Zach leaps to top ... on just one leg
Grappler's already a main-event attraction
TY PILSON -- Calgary Sun
Zach Gowen insists he's not merely the flavour of the week.
But it's easy to look at him -- the first one-legged professional wrestler -- and wonder if Gowen will outlast the gimmick.
The 20-year-old Detroit native, however, has no doubts he's here to stay.
"Once the novelty wears off, I think people will accept me because of my talent," said Gowen, who's expected to perform at tonight's Up Close and Uncensored show at the Saddledome.
"You can't deny talent. Talent will always rise to the top and that's how I feel about that."
Gowan's first WWE match on July 3 was a main event, something unheard of in professional wrestling.
Most grapplers spend years toiling on regional circuits before making The Show. Of course, once there, they have to work their way through the ranks to the upper echelons.
Gowen, who had his leg amputated at the age of eight to stop the spread of cancer, spent only two years wrestling in the minors before being thrust into the WWE spotlight with top billing.
Gowen is currently embroiled in a feud with none other than the top dog, WWE owner Vince McMahon.
"It's very overwhelming but exciting at the same time," said Gowen.
"I'm very lucky. There's so many independent wrestlers out there and quality independent wrestlers who have a shot at being here.
"It's pretty much a one in a million. Things just came together and aligned perfectly for me.
"It's nuts," he added.
"You come into this 20 years old and you're working with the boss. It's been a dream come true."
Gowen admits he was nervous when he came to the WWE, worried about how he'd be treated by the rest of the wrestlers, many of whom had put in significantly more time to get to where he is.
"I was very scared coming in," said Gowen.
"I knew I was going to come in and work with the top dogs, so I was worried about how I would be received by the other guys.
"But everybody has treated me great, everybody has been very nice to me and I certainly appreciate that from each one of the guys in the back."