“It Begins”: Answer Is Right In Front Of Us, A Roast W/ Legends

Justin LaBar

All That I Learned From Wrestling Legends

Last weekend I attended roast and lunch with wrestling legend Dominic DeNucci. If you don't know who that is, go do your research. I say that because I have seen comments of a younger generation who consider themselves “the end all be all” in wrestling commentary but yet have no clue who Dominic DeNucci is.

DeNucci was a big star in the 60's and 70's. He's worked matches in the ring over a span of four decades and is stepping in the ring for a special appearance in 2012. As impressive as DeNucci's in-ring career was, he has made himself just as famous if not more, by being a trainer. Mick Foley being the most recognizable name who was trained by DeNucci.

A list of stars from yesterday including George “The Animal” Steele, Irish Davey O'Hannon, Nick “The Bully” Busick, Larry Sharpe, Johnny DeFazio and many more. Current TNA star Matt Morgan was also in attendance. No, none of these guys with the exception of Morgan, come up today in daily wrestling conversation, but it was still a tremendous experience.

The stories to hear, the things I learned about the business from one-on-one conversations were fantastic. A book could be written from the stories told by those guys from the past and those stories that came from the day that included the roast, a local wrestling show and the bar that ended the night. You take in account all of the knowledge one can gain about the business from the individual conversations, it was a vault of information for any wrestling fan.

I sat back in the middle of lunch and thought about all of the matches worked, different opponents they worked with, miles logged, hotels stayed in, ladies met and alcohol drank during the era that was the setting for many of the stories during the roast portion of the event. I took in the fraternity that these guys are forever apart of, along with start of today like Matt Morgan paying homage to the legends. All of this combined gave me bursts of positive emotion that remind me why the wrestling business is so special.

Football, baseball, basketball, hockey, soccer and any other sport all have a fraternal locker room with its own language. However, in my opinion none of them have it to the extent that pro-wrestling does.

During this event, it was announced for the first time to any audience that Dominic DeNucci would be inducted in the Pro Wrestling Hall Of Fame in 2012. Not the WWE's HOF that you see every WrestleMania weekend, but the Pro Wrestling Hall Of Fame, who I think does a tremendous job of categorizing the stars in each class. If you can get to Amsterdam, NY, in May of 2012, I suggest you make the trip. You will be there to see the induction of DeNucci, Junkyard Dog, Jim Cornette, Wendi Richter, The Wild Samoans and others.

A lot of things get said about the sport and entertainment genre that we all love from people who are uneducated on it. It's fake, it's dumb, it's gay, it's a bunch of guys on steroids and many other phrases. I could go on for hours fighting back the detractors who question the legitimacy. I'll end with a simple statement:

A day around those legends, I dare you to question the legitimacy of professional wrestling's ability to spawn friends, memories and scars that are more important to you than any others and you will have all of them until you die.

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