For the third time in the past five months, the Premiere Wrestling Xperience (PWX) invades the Hickory Metro Convention Center on Saturday.
The wrestling promotion, which has been in existence since 2003, features some of the top independent professional wrestlers in the country.
PWX hosted shows in Hickory in both September and November of 2013. Promoter Brian Kanabroski received positive feedback in the product from area wrestling fans.
“From the town, the response has been phenomenal,” Kanabroski said. “The fans have been phenomenal.”
The biggest reaction came from both active duty military and veterans.
“This month and for all future Hickory shows because of the larger veteran and active military, tickets are $7 off,” Kanabroski said. “Active military are free with a military ID.”
PWX currently has a trio of shows two weekends a month, but hopes to expand that.
By the end of this calendar year, Kanabroski would like to have shows operating regularly in Hickory, Concord, Tremont, Asheville, High Point, Wilmington and Winston-Salem.
Kanabroski wants to mold his product after the classic bloodlines of the sport.
“Jim Crockett created the cook book on wrestling promotions in North Carolina,” Kanabroski said. “I’m just following the recipe.”
Caleb Konley, the current PWX Heavyweight Champion, said fans attending Saturday’s “Taken By Force” show can anticipate a lot of action.
“You can expect excitement,” Konley said. “There is a lot of personality. We try to keep things family friendly.”
Kanabroski said his organization tires to live up to certain standards.
“The Premiere Wrestling Xperience — it’s that name for a reason,” he said. “Premiere meaning first and high quality. The wrestling is what it is — wrestling. We aren’t a sports entertainment company. We are a wrestling promotion. A lot of casual fans don’t know, but there is a difference from a wrestling company and a sports entertainment company.”
Sometimes, that wrestling gets up close and personal for each ticket holder.
“There’s a lot more high flying, flash action,” he said. “You’re going to get a lot more crowd interaction. I put out a little disclaimer in the front row that you may have to move somewhere throughout the show if we have a guy jump over the top and on to the floor.”
Ticket holders also have an added benefit of being featured on the promotion’s television show, which airs Saturdays at 5 a.m. on WCCB-TV in Charlotte.
“The crowd is small enough to where if you sit in the front row, you can get on our HD cameras,” Kanabroski said.
Several of the top independent wrestlers in the country will be featured at the “Taken By Force” show, including “The American Wolf” Davey Richards, Kevin Steen, Kyle O’Reilly, Michael Elgin and Cedric Alexander.
One of the main attraction matches on Saturday’s event card features Konley against Rich Swann for the PWX Heavyweight Championship.
It’s a match Konley is anxious for.
“Rich is an awesome wrestler,” Konley said. “He travels all over Japan. He is an incredible high-flyer. He is incredibly entertaining. He is awesome. I have wrestled him several times in tag team matches, but not in a singles match. I feel like we match up well. The fans of Hickory should expect a really good match.”
Tickets for “Taken By Force” can be purchased both in person and at the promotion’s website, www.pwxprowrestling.com .
Front row seats are $25 and include a special meet and greet session. General admission tickets are $15, while children 10 and under are $5.
“The people of Hickory and the people who own the businesses were happy to see us come,” Konley said. “We are a small company, but we are growing.”