Bobby, I’m going to do you a huge favor here. I’m not going to treat you as if you’re some sort of three-ring circus act- even though you’ve often presented yourself as one.
HOW Refueled XXI- April 11th, 2021: The Egg Bandits (Cancer Jiles and Bobby Dean) vs. PBR (Joe Bergman and Steve Solex)
As Jiles battles Solex in the ring, HOW’s lead announcer Joe Hoffman notices an enticing smell coming from the stage.
HOW’s color commentator Benny Newell sniffs the air. “Nope. Wasn’t me.”
Joe and Benny spot a new face – it’s PBR’s bleach-blonde valet Barbie-Q. She has arrived with a platter of freshly grilled delicacies that quickly fill the arena with mouthwatering aromas. Bobby light up like a kid at Christmas when he sets his eyes on the smorgasbord of culinary delights stacked up on Barbie-Q’s plate. Barbie-Q bat her eyes and gestures to Bobby to ‘come here’ with her finger.
Joe comments, “Oh. That’s not fair.”
Cancer Jiles turns around and finds Dean has disappeared. Jiles yells “BOBBY?” and spots him, mesmerized by the steaks, burgers, and brats piled up on the platter- seduced by the siren song of sumptuous beef (it’s what’s for dinner) – and following Barbie-Q up the ramp towards the buffet of bountiful food awaiting him.
“BOBBY! YOU GET YOUR ASS RIGHT BACK HERE!”
Solex grabs Jiles and throws him into the ring. Bergman is there to meet him with a GREEN MIST! Blinded, Jiles turns back towards the center – Solex runs through him with THE CLOTHESLINE FROM HECK!
When I stepped into the ring against Cecilworth Farthington, even though I was still sulking about what went down at Culture Shock, deep down, deep down I still wanted to face Farthington at his best. The same with Hayes Hanlon… two-time Universal champion and former Five Star champion. I wanted Hanlon’s best effort. Why? It was a measuring stick… where did Adam Ellis fit in against two of PRIME’s best wrestlers… and a learning opportunity… what could I take away from the matches… what could I learn.
Fact: Bobby Dean is sVo’s top champion.
That’s right, Bobby… you are the champion of sVo. That alone means you’ve earned a certain amount of respect from me because you’ve shown that when you do put your mind to it, you are still a formidable wrestler. So I will not treat you like a carnival sideshow act you’ve often presented yourself to be in PRIME and High Octane Wrestling because right now- you hold the sVo title. So, that means I’d better bring your best game to Washington, DC on Friday July 14th and I’d better get ready for the fight of my life. Because when we step into the ring against each other, it’s going to be all about heart, determination, and willpower. I’m not going to disrespect you, disregard you, and chalk up our upcoming match as an automatic win. Nope, I am going to treat you with the respect a champion who has fought his way to the top of sVo deserves. That’s right Bobby, I’ll give you the respect you deserve.
But that’s where it stops.
At Tropical Trauma, I finally got my breakthrough pay-per-view win and I’ll be honest with you, I was ecstatic. I made a statement that night… to others and myself… and overcame the crisis of confidence I came out of Culture Shock with to get the victory of Tristin-Crispin Gladhappy. I hope everyone who watched the match that night realizes that I’m here for the long haul. I needed a statement win to prove to myself and answer the question about whether I was going to sink or swim in PRIME… to make sure everyone believed in me as much as Charlie Blackwell and others did. I finally got my chance at Tropical Trauma and it was everything I could have hoped for! After a tough battle with TCG, despite Vickie Hall’s interference… (Thank you, Ginny, for stepping in there and taking care of Vickie) …I raised my arm in victory. But that’s not the end for me, it’s only the beginning. The next step is waiting and I’m ready to take it on!
At twenty-two, I have been privileged to have wrestled in more places and companies than a young kid from rural Missouri could ever allow himself to dream of. The lessons I’ve learned with the help of so many people have made me into a much better wrestler… much better than the young kid who showed up in PRIME last year had any right to expect. I have trained relentlessly for nine months, tested and tried in PRIME’s ring. Every match I’ve fought in PRIME has sharpened me into a better wrestler, faster and stronger, and smarter than ever before. Bobby Dean won’t know what hit him when he steps into the ring with me. There’s no way Bobby Dean can expect to steamroll over me now, no matter how much he may think he can. So bring your best game, Bobby Dean. Bring it all. I don’t want Bobby Dean the circus act who can be lured away merely by the scent of food… no matter how good it may be. I want the Bobby Dean who’s got some fight in him… I want a Bobby Dean who thinks he’ll just walk right over me. I want the Bobby Dean who put up the fight we all saw when Bobby and Jiles beat Joe Bergman and Steve Solex last year to win the HOTv Tag Team Title … the Bobby Dean who last year held sVo’s Roulette title for over 90 days… the Bobby Dean who just defeated Big Aug in May to win the sVo title to show up in Washington, DC for our match.
