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Pro Wrestling Illustrated

Pro Wrestling Illustrated April 2021

Published every other month, the magazine’s mission is to bring our readers right to the ringside with brilliant, high-impact photography and to inform and entertain readers about the Pro Wrestling world. Get Pro Wrestling Illustrated digital magazine subscription today to get unbiased coverage of every major promotion and wrestling news.

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United States
Kappa Publishing Group, Inc.
9 Issues

in this issue

3 min
from the desk of …

BY THE TIME you read this, 2020 will officially be in the rearview mirror. This was a difficult year for wrestling. Government-mandated shutdowns led promotions around the world to shutter their doors … some never to reopen. Economic concerns forced reliable venues to close, as well as some journeyman independent grapplers to hang up their boots for good. With independent wrestling events shut down worldwide, the #SpeakingOut movement offered survivors of abuse and assault a receptive audience to share their stories. While the movement was inspiring, the alleged conditions that led to it were, of course, anything but. WWE and AEW continued to operate, running shows throughout the pandemic. Each company was impacted at various points by COVID—not only because of lost revenue, but by talent and crew who either contracted the…

11 min

CAN AEW AND Impact Wrestling work together? And, if so, for how long? Those were the burning questions at the end of AEW’s “Winter Is Coming” special on December 2, arguably the most consequential two hours in the short history of the company. Kenny Omega ended Jon Moxley’s nine-month World title reign with the ringside support of longtime friend Don Callis. Omega is an executive vice president of AEW. Callis, in addition to his role as Impact color commentator and inter-promotional meddler, is also executive vice president of Impact Wrestling. Is there more or less than meets the eye here? It was significant that Omega made his first appearance as AEW champion at Impact’s Final Resolution, streaming on Impact Plus and FITE TV. Callis referred to Omega meeting up with fellow Bullet…

2 min
2020 achievement awards

ONLY ON ONE occasion has our Editors’ Award for Lifetime Achievement been given out twice in a single year. In 1988, we chose to honor Adrian Adonis and Bruiser Brody—both of whom had been tragically killed in their prime. This year, we are once again choosing to honor two recipients. Thankfully, both of them are very much alive and well! The reason for the change is simple: There are just so many deserving individuals who deserve to be recognized for their contributions to the wrestling industry. And, just as Hall of Fame classes in sports and entertainment usually consist of several inductees, we thought it made sense to honor at least two people in a given year. Apart from dual Stanley Weston Awards, longtime readers will notice a few other surprises in…

3 min
rookie of the year

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYEstrnYwa8 IT HAS BEEN said that with great opportunity comes great expectation. And, indeed, the wrestling highway is littered with the memories of sons who failed to break down doors that their famous last names may have opened for them. Imagine, then, the expectation that comes with not only being the son of a successful wrestler, but the son of perhaps the greatest high-flyer in wrestling history. Thankfully for Dominik Mysterio, the 23-year-old not only lived up to those expectations during his maiden year in the ring, but was impressive enough for our readers to overwhelmingly select him as Rookie of the Year. Some cynical eyes may have rolled when Dominik began appearing on WWE television without so much as a stint in NXT. But even the harshest of critics had to…

3 min
most improved wrestler

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQyZvFNbMuA TO SAY THAT someone has “improved” carries the implication that the person in question may not have been so great to begin with. But, in the case of this year’s award winner, it’s more of a confirmation that they had a year where they finally achieved what many believed to be their destiny. When Drew McIntyre first arrived in WWE, an authority no less than Vince McMahon himself proclaimed the Scot to be “The Chosen One.” And while that proclamation seemed ridiculous a few years later as he was gyrating around as a member of Three Man Band, the Drew McIntyre who reemerged in NXT in 2017 after a three-year stint away from WWE was a different beast than the one who had been fired in 2014. Darker, disciplined, and more…

3 min
inspirational wrestler

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynTyA012hwQ AT 2:15 A.M. on May 20, lifeguards responded to reports of a body seen along the Venice Beach shoreline in Los Angeles. A short time later, authorities were able to confirm the news that many had feared was coming: The body was that of former WWE wrestler Shad Gaspard. Gaspard had gone swimming with his 10-year-old son the previous Sunday when a sudden riptide pulled them out to sea. Lifeguards managed to briefly speak to Gaspard, who instructed them to save his son first. Just moments later, a wave crashed over him, and he disappeared underwater. In the ensuing days, search parties frantically looked for Gaspard to no avail. Then, in the early hours of Wednesday morning, the tragic news came through that he had drowned. Gaspard was 39 years old. Tributes…