Tommy Dreamer knows Fort Lauderdale’s War Memorial Auditorium all too well.
Dreamer, an ECW original, will debut for MLW on Thursday, Sept. 6 in the War Games main event at the War Memorial Auditorium.
He said: “Just going there [War Memorial Auditorium] from ECW, when we used to pack the houses, [to MLW War Games], it was like, ‘Wow, perfect place, perfect timing,’ and I’m super excited about it.”
While making his mark in ECW, the company conducted shows periodically at that staple South Florida venue off US1/Federal Highway, including the Hardcore Heaven PPV in 1997 where Dreamer battled WWE’s Jerry The King Lawler to culminate a very hot feud.
Dreamer, 47, said: “I main evented already in that building [on ECW house shows], but [Hardcore Heaven] was the first ever time I main evented a pay-per-view.“
Dreamer’s first foray in an MLW ring will elicit some of those fond memories.
Dreamer said: “I was reached out to by MLW, Court Bauer [the MLW CEO and founder]. He was like, ‘Hey, I got this idea. I wanted to run it by you.’ The moment he said War Games, I was like, ‘I’m in. I don’t even care who the opponents are.’ It’s something I’ve always wanted to do...When he told me where it is, I was like, ‘Man.’”
Click below for my interview with Dreamer as he discusses MLW, War Games, War Memorial Auditorium, Dusty Rhodes, ECW, and Jerry Lawler.
Dreamer joins John Hennigan (Impact Wrestling’s Johnny Impact, Lucha Underground’s Johnny Mundo, WCW’s Johnny Nitro, WWE’s John Morrison) along with Barrington Hughes, Shane Strickland and Kotto Brazil to battle Callihan’s Ravagers (Sami Callihan, Jimmy Havoc, The Death Machines and the monster Abyss) in a special War Games matchup.
War Games pits talent inside two rings, engulfed by a steel cage.
“I’ve watched Shane Strickland grow from a regular indie guy who I didn’t think would make it but had heart and desire and totally turned his stuff around,” said Dreamer, who runs the House of Hardcore shows and wrestles and works behind the scenes for Impact Wrestling. “He’s amazing in the ring.
“John Morrison I’ve wrestled a million times. I have a long history with him. Sami Callihan has really, really blown up and took off. The Monster Abyss, him and I are no strangers, and Jimmy Havoc, another guy, when you talk about the boom in professional wrestling, he made a name for himself being hardcore in the UK.
“Abyss was supposed to be this big monster surprise, but I’m in my element. I’m back with my people, and everybody in that match needs to worry about me, because once that cage locks, I get to become the innovator of violence. It’s the most powerful drug in the world, adrenaline, and I’m going to go crazy. I’m going to go insane.”
Click below for more of my interview with Dreamer as he discusses Sami Callihan, Shane Strickland, MLW, Paul Heyman, Impractical Jokers and more.
There is not only history with the War Memorial Auditorium and Dreamer but also MLW War Games.
Created by the late, great American Dream Dusty Rhodes, War Games in the NWA and WCW were more widely known, but MLW’s version captured some attention worldwide and was very good, too.
MLW’s War Games occurred Sept. 19, 2003 at the War Memorial Auditorium. It featured The Extreme Horsemen of Steve Corino, Simon Diamond, CW Anderson, PJ Walker and Barry Windham versus The Funkin’ Army of Terry Funk, The Sandman, Sabu, Dr. Death Steve Williams and Bill Alfonso.
A few months earlier in 2003, War Memorial Auditorium also hosted MLW’s Hybrid Hell.
Here are a few photos I took from that show.
That event included CW Anderson, Simon Diamond, Christopher Daniels, Jerry Lynn, Norman Smiley, Kenzo Suzuki, Bill Alfonso, Billy Fives, CM Punk, D-Lo Brown, Francine, Homicide, Joel Maximo, Jose Maximo, and Kid Romeo.
Also, Los Maximos, Mana, Michael Shane, Mike Awesome, Mikey Whipwreck, Raven, Sabu, Samu, Satoshi Kojima, Steve Corino, Steve Williams, Terry Funk, The Extreme Horsemen, The Samoan Island Tribe, and The Sinister Minister.
Fifteen years later, MLW is stronger with a TV contract via beIN SPORTS USA.
2018 MLW War Games
Ticket start at just $10. You can purchase tickets now at MLWgo.com.
The super card will also feature a FUSION TV taping for beIN SPORTS USA.
MLW is 8 p.m. ET Fridays on beIN SPORTS USA.
2018 MLW WAR GAMES® Super Card
WAR GAMES MATCH: TOMMY DREAMER, JOHN MORRISON, KOTTO BRAZIL, BARRINGTON HUGHES and SHANE STRICKLANDVS. SAMI CALLIHAN, JIMMY HAVOC, THE DEATH MACHINES and THE MONSTER ABYSS
WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT: LOW KI (c) (presented by SALINA DE LA RENTA) VS. REY FENIX (cornered by KONNAN
MEXICAN MASSACRE MATCH: PENTAGON JR. (cornered by KONNAN) VS. LA PARK (presented by SALINA DE LA RENTA)
FILTHY TOM LAWLOR VS. BAD BOY JOEY JANELA
PCO VS. BRODY KING
DAVEY BOY SMITH JR. (with HART FOUNDATION) VS. ACH
TEDDY HART (with HART FOUNDATION) VS. RICH SWANN
BRIAN PILLMAN JR. (with HART FOUNDATION) VS. VANDAL ORTAGUN
MIXED TAG TEAM MATCH: JOEY RYAN and TAYA VALKYRIE VS. MJF and ARIA BLAKE
MYRON REED VS. JASON CADE (with RHETT GIDDINS)
EL HIJO de LA PARK VS. JIMMY YUTA
Also, SIMON GOTCH, THE DIRTY BLONDES with COLONEL PARKER and more.
For updates and more, click MLW.com.
MLW WAR GAMES® is an all ages event.
The War Memorial Auditorium is at 800 NE 8th Street Fort Lauderdale, 33304.
Parking: The venue has a parking lot. Space is available on a first come, first serve basis. There is a small fee for parking at the venue’s lot.
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