So Bobby Dean, bring your best game… prepare yourself – be ready for an all-out battle that leaves no room for error because only one man is walking away from this match. On July 14th, Adam Ellis will march to the ring with purpose, battle-ready, and determined to leave with a victory under my belt. When I get to Washington, DC on July 14th, it won’t matter what it takes, how long it lasts, or how brutal it gets – I will go into the ring with the belief that Adam Ellis will come out on top and I will do everything possible to make sure I do. Bobby, you’d better be prepared – next Friday night you are going up against an unstoppable force of raw ability and unbridled determination to leave with victory. You better be ready for a fight that leaves no room for error – no matter what, I’m ready to take on this battle head first and leave the ring with a victory under my belt- nothing will be enough to stop me from winning.
And when all is said and done, when the final bell rings at the end of the match there will be no question of who stands victorious – it will be me.
MVW’s Special Edition of 6:05- Saturday July 8th– Grand Sports Arena/Hoffman Estates, IL
Adam Ellis sat in the bleachers with Missouri Valley Wrestling’s minority owner Joe Bergman to watch the Cletus T. Johnson-Buckshot Henderson match. The action was intense inside the filled arena of a few hundred people.
“Good to see Ginny working with her cousins again,” Joe remarked.
“Yeah,” Adam replied.
Cletus T. Johnson belonged to a MVW faction known as The Kentucky Redneck Mafia, alongside his brother Enos T. Johnson and hailed from the same rural area where Ginny had grown up in Kentucky. They were rough and tumble men who had seen their fair share of bar brawls and back-alley scuffles. They also had some success in Missouri Valley Wrestling, winning the Men’s Tag Team title in 2021.
In Cletus’s corner stood Ginny Van Lear, his cousin, and valet. She cheered and yelled words of encouragement to her kin as watched every move that Henderson made. Ellis leaned forward in his seat, barely able to contain himself. “Look at Ginny go,” he said and smiled.
“Ginny’s a real trooper,” Joe replied. “And she’s learning fast.”
Cletus’s opponent that night was Buckshot Henderson- a rough-and-tumble old-school Southern wrestler. A tough opponent no doubt but for Cletus, this wasn’t just about pride or reputation. This was about family honor. His brother Enos was injured recently and Cletus felt he needed to pick up the slack for a while in singles.
As the match wore on, Henderson became increasingly aggressive. With every punch he landed on Cletus, Ginny felt her blood boil hotter and hotter. Then it happened – Henderson hurled Cletus over the top rope and sent him hurtling toward the floor near Henderson’s valet Lillie Mae.
And then it happened. Henderson’s valet Lillie Mae stuck in a quick kick on Cletus on the floor. But before anyone else could react, Ginny flew around the ring like a missile and launched herself in the air… her right leg fully extended… and knocked Lillie Mae out with a powerful kick to the face. Lillie ended up slamming into the steel barricade as the crowd went wild.
“Joe! Did you just see that?!” Adam yelled incredulously.
Joe chuckled and replied, “Yeah man…that was something else. The kick was a thing of beauty, Adam.”
“Ginny soared through the air like an eagle hunting and then attacking its prey,” Adam gushed.
“Something like that,” Joe returned.
As both men lay sprawled out on the mat, Henderson attempted to gain control with a waist lock. But before he could execute his move, Cletus slammed his elbow into Henderson’s unsuspecting face. Sensing an opportunity, Cletus grabbed a nearby chair from under the ring and swung it with all his might, hitting Buckshot hard in the back and sending him crashing to the ground once again. As Henderson struggled to regain his bearings, Cletus swiftly delivered another blow to Buckshot’s face, sending him tumbling down to the mat yet again.
“Cletus appears upset,” Joe said.
Adam held his index finger and thumb close together. “Just a little. I’ve seen Cletus upset. Cletus has been upset with me. Trust me… it’s not fun.”
