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The pen is mighty for Tommy Dreamer
By EDDIE CHAU - Simcoe Reformer


Tommy Dreamer in June 2012. Photo by Christine Coons

SIMCOE - Tommy Dreamer has a lot of nicknames in pro wrestling.

Innovator of Violence. The Heart and Soul of ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling).

Would one think of adding newspaper columnist to that list?

"I was at a show with (Kingston Whig-Standard news editor Jan Murphy) and we had a long car ride together," Dreamer said. "We were waiting waiting for (wrestler) Billy Gunn to arrive at the airport and we got to talking. He said I told a great story and asked whether I wanted to write a weekly column. I've been doing it since."

The former ECW champion is a regular columnist for the Whig-Standard since 2012 and has penned his thoughts on a number of topics, including baseball, travel, hockey, life, and of course, pro wrestling.

"I enjoy doing it. That's the good thing about being a B-level celebrity that has something to say," joked Dreamer. "I have an adventurous life and if something's on my mind I will write about it."

Longtime wrestling fans will know Dreamer from his career in ECW, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) and Total Nonstop Action (TNA). While you may see Dreamer's face pop up on television from time to time (most recently he served as a groomsmen for Bully Ray's wedding on an episode of TNA Impact Wrestling), the New York native is content with setting his own schedule on the independent wrestling scene.

"I still love wrestling and there's such a strong fan base at each show," Dreamer said. "I wrestled last Saturday in San Antonio and I'm going to Winnipeg on Saturday and Brooklyn the next day. I keep busy. Not bad for being semi-retired."

Dreamer will be appearing at the Northern Wrestling Xperience (NWX) Resurr-X-Tion New Blood show in Simcoe, Ontario, on Feb. 24, joining a number of familiar faces including Jaime D, Melissa Coates and legend Nikolai Volkoff, who will be facing Shooter Shawn Brown for the NWX North American championship.

While Dreamer has wrestled in many towns across Canada, this will be the first time he will perform in Simcoe.

Dreamer is excited to come to Simcoe and wrestle while also meeting the town's loyal fans.

"I always enjoy meet and greets. People will tell you how much you've influenced their lives," Dreamer said. "It's that kind of experience that makes things rewarding for me. I can't wait to come to Simcoe."


Melissa Coates in September 2010. Photo by Larry Minervini
PASSION FOR WRESTLING BEGAN AS A CHILD FOR COATES

Taking headlocks, body slams and lariats in the ring is a passion for Melissa Coates.

The Thunder Bay-based pro wrestler, bodybuilder and fitness model's love for wrestling began as a youngster when she watched Hulk Hogan in action on World Wrestling Federation programming.

"You see these big guys but they were so athletic in the ring," Coates said. "I loved watching Hulk. I was also a fan of Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. I loved it."

While Coates began her career in bodybuilding and later fitness modeling, her love of pro-wrestling brought her to famed wrestler Killer Kowalski's school and later Ultimate Pro Wrestling University for formal training of the craft.

DETAILS
What: NWX Resurr-X-Tion New Blood
When: Sunday, Feb. 24 at 2 p.m.
Where: Simcoe Legion, 200 West St.
Tickets: $10 for adults and $8 for children and seniors in advance at Max Convenience and Kelly's of Simcoe; or $15 for adults and $10 for children and seniors at the door.
Coates has wrestled for various organizations throughout the years and said the transition from bodybuilding and fitness modeling to wrestling was fluid.

"There's a great deal of expressionism and entertainment in everything I do," she said. "All that translates well into wrestling. Wrestling is fun because its very athletic and competitive."

Coates will be facing Jaime D on the Simcoe card, a match she is looking forward to.

"Jaime D is much bigger than me. I'll be throwing a lot of kicks and drop kicks. Totally changing my style," Coates said. "I will be having a different style of match."