Wrestledelphia almost shut down.
Posts have slowed to a halt, social media followers have stagnated and morale has dampened. We went from a vibrant summer of buzzworthy interviews and viral maps to wintry doldrums of sporadic listicles. The Founding Father believed that we “hit our peak.”
I was inclined to agree with him until last week when our loyal readers gave us the hot tag.
Wrestledelphia ranked 19th out of 83 wrestling sites on the RSPW “Best of Media” awards. For a two-and-a-half-year-old site run by Philly mooks to crack the top 20 is an amazing feat. We were ten votes away from The Ross Report and only a few votes shy of my favorite podcast, Something to Wrestle With, hosted by Bruce Prichard and my friend Conrad Thompson. On the other hand, we beat Sam Roberts’ Wrestling Podcast, PWI, Pro Wrestling Torch and The Taz Show, among other notable outlets.
It’s easy to lose your passion when your hard work goes unnoticed. After all, this website is merely a hobby treated like a full-time job. We’re not being rewarded with a weekly paycheck, and we’re rarely commended for breaking news or covering untold stories. Sometimes we wonder if anybody even reads our pieces.
Well, at least 65 people do. And that’s reignited my passion.
We gathered at The Grey Lodge Pub last Friday to remember why we do this. It’s not for money. It’s not to replace Dave Meltzer.
It’s just for fun.
We write for Wrestledelphia because we enjoy watching pro wrestling, talking about it with each other, debating how hot Alexa Bliss is and then writing about it. We started as strangers in journalism classes and became pro wrestling journalists, and furthermore, good friends. We’ve even expanded our crew to include other strangers with the same addiction to suplexes and shoots.
Wrestledelphia has allowed me to interview many of my childhood heroes, attend shows for free and get early access to books and DVDs. It’s been a springboard to a weekly radio show and now a commentary gig with CZW. Most importantly, it’s provided me therapy – a chance to lie down on the couch and vent about all the issues plaguing me inside and outside the ring. I have the freedom to mourn Ric Flair’s record or attack Jimmy Snuka supporters or congratulate Goldberg on a triumphant return.
Wrestledelphia means a lot to me and the fact that people care enough to support it is validation. Our hard work hasn’t gone unnoticed. Our social media followers are more than stats. They’re fans of our product and they want more. So we’re going to give it to them.
In an effort to inspire more contributions, our writers will be covering beats of their choice. As my favorite writer David Gibb suggested, this will cast a wider net in terms of organic traffic and would prevent us from publishing repetitive content that’s only focused on the top angles. It will also prevent us from being burnt out on keeping tabs on the flurry of wrasslin’ content available each week.
We also have a pre-WrestleMania podcast special planned, as well as a post-WrestleMania edition. We’ll have interviews with some noisemakers in the coming months and definitely more live event coverage.
We’re rejuvenated, re-energized and re-committed. We’re going back to our roots of giving the alternative take on the squared circle. We’ll tackle controversial topics and deliver in-depth analysis of industry trends.
We’ll keep the conversation going and we implore you to join in. If you think Cena deserves 16 titles or that Bliss is generic, I’ll scold you and piss on your lawn. But by God, I’ll still welcome your misguided beliefs because democracy dies in darkness and Mark Whited ain’t ready to turn the lights off yet.