Pro wrestling legend Konnan of LAX bowled a 131 to win the Wrestlers' Division of the inaugural Impact Wrestling Bowling Tournament last month at the new Andretti Indoor Karting & Games on Universal Boulevard, near Universal Studios Florida in Orlando.
The fun event with fans was part of the Impact Wrestling VIP Package in conjunction with the Impact Wrestling Redemption PPV and Pop TV tapings at Universal.
Impact's next set of Pop TV tapings is June 1 and 2 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada.
Konnan, the leader of LAX, grew up in Miami, and he bowled with fans from the 305.
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Fun is the objective but winning over your peers is an added bonus.
Ross Forman, the media specialist for Impact Wrestling, conducted an impromptu interview with the winner, who predicted victory weeks prior.
Konnan, who also works with AAA in Mexico, proved why he guides LAX, beating younger LAX talents Santana and Ortiz as well as Aerostar, Drago, Lucha Royalty Taya Valkyrie, and Impact Wrestling Champ Pentagon Jr. (aka Lucha Underground Champ Pentagon Dark).
"I haven't bowled in 15 years, and I still have stitches in my hip," said Konnan, who recently had hip surgery. "What did this big mouth [Santana] have? What did Pentagon have? That's all I got to say."
The trash talking of younger talent Pentagon Jr. and Santana inspired Konnan in game two as he bowled the top score of all wrestlers for either game. Santana, the leader after game one, bowled 91 and 107. Pentagon Jr.'s high score 95.
The Impact Wrestling VIP Package allows fans to have one-of-a-kind experiences with wrestlers. Mini-golf, Q&A sessions, meet-n-greets, special show seating and bowling were part of April's VIP Package.
"I think it's a huge part of what we do as public figures and as performers and as characters," said Impact Wrestling's Lucha Royalty Taya Valkyrie, who bowled two strikes.
"To have that sort of relationship with our fans is really important. Really, because these are the people who support us. These are the people who come to our events. These are the people who watch our show, supporting wrestling in general. So for me it's very important."
Fans from Australia, Canada and the United States took advantage. They traveled from cities near and far, i.e. Apopka, Brisbane, Cape Coral, Clermont, Lakeland, Los Angeles, Miami, Ottawa, Tampa, Toronto, Palm Bay, Philadelphia, West Palm Beach, Windermere, and Winter Garden and cities in Georgia, Illinois and Texas.
"It's been phenomenal, worth the 48-hour plane ride," said Shane Plum from Brisbane, Australia. "I'd do it everyday to do this stuff [with the wrestlers]. It's the best time ever...The experiences I've had you can't buy."
Well, Plum and others did, but I know what he means.
Santana of LAX said: "It's pretty amazing what Impact Wrestling does as far as the fan interaction stuff. The fans being able to get up-close and personal with a lot of the wrestlers and do stuff like this [bowling], I think this is pretty amazing. There's not another place that does things like this. So it's definitely pretty cool."
Action, interviews during the Impact Wrestling Bowling Tournament
Click the links below
Impact Wrestling Mini-Golf
The day prior, Dezmond Xavier won the Wrestlers' Division of the second annual Impact Wrestling Mini-Golf Challenge at Pirate's Cove in Orlando. Carol Bryan of Clermont won the Fans' Division by sinking a hole-in-one on the playoff hole. Xavier did the same, putting a hole-in-one to clinch the victory among wrestlers, including dethroning Eli Drake of the title.
Xavier said: "It was a rather eventful day. The skies were a beautiful blue. The AstroTurf on the mini-golf courses were very vibrant green, and on that day, Dezmond Xavier bested Eli Drake in mini-golf to become the new reigning and defending Impact Mini-Golf Champion."
Even though, Drake lost his title, he had fun. too, and that made it fun for fans --the ultimate goal.
"Once you are there. The experience. It's so much fan," said Amber Shea, 14, also of Clermont. "Some of the [wrestlers] who are [heels] on Impact are actually really fun, especially Eli [Drake]. I got a chance to golf with Eli, and that was incredible. He was hilarious."
Impact Wrestling VIPs in June
Impact Wrestling is offering another VIP Package for fans on June 1 and 2 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada as part of its next set of Pop TV tapings.
For more info, click these links:
Impact Wrestling is 8 p.m. ET Thursdays on Pop TV.
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