Cletus pulled Henderson back to his feet… WHAP… and waffled him again in the back sending Henderson face-first to the mat. With Buckshot now down for the count, Cletus rolled back into the ring while Henderson somehow managed to crawl his way back into the ring by the skin of his teeth.
Cletus threw his right hand at Henderson’s head and to his belly.
Joe leaned forward, “Buckshot’s got a thick coat of fat on his upper body, legs, and arms, but he has surprisingly lean muscle underneath, but it’s all concentrated around his chest. So when Cletus throws his blows they land with their full force only to be absorbed by Henderson’s fat.”
“I see,” Adam said.
“Details,” Joe advised. “It’s all about recognizing the little details in your opponent that can help you win a match. Like the one you have next Friday against Bobby Dean.”
The light of revelation turned on. “Oh,” Adam said. “You mean-“
“You’ll probably need to steer clear of Bobby Dean’s big, fat belly and concentrate your attack elsewhere.” Joe glanced into the air to think. “Do you have a submission finisher?”
“Like a sleeper or so?” Adam replied.
“Yes. Bobby’s frame will be a lot harder to carry around the ring when he’s half asleep,” Joe explained.
Henderson started throwing knife-edged chops at Cletus’s torso. Cletus fired back with the right hands that snaps Henderson’s head back. Finally, his chest turning bright red from Henderson’s chops, Cletus lets out a war cry and nails Henderson with one of his boots directly to the jaw driving Buckshot flying backward. He bends down a lifts up both of Henderson’s legs and places Henderson onto his left shoulder into a vertical position. Then Cletus drops down to a seated position driving Henderson head first to the mat.
“That should do it,” Joe remarked.
“The good ol’ Kentucky Hoe-Down,” added Adam.
“Not a fun move to take. I presume.”
“Understatement.” Adam knew all about the Kentucky Redneck Mafia’s finisher having experienced it a few times in his young career.
With the crowd on their feet, Cletus scrambled over to pin his opponent to the mat. Referee Ron Martin quickly positions himself to begin the count…1 …2 …THREE!
The bell sounded and the cheering of the crowd echoed throughout the stadium. Ginny rolled into the ring to congratulate the victorious Cletus T. Johnson on his hard-fought triumph.
”He did good tonight,” Joe said, impressed with Cletus’s performance tonight. “I think Cletus will do well wrestling singles until Enos gets over his injury.”
Ginny walked over to the ropes in front of where Adam and Joe sat. She waved to her husband and blew him a kiss before she went to the back with Cletus.
“Shall we head to the back?” Joe asked.
Adam and Joe stood up and made their way past a few seated people before they reached the aisle and headed toward the back.
Backstage After the Show
Adam walked through the curtain and was met with a swarm of people he had known during his stint at Missouri Valley Wrestling… people like R.G. Jenkins and Mark Hendry aka The Alabama Gang, Rick Beam-Country Club Pro, Jack from State Barn Insurance, Bob Zardoz, Super Doug Osborn, Bill E. Zane, and Bo Bevans- Down at the Farm. As he bantered away with his old friends, he noticed a familiar face out of the corner of his eye. Victoria McGill, or as everyone tended to call her, Tori.
Tori McGill towered over most women at a statuesque six foot two, her lithe figure only weighing in at an astonishing 140 pounds. She had gorgeous long legs that seemed to extend for miles. Her flaxen hair reached medium length and always framed her face gracefully. But it was her makeup that truly caught everyone’s attention – the way her eyes were accentuated with blues and purples. She paused to remove a spot of ice cream from her sweatshirt, dressed in comfortable jeans and tennis shoes.
Tori’s a former Missouri Valley Wrestling Women’s Champion and Women’s Heartland Champion, having earned the belt five separate times. Adam hadn’t seen her since he saw last year in the backstage area. He and Ginny were just getting together… (Ginny just happened to be waiting for Adam in the shower room- but that’s a whole other story)… while he was talking with Tori. Adam and Tori had been close friends and even though they had never crossed any serious lines, rumor in the locker room claimed that there once had been something between them. And maybe there could have been but it wasn’t meant to be.
Adam was anxious to catch up with his old friend, but things had certainly changed between them since then. Adam married Ginny. Tori lost the MVW Women’s title and also lost her way. She ended up going to Japan for a while and wrestling then before she returned to MVW.
Adam finally mustered the courage to approach her.
“Hey Tori!” he called out to her.
Tori whipped her head around… “ADDDD-DAMMMMM!”
