On November 2nd, Major League Wrestling presented their first-ever pay-per-view entitled Saturday Night SuperFight. Before the main card began, there were four pre-show matches that were streamed live from Cicero Stadium on the MLW YouTube channel and one of four matches that took place on the pre-show was Gino Medina versus the 20-year old Air Wolf. Air Wolf fell in defeat in the match but had a showing that earned him a good deal of praise on social media from those who were watching the show. One of the moves that Air Wolf has incorporated into his move-set that he pulled off during his match against Gino Medina is the bottom rope 619.
While speaking with Air Wolf, he told POST Wrestling about his thought process when it comes to trying to stand out with his move-set. He is aware that the 619 is synonymous with former 3-time WWE World Champion Rey Mysterio but wanted to use the move to pay homage to Mysterio but put his own spin on it.
“So, one thing with me is, I really like to be innovative. I like to show people things they haven’t necessarily seen before. So, if it’s a move I think I’ve seen before — something as signature as the 619 is obviously related to Rey Mysterio. Whenever you think of it, you think of Rey Mysterio. Not that I’m trying to not make them think of Rey Mysterio because usually I do call that move the Mysteri-low,” he laughed. “But I definitely like to be innovative. I do a couple of other moves. Like I do a step-through Shooting Star Press that I call the ‘Lunar Eclipse’ so I really just try to innovate so that’ll help me stand out in the long run.”
Air Wolf began training just three years ago at ‘The Academy: School Of Professional Wrestling’ in Minnesota. He is the first graduate of the academy and was trained by Ken Anderson, Shawn and Ariya Daivari, Molly Holly and Arik Cannon. Each of those names offered different bits and pieces of advice to Air Wolf that allowed him to have a diverse outlook on the wrestling business. He expressed that they all brought something different to the table and spoke in detail about what he learned from his trainers.
“See, the thing with the academy was, at my time, having all those coaches there, each of them I felt like they brought a little something different to the table. People like Ken Anderson and Shawn Daivari, for the most part, their career was under the WWE banner so they’re more familiar with the sports-entertainment side, but then having a man like Arik Cannon as well respected as he is in the business on an independent scene level, he just knows his way around the independents and how to get to certain places.”
Air Wolf is deeply-rooted in Minnesota as that is where he hails from and he has become a staple in the F1RST Wrestling promotion which is based in Minnesota as well. His trainer, Arik Cannon runs F1RST Wrestling and Air Wolf was the man to end Cannon’s 500-day reign as Wrestlepalooza Champion. Air Wolf has surpassed Cannon’s 500-day mark. He said that the promotion is his home and had it not been for the guidance of Arik Cannon, he would not be where he is at today.
“No matter where I go, F1RST Wrestling is probably gonna be my home because that’s Arik Cannon’s promotion and Arik Cannon… if it wasn’t for Arik Cannon, I probably wouldn’t be where I’m at today. Arik Cannon has definitely taken me under his wing and helped guide me to certain places in wrestling today.”
F1RST Wrestling has also seen Angel Dorado in action who Air Wolf said is his younger brother. Dorado also trained under Ken Anderson, the Daivari brothers, Molly Holly and Arik Cannon. Dorado is 18 years of age and Air Wolf is very high on the potential of Dorado. He talked about the aerial move-set that Angel has put together and is hoping that he has a breakout moment soon. He concluded his praise of his younger brother by saying that he could turn out to be the best high flyer in the business.
“So actually, even though he doesn’t look like it, Angel Dorado, he’s my little brother. He’s a year younger than me. He’s crazy talented. I’m hoping that he’s just gonna blow up soon because he’s a really good diver and can do just a lot of insane body control stuff and I honestly with all my heart believe he has the potential to become the top flyer in the world.”
Several wrestlers that I’ve interviewed in the past have shared positive experiences that they’ve had in the AAW promotion. Air Wolf is another competitor that consistently wrestles for AAW and will be in action at the promotion’s November 30th show in Chicago, Illinois. Air Wolf described AAW as the “all-star game of the Midwest” and echoed the sentiments of other wrestlers who have competed in the promotion and that is that AAW helped him improve as a wrestler.
“Yeah absolutely. AAW, I think of it kind of as an all-star game of the Midwest. There’s a lot of the top talent in the world coming to this one spot to compete and that’s a level where you wanna be at, especially for a guy like myself. You wanna always wrestle people that are better than you because that’s how you improve. So, going to AAW and getting the opportunity to wrestle these dudes is gonna help me improve tenfold, just like that.”
With a handful of wrestlers from the independent scene signing exclusive contracts, it does takes talents away from the independents. Air Wolf gave his thoughts about the state of the independent wrestling scene and feels like it is in a great spot and thinks wrestling as a whole is thriving.
“Oh yeah dude, wrestling is in a great state right now. I mean you have things like AEW and it’s providing an alternative to WWE, and both things are great. Wrestling is just great all around. New Japan is killing it right now. You have cool stuff in Mexico. On every level, I think wrestling, right now is starting to get hot again.”
At the age of 20 years old, Air Wolf has an entire career ahead of him. I asked him where does he see himself in five years and what will his Wikipedia page look like in the coming years as he continues to establish his name. He stated that he wants to compete for PWG, possibly Ring of Honor, head overseas to the United Kingdom and/or Japan and just wants to go where he’ll be able to take bits and pieces from those who are experienced in wrestling and incorporate that into his game as he progresses.
“Dude, there’s so many places I want to go. It’s ridiculous to even list. Right now, I want to be a regular at AAW for sure. I definitely want to go to PWG. That’s one of my goals in the long run. Maybe Ring of Honor, I wanna go overseas for sure. I feel like getting to learn that technical side in the U.K. or going to Japan. That’s definitely on my list of things to do in wrestling.”
As mentioned, Air Wolf will be in action at AAW’s November 30th show in Chicago. Some of his highlights can be watched on his YouTube channel and he can be found on Twitter and Instagram @officialairwolf. The audio from our conversation can be heard on the Andrew Thompson Interviews YouTube channel.