LA MARQUE – Local professional wrestling fans will be in a state of bliss this weekend, as the Coastal Wrestling Federation will hold its “Battle Zone 2014” event Saturday night, whetting the in-person appetite leading into World Wrestling Entertainment’s WrestleMania 30 pay-per-view on Sunday evening.
CWF owner Derek King’s showcase Saturday will feature a 30-man over-the-top battle royal that will include CWF stars Nate Laws, Slam Shady and Mike Dell, the debuts of “Nature Boy” Paul Lee and the Sons of Samoa along with a match that will pit former World Championship Wrestling star Buff Bagwell against David Stahr.
“This is one of our best cards,” said King, who has run the company since 2006. “We’re excited about not only the star power, but also the growth of our performers.”
Saturday’s event at the National Guard Armory off Gulf Freeway will be an opportunity for fans to donate to the Houston Police Department’s bicycle relay team’s fight against leukemia. And for each ticket sold, CWF will donate $2 toward supporting the HPD’s annual ride.
The main event will be a belt-versus-belt match between CWF champion Lance Beretta against the National Wrestling Alliance titleholder, Tokyomonster Kahagas.
Tickets for the event are on sale at Partners Sales and Leasing in La Marque.
While Saturday’s event won’t register nationally in comparison to WrestleMania, it does show how the CWF has progressed during the eight years of King’s ownership.
The organization has increased attendance and has gained a foothold upon local wrestling fans. One of the keys to that success has been the ability to draw popular names like Bagwell, who gained worldwide acclaim during the 1990s wrestling boom as part of the legendary New World Order.
“Guys like Bagwell enhance the card because they are wrestlers that a lot of our fans grew up watching,” King said. “He still has name value, and can still perform in the ring.”
The Sons of Samoa are from one of wrestling’s most dominant families; Afa, Jr. and LA Smooth are the latest stars from a family tree that also includes WWE icon and current action movie superstar Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Both also had stints in WWE as well.
CWF has big plans in the future, as it is in the process of expanding its roster along with the possibility of a weekly television show on a Houston access channel. The goal of adding bigger stars will be realized in July, when the company puts on its biggest event, Coastalmania VI, in which WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley, former Impact Wrestling champion A.J. Styles, and Kevin Von Erich and his sons are confirmed to participate in the July 6 event at the Galveston Convention Center.
“We’re getting bigger and better with each event,” King said. “I love being able to provide wrestling to my hometown area, and it’s a great joy to see how much support we’re getting from the community.”