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Families make up big part of Toronto WWE audience
By BOB KAPUR - SLAM! Wrestling


TORONTO - The holiday season is here, and for many, it’s seen as a wonderful opportunity to spend some quality time with family. Watching a wrestling show seems to be part of that quality time, judging from the number of families in attendance at last night’s WWE Supershow at Toronto’s Air Canada Centre.

Much moreso than at recent WWE events, the packed house seemed to be full of kids, possibly reflecting the WWE’s recent move to a more PG-rated product. To a large extent, they were there with their parents, the tickets no doubt an early Christmas present.

Such was the case for Lindsay and Chelsea Ronson of Newmarket who received a pair of tickets from their aunt and uncle. The sisters were thrilled that their request for floor seats had been fulfilled, they told SLAM! Wrestling.

"We love it!" enthused Chelsea, who, sporting a new John Cena shirt and hat, made no secret about her favourite WWE superstar. "We always try to go when (WWE) is in town. I wish they were here more (often)." Lindsay was equally enthusiastic about the event, punctuating her sister’s comment with a raucous "We love WWE! I love you, John Cena!"

As excited as they were for Cena, so too was Jasmeena Singh for the surprise appearance of Trish Stratus, who made her one-time in-ring return for the company in the main event of RAW, which aired almost-live in Canada on The Score. Singh, like many of the fans in attendance, screeched in excitement when Stratus’ music hit.

"She’s still got it," said Singh about Stratus, who she named her favourite female wrestler of all time. "I really like Mickie James, but Trish... wow. She’s so good, and so pretty, and she’s still got it, what can I say?" The rest of the fans in attendance overwhelmingly agreed, and Stratus probably got the biggest cheer of the night, rivaled only by that of Jeff Hardy.

Tyler Davis from Oakville was one of the most visible Hardy supporters, wearing fluorescent makeup similar to that of the current WWE champion. "Hardy rocks!" screamed Davis during Hardy’s match against the fearsome Big Show, risking worsening a throat already somewhat hoarse because of a cold. After the match, that Hardy won by count-out, the teen explained his support for Hardy. "It’s, like, he’s not perfect, you know?" said Davis, alluding to Hardy’s past real-life problems with substance abuse that has resulted in two violations of the company’s Wellness Policy. "He shows that even if you’re a (screw)-up at some things, you can still be awesome at something else."

Where WWE has always been awesome is in working with organizations such as the Children’s Wish Foundation, offering children with serious illness the chance to live out a dream, through meet and greets with the superstars, or tickets to the show. Andrew Peters is one such child, and the company, as always, went the extra mile to make sure his Christmas was a great one. Andrew and his family were flown in from Nova Scotia to attend the show. Longtime WWE fans, this marked the first time the Peters family had ever seen a live event, and they were very excited.

"(My wife and I) follow it on TV," said Grant, Andrew’s father, "but not as much as he does. He’s been a fan all his life. Today was a very special day, because earlier, he got to meet Rey Misterio," which was another part of Andrew’s wish. "It’s been a lot of fun," said Andrew, beaming.

Based on the enthusiastic response of the fans in attendance, truer words were never spoken.

Bob Kapur wishes all SLAM! Wrestling readers the best of the holiday season, and a very happy new year.