Axess an exercise in excess
By STEPHEN LAROCHE --
The Junk Yard Dog was in the house but not the wrestling legend who passed
away a few years ago.
As the second session of WWF Fan Axess took place last night, Tracy Murray
and Jerome "Junk Yard
Dog" Williams of the Toronto Raptors kicked off the festivities in the Pizza
Williams, who is a huge wrestling fan, has appeared at many World Wrestling
Federation events in
Toronto over the past year and was acting as the commissioner of the Axess
Despite the relatively unexciting launch, there was something for everyone
last night - long lines for
autographs, expensive merchandise and beer.
There were some very cool exhibtors including Fleer
Trading Cards, Figures Inc. and
Comic Images. Fleer's booth will feature a redemption program for
autographed cards when collectors
open packs at their booth. You can also trying out the WWF Raw Deal
customizable card game at the
Comic Images booth...and believe me, it's fun.
WWF backstage personality Dr. Tom Pritchard, who some fans will remember as
Zip from the
Bodydonnas, took time to give his impression of the event to SLAM!
"I think it's great," he said. "If you're a wrestling fan, this is the place
But what did the fans really want? The chance to meet a WWF superstar. Long
lines for autographs were
commonplace at all three upstairs signing areas along with the Hall of Fame
area. Signees last night
included Sgt. Slaughter, Killer Kowalski, Jim Cornette, Michael Hayes, The
Hardy Boyz, Kane and to my
chagrin after waiting 45 minutes in line, Test. In my opinion, the WWF could have put
there besides the
Pickering native... even Chavo Guerrero!
nWo members Kevin Nash and Scott Hall were also spotted signing at the area
where WWF publications
were being sold. Fans should take note that current wrestling personalities
will not be personalizing
autographs or posing for photos with fans. However, the legends will take
the time to let you take their
picture with them.
One of the biggest things for fans who couldn't attend was seeing the
Score's interview with Ric Flair. I
spotted hosts Martine Gaillard (who visits SLAM! Wrestling on occasion) and
Greg Sansone prior to their
meeting with the "Nature Boy".
Les Thatcher, who is helping develop future WWF talent for the Heartland
Wrestling Association, clearly
appeared to enjoy the event.
"It makes me feel like a kid again," he said. "This is my first time. I'm a
wide-eyed sightseer like everyone
All in all, the second night of Axess was a bit of a disappointment for some
fans, especially some of those
who waited in line to get Test's autograph instead of a bigger star. There's
a lot more going on today,
including appearances by Kane, Edge, Lita and Linda McMahon. Keep in mind
that there is a lot to do but be prepared to stand in line. This is a great opportunity for wrestling
fans to meet their idols, even for
a brief second or two.