#WrestleManiaWeek Preview – A Matter of Pride: DivaMania (4/4/19)

A Matter of Pride is a New York-based indie promotion that focuses on LGBTQ+ wrestlers (and allies). Formed in 2016 in association with New York Wrestling Connection (NYWC), they’ve become a fun party vibe atmosphere with some great wrestling, as the LGBTQ community has emerged as a confident and proud part of pro wrestling after decades of having to remain in silence or the shadows. They’re holding their first WrestleMania week event this year on Thursday April 4 at Lucky Cheng’s nightclub in New York City at 7pm. The main event will see the official crowning of the inaugural Championship for Matter of Pride.

The Wedding of Ricky Cataldo Jr. & Vinny Pacifico, Officiated by Terri Runnels

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

To kick things off, we have a wrestling wedding! And we all know that nothing ever goes wrong at wrestling weddings right? The opening of the event will feature the wedding ceremony between two US indie stars in Ricky Cataldo Jr. of the Fella Twins and Vinny Pacifico, who has been an emerging star who has been working dark matches for Ring of Honor of late. The entire ceremony is being officiated by former WWE Superstar Terri Runnels.

Corrine Mink vs. DJ Summers

Photo: Matter of Pride/NYWC

Corrine Mink is an emerging star from the New Jersey area, who has wrestled for WrestlePro and is the reigning United Pro Wrestling Association (UPWA) Women’s Champion, a title she’s held over 300 days. She’s facing DJ Summers, an up-and-coming wrestler who’s worked for Just Pro Wrestling (JPW) and Wrestle League in Chicago, as well as being a regular with A Matter of Pride.

Big Gay Street Fight: EFFY vs. Billy Dixon

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

Only 23 years old, Billy Dixon has been a rising star on the US indies and on Thursday he’ll be entering a “Big Gay Street Fight” against one of the most notorious trouble makers in the US indies in EFFY. EFFY is a 5-year pro that gained notoriety last year when he lost his title to Bayley superfan Izzy but has also honed his craft with the likes of FEST Wrestling, Freelance Wrestling, Full Impact Pro, Southern Underground Pro and Premiere Wrestling Xperience (PWX).

AC Mack vs. Jake Atlas

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

A clash of two rising stars in the US indies, AC Mack is one of the hot young grapplers out of the rising Southern scene. He’s a regular with Peachstate Wrestling Alliance and Anarchy Wrestling, but it’s in ACTION Wrestling where he’s reached his greatest success as the inaugural ACTION Champion. Jake Atlas is hitting the East Coast with a vengeance, as one of the West Coast’s top stars right now. A WWE tryout last year, he’s been a rising star with Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG), Bar Wrestling, and PCW ULTRA, where he’s the reigning PCW ULTRA ULTRALight Weight Champion.

Eddie Queen vs. Cassius

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

While his Fella Twins tag partner Ricky Cataldo Jr. will be celebrating his wedding from earlier in the evening, Eddy McQueen is looking to take on a veteran of the UK scene in Cassius “The Neon Explosion”, a 4x Lucha Brittania World Champion.

Maria Manic vs. Ashley Vox

Photo: Matter of Pride

Two polar opposites collide, as one of the most savage wrestlers on the planet, “The Maneater” Maria Manic laces up against one the sweetest people in the world in Team Sea Stars‘ own Ashley Vox. Manic is a deathmatch and intergender specialist who thrives on dishing out violence, but despite her cheery demeanor, Ashley Vox can put up a strong fight of her own.

Nyla Rose vs. Marriah Moreno

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

A match featuring two huge trailblazers in the trans community. Nyla Rose broke ground earlier this year as the first transgender wrestler to be signed to a major wrestling contract when she signed with All Elite Wrestling (AEW). But the joshi star is facing someone who paved the way for such a dream to be realized in Marriah Moreno. As Ashley “The Blood Thirsty Vixen”, Moreno was the first transgender wrestler in pro wrestling, when she made her debut in 2011. Moreno also won a title, winning the WILD Women’s Championship from Lucky O’Shea in 2011, in the now defunct World Independent Ladies Division (WILD) Wrestling promotion in California.

Sonny Kiss vs. Melina

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

Speaking of AEW, another recent AEW signee is indie star Sonny Kiss. Sonny Kiss has been trailblazing on his own for years since he debuted in 2015. The flamboyant one has been a regular with New York’s Warriors of Wrestling (WOW) since his debut and is the reigning WOW Heavyweight Champion. Aside from working the likes of Beyond Wrestling, New York Wrestling Connection (NYWC), Freelance Wrestling and more, Kiss joined Lucha Underground for Season Four as XO Lishus. Sonny Kiss is facing a women’s wrestling legend in former 5x WWE Women’s Champion Melina Perez (3x WWE Women’s Champion and 2x WWE Divas Champion).

Chris Kanyon Memorial Battle Royal for Matter of Pride Championship

Photo: LGBTQ Wrestling

The main event will be the Chris Kanyon Memorial Battle Royal, named after the former WCW and WWE Superstar who was one of the earliest openly gay wrestlers in the industry. Sadly, Kanyon committed suicide in 2010 (three years after his retirement in 2007) and never got to see the advancement of the LGBTQ community in pro wrestling that we have in 2019. To celebrate his life, A Matter of Pride is having a battle royal in his honor, that will feature all the winners from the night’s matches. The winning wrestler will be crowned the first-ever champion of A Matter of Pride.

CHECK OUT ALL OUR OTHER WRESTLEMANIA WEEK PREVIEWS HERE (and keep checking back as more are added)

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