March madness: Wrestling in Chicago approaches fever pitch
By Mike Pankow
March 1, 2019
Has there ever been a month of pro wrestling in the Chicago area any bigger than what’s coming in March 2019?
With several local promotions putting on a dynamite lineups, conventions with some A-list special guests and national promotions coming through with TV shows and tapings, there will be plenty of shows from which to choose.
WWE makes its return to the Allstate Arena for Monday Night Raw on March 18 and with WrestleMania just weeks away, the storylines toward the annual extravaganza will be on fire, especially with Batista back in the fold for a likely match against Triple H and the evolving Becky Lynch-Ronda Rousey-Charlotte Flair drama.
MLW is back at Cicero Stadium on March 2 for TV tapings and “Intimidation Games,” featuring a rematch between “Filthy” Tom Lawlor and Low Ki for the MLW Championship in a steel cage. The promotion sold out in Cicero last fall and is already slated for another show on July 6. If you can’t make it out to Saturday’s show, part of it will be shown live on beIN SPORTS.
Women’s promotions RISE and SHIMMER take over the Berwyn Eagles Club from March 29-31. RISE will have a loaded show on Friday the 29th while SHIMMER will tape four supershows over two days of doubleheaders on the 30th and 31st. RISE promises “the largest women’s roster of women’s wrestlers ever assembled,” including Chicago-area native Kylie Rae, Mercedes Martinez and Su Yung, in addition to running a mini-convention during the afternoon.
After three dynamic shows, Warrior Wrestling presents its fourth show at Marian Catholic High School on March 15 with the main event being the barnburner of AEW-bound So Cal Uncensored (Christopher Daniels, Frankie Kazarian and Scorpio Sky) against oVe (Sami Callihan and Dave and Jake Crist) along with Brian Cage defending his Warrior Wrestling Championship against all three members of the Rascalz (Dezmond Xavier, Trey Miguel and Zachary Wentz) in a four-way match. Also, in a rematch from Warrior Wrestling 3, Eddie Edwards faces Austin Aries.
AAW Pro is bringing veteran luchadors Psicosis and Juventud Guerrera to its monthly show at the Logan Square Auditorium on March 16. They will have their usual stacked card from top to bottom with Callihan defending his AAW Championship against Jake Something. The Young Bucks made a surprise appearance last month to attack the Lucha Bros., so you never what might at an AAW show.
At POWW Entertainment on March 23 at the Addison Park District, former WCW and WWE cruiserweight legend Chavo Guerrero Jr. will be there for a pre-show meet and greet and will be wrestling later that evening. POWW is also running a show this Saturday (March 2) in Fox Lake where POWW Champion Vic Capri defends against GQ.
Michael Blanton’s Black Label Pro, based out of Northwest Indiana, will be running a wrestling show featuring a tag team tournament on March 9 and then hosting “Something to Wrestling with Bruce Prichard” later that night in Crown Point. Only one ticket is required for both shows.
Freelance Wrestling presents “Thrill Your Idols” at Logan Square Auditorium on March 8. Kylie Rae will be defending her Freelance Championship against Priscilla Kelly. Isaias Velazquez takes on Ethan Page in another featured match.
Berwyn Championship Wrestling tips its cap to Stone Cold Steve Austin with its 3:16 themed show, “I Just Whooped Your Ass” (on March 16, of course). “Shogun” Chris Logan will be defending the BCW Championship and Marshe Rockett will face Egotistico Fantastico. Capri, Craig Mitchell, Steve Michaels, Bryce Benjamin and Acid Jazz are also advertised among others.
Other wrestling shows include Global Pro Wrestling in south suburban Posen and Global Wrestling Stars in Berwyn this Saturday (March 2), Galli Lucha Libre’s Galli Classic in Melrose Park this Sunday (March 3), WrestleLeague’s Anniversary VII show in Chicago on Saturday, March 9, Chicago Style Wrestling’s show at Guerin Prep in River Grove on March 16, Kaiju Attack Wrestling’s return to the Wire in Berwyn on Saturday, March 23, and Lucha Libre Total at the Berwyn Eagles Club on Sunday the 24th.
The fun doesn’t stop with the actual wrestling shows with several special appearances, including two-time WWE Champion AJ Styles doing a meet and greet at World of Wheels at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont on March 8.
The annual C2E2 at McCormick Place also has a star-studded lineup with CM Punk, The Young Bucks, Kenny Omega and Marty Scurll making appearances. Two great wrestling talk shows are advertised during the weekend as well, including a dual show with Eric Bischoff and Tony Schiavone (with Conrad Thompson) on Friday the 22nd and Jim Cornette’s one-man show on Saturday the 23rd.
For a schedule of events, check out Windy City Slam’s calendar of events: https://www.windycityslam.com/calendar-of-events.