stay in good health.

Have you experienced any racial prejudice in the business?

The racial prejudice I’ve experienced has been rather odd to say the least. Often times people didn’t realize I was black because under a mask, people only see the character. The times I did deal with any prejudice antics, it usually came from people the same shade of skin as mine, which cuts even deeper.

Along that topic what’s your reaction to Kofi Kingston winning the WWE Title at Wrestlemania?

I loved every minute of it! Here’s a guy who’s been consistently putting out good work, never in trouble, and capitalized off an opportunity to shatter the glass ceiling. I’m extremely proud of him!

In closing do you have a website or anything you’d like to plug?

Sure thing! I’m on: Twitter @Th3zombiedragon

Facebook: Zombie Dragon or Alberto Del Curry

Instagram: The zombiedragon

And wechat/weibo as zombiedragon

 

It may be morbid to acknoweldge but a wrestler death is  a regular part of our news cycle now. We almost expect it. Test died earlier this year at 33, and yesterday Umaga died at 36. Details here

http://sports.yahoo.com/mma/news?slug=ys-wrestlerdeath120509&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

In the last few years a statistic floated around that 100 wrestlers died in the past decade that were under 50, and around 60-70 of them were under 40.  I’m almost 33, so Test was about my age, and Umaga was almost my age when he died.

To anyone my age reading this, this includes many wrestling stars we grew up with as a kid. Junkyard dog, Rick Rude, Big Bossman, Big John Studd, Miss Elizabeth, Earthquake, Bam Bam Bigelow, Dino Bravo, Sensational Sherri, Davey Boy Smith, Crush, Hercules, Road Warrior Hawk, Mr Perfect, Yokuzuna, Saphire, Texas Tornado, and on and on.

I couldn’t find a solid list with all the deaths AND when they happened AND how old they were, but decent one I found is here.

http://www.pwwew.net/people/dead.htm

I can’t help but wonder is it wrong to just not like wrestling anymore? That might be unfair but you don’t see as many fatalities in football, any fightning sport, or racing.

The only comparable thing the comes to mind is rock n roll deaths. Many young rock stars died from accidents, murder, and drug related deaths. That list would include Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, John Bonham, Bon Scott, John Lennon, Randy Rhoads, Cliff Burton, Eric Carr, Kurt Kobain, Michael Jakson, and many more. (If you’re curious, look here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_deaths_in_rock_and_roll)

Even still, I don’t think you have so many young rock n roll deaths in such a short period of time.

What is it about wrestling that has lost so many young active people this past 10-12 years? Drugs, steriods, the grueling touring schedule? Bret Hart said he would have liked to have been home just one Christmas for his kids. If a wrestling event ever comes near my home on Christmas day, I will not go. Sometimes I’m not sure if I’d go period.

What do you think?