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Prince George grappler hopes to be the next wrestling star

John Gillespie

True sportsmen recognize that there is a major difference between the wrestling contested at the Olympics and that which is featured weekly on television. Still, one standout amateur wrestling champion hopes to make a successful transition to the pro circuit when professional wrestling returns to Prince George on February 16-17 at the Civic Centre.

At 282 pounds, John Gillespie has the brawn to make a go of it in the pros. Local sports enthusiasts may recognize his name – a former provincial champion on the amateur mats who competed nationally, placing sixth in the country. On the football field, he holds a local record for most sacks in a single game in flag football.

Gillespie isn’t the first to make the jump from one wrestling discipline to another. Among the most celebrated ring stars to do so include Kurt Angle, The Iron Sheik and Brock Lesnar. He is looking forward to testing his skills against a deep roster of seasoned veterans from across Canada when he makes his debut in a few short weeks.

“Unlike the football field, or on a wrestling team, pro wrestling is a very solo endeavour, and the competition is fierce to create opportunities to ascend to the main events,” said Gillespie. “And I know there are going to be guys in there that want to show the ‘amateur champion’ how tough professional wrestling is. I’m ready for the challenge.”

Also announced for the upcoming dates is the return of professional wrestling’s “mighty midgets” for the first time in more than 40 years. Plus, The Mauler, “Prospector” Wes Barker, and many more.

Advance tickets are available at Scrapbook Zone. More information about the event and the wrestlers scheduled to appear can be found online at Primetimes Facebook and Instagram pages.

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