“It’s good to-ACK!” Adam’s response is interrupted when Tori lurched forward and enveloped him with her arms into a giant hug.
“Oh my god, how have you been?” she asked.
“Doing good. Just here to watch Ginny tonight.”
Their conversation slowly began to flow…
“I see,” Tori said. “That was a sweet kick she delivered tonight. I’d sure hate to be Lillie Mae right now.”
… but it felt odd to Adam. He remembered a couple of nights last year when he and Tori would talk on the phone for hours on end about anything and everything… almost like a couple of high school sweethearts.
“I see you returned to Jill Berg Enterprises,” Adam brought up.
Tori nodded her head. “Yeah. I didn’t see that coming but ‘Sports Entertainment Genius’ Mr. McMann really pushed the idea and I thought a change might do me some good.”
Tori expanded on her return to Jill Berg Enterprises and told Adam how she’s been pushing herself further than ever before in the ring.
“Well, as long as they don’t expect you to take any more topless pictures on the beach,” Adam joked.
“Yeah, that’s so not happening,” Tori confirmed. Long story. Jill Berg’s idea. Tori hated it. Moving on.
By the time they parted ways, Adam realized that even though things between them were different now, there was still a bond between them from back when they worked together at MVW.
“It’s good to see you again,” Tori said with a half-smile.
“Adam!” a high-pitched voice shouted out.
Adam turned and saw Ginny walking down the path toward them.
“There you are. Adam, I’ve been looking everywhere for you!” Ginny said breathlessly. After her shower, Ginny dressed up in a cute outfit of yellow shoes, a light blue skirt, and a matching sleeveless blouse. A small gold cross hung from her neck on a delicate chain and matched her earrings too. Her red hair was still a little wet.
“Hi, Ginny!” Adam said with a wave.
Ginny then recognized the tall blond Adam’s talking to. “Oh, hello, Victoria,” she said.
“Ginny,” Tori responded. “I thought you did a really good job out there tonight.”
“Thanks,” Ginny coldly replied. For some reason, there’s tension between the two girls and it’s very noticeable when both stare each other down in silence.
“That’s right, Ginny,” Adam chimed in. “That’s one of the best kicks I’ve ever seen you deliver.”
Ginny reached up and kissed him and Tori sensed the time had come for her to make her exit.
“Well, good seeing you again Adam. Keep doing what you’re doing.” Tori smiled before she walked away with Ginny keeping a close eye on her.
“Good seeing you too!” Adam said with one last, half-hearted wave.
“So what did she want?” Ginny asked in a decidedly curt tone.
Adam took a deep breath and released it slowly, bracing himself for what was to come. The one big thing he’s definitely learned about Ginny over the past year is she’s got a really bad jealous streak… that can turn her into a raging inferno at the drop of a hat. He remembers all too well her reaction to Sunny O’Callahan flashing him at a recent Texas Championship Wrestling show – the way her eyes had blazed with fury, her fists clenched so tight that her nails had dug into her palms. Adam knows Ginny is fiercely protective and most times, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
So he softly began to explain, trying to defuse her temper. “Honey,” he started, his voice gentle and calm, “I haven’t seen Tori since last year when we ran into each other backstage at a Missouri Valley Wrestling show. I remember that she told me she’d heard about you and me getting together.”
This surprised Ginny. “She did?”
Yes. After Tori had kissed Adam on the cheek to say goodbye, she whispered “Oh, and watch it with the Van Lear girl” in his ear. Adam became alarmed. “Shit. People know?” “Everyone knows, Adam,” Tori confirmed since the news had spread like wildfire throughout the MVW backstage… well, except for Ginny’s cousins Cletus and Enos who were not two of the brightest bulbs in the building. Then with a reassuring smile, Tori bid Adam farewell and left.
“She did,” Adam confirmed. “We were catching up like old times while I was waiting for you to come out.”
“Oh.” Ginny bit her lip as she looked into Adam’s eyes. “Ah’m sorry. Ah-Ah didn’t mean tuh fly off th’ handle like that. Ah guess Ah just don’t handle somethin’ like this very well.”
“It’s okay,” Adam comforted her, reaching forward and pulling her to him for an embrace. “We’re in this together. You and me.”
Ginny nuzzled his shoulder. “Ya reckon yer gonna let me go buck bomb Vickie Hall’s dressin’ room at next week’s show?”
Adam smiled and laughed as he ran his hand through Ginny’s bright red locks of hair. “I love you Ginny.”
“I luv you too..”