Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking with legendary wrestler turned well-respected trainer Al Snow about pretty much everything from his memories of teaming with Mick Foley, to running his very own Al Snow Wrestling Academy.
The former WWE Tag Team, Hardcore and European Champion, though, also opened up about buying OVW last year, and what he's changed in the promotion.
Yeah, I bought OVW from Danny Davis last year. It's been a whirlwind! As far as what has changed, I think I've really been trying to push and direct the talent to live up to their potential, really directing them and training them to be everything they could possibly be - and to that end, we've done a lot of big live events, live television broadcasts.
Last October, the first one of those we ever did live was our 1000th television episode, on October 10th. The only other television production that has that many consecutive episodes is WWE RAW, and SmackDown had their 1000th recently.
Since then, we've done several live television broadcasts and pay-per-views on Fite TV. We're going to do a tribute to the US Military at an army base on June 14th, live, and we're going to televise that on our broadcast television station here in Louisville, and we're going to do it live as a pay-per-view on Fite TV, and we're going to broadcast it on the armed forces network, American Forces Network, all around the world.
I'm trying to do a lot to expand the reach of television. We have a library of content that ranges from episode 57 to 1,028 and we have 100 monthly specials next month. May 11th will be our 100th monthly special that we do at the arena, so I've created a streaming network, with ovwwrestlingnetwork.com - and that's $4.99 a month, and we're creating other shows so it's not just our weekly or monthly shows, and you can get it anywhere in the world.
A lot of people thought the brand had died, but it's been going for nearly 30 years, so it's just about getting the name out there and growing it even further!
We also have provisional approval here from the State system here in Kentucky to be designated as the first ever actual professional wrestling trade school. When young men and women are coming to attend, this is so big because you won't just learn how to wrestle in the ring.
It's a two-year course where we'll teach them backstage production, editing, directing, producing, writing, financial management, live event management, etc so they know all aspects of professional wrestling, but also of entertaining and broadcasting. It's a two-year course and we're holding, for the first ever one, we're inviting 300 athletes from all over the world to Louisville. We've sat down and developed quantifiable metrics that we can evaluate athletes on their performance and their ability to succeed at professional wrestling.
It's not a seminar, it's not a camp, it's not training. We can evaluate you using the DARI system, and it evaluates your biomechanics and metrics to determine your athletic ceiling and the potential for an injury based on biomechanics. If people want this, we're awarding the 15 athletes with the highest overall scores, both men and women competing for the first time ever, competing for the same course, we're investing $500,000 to award these men and women scholarships to attend the schools, and they'll have their dorm facilities taken care of, we have job placements so they can work while attending to pay their bills.
Wrestling always has a great entry plan but, until now, it's never really had a great exit plan. This way, athletes can actually have skills so, once their in-ring careers are over, they can continue a career in professional wrestling behind the scenes.
We just asked The Shockmaster about Vince McMahon's retirement here