LANHAM – Pro wrestling has seen many great talents over the years, such as Hulk Hogan and John Cena. However, there are talents who get lost in the “land of the giants.” Those smaller talents are usually the ones that leave fans in awe and draw them in, although they may never reach big-time status […]
LANHAM – Pro wrestling has seen many great talents over the years, such as Hulk Hogan and John Cena.
However, there are talents who get lost in the “land of the giants.”
Those smaller talents are usually the ones that leave fans in awe and draw them in, although they may never reach big-time status due to their smaller statures. Wrestlers like Rey Mysterio, Jeff Hardy, and now World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE) Kalisto, Neville, and AJ Styles have all become fan favorites because of their high-flying daredevil style of pro wrestling.
Lanham’s own Lio Rush is now moving up the professional wresting ranks despite his size.
Standing just 5-6 and weighing 160 pounds, Rush isn’t an imposing figure in the ring, but his agility and speed make him a very exciting in-ring performer.
Rush is a graduate of the Maryland Championship Wrestling (MCW) Training Center and feels training at the center is the main reason he is where he is at today.
“The experience at MCW is like no other. I feel like there are a lot of bad training schools out there, and a lot of bad independent promotions that give the independent circuit a bad name,” Rush told PWInsider in a 2015 interview. “Maryland Championship Wrestling prepares you like none other. Their coaching staff cares about the future of their product and they take their time with every student to help mold them into the superstar they are trying to become.
“Whether it’s promos to in-ring work, or learning about the wrestling business, the coaches and staff are always there to help you. MCW is truly a family and they produce the next top independent superstars.”
Rush was half of the former tag-team champions Sudden Impact, alongside recent WWE signing and Forestville native, Patrick Clark. Rush and Clark were the first two graduates of MCW’s training center and have now moved on to bigger endeavors, with Rush becoming a member of the Ring of Honor Wrestling roster.
“Patrick is like a brother to me,” Rush said in the PWInsider interview. “We met several months prior to signing at the MCW training center. We actually grew up and wrestled in the same area throughout high school, in the same county, but we had no clue of each other.
“We made a promise to ourselves that we were going to sign up together, go on this long journey together, and change professional wrestling together. Working side by side with him is more than I could ever ask for. To have someone beside me with as much love and passion for this business as I do is awesome. We are 19 and 20-years-old, we’re passionate, and we’re men of our words. The sky is the limit for us.”
Rush was an All-American amateur wrestler who ranked at the national level before he began his professional wrestling career. Just eight months into his career, he won the 2015 Shane Shamrock Memorial Cup defeating five other competitors.
“Being 20-years-old and winning the Shamrock Cup is an absolute honor. But for me to have only been doing this for eight months and succeeding all the way to the top of the Shamrock mountain is unbelievable, and I’m humbled and honored. Just one year ago I was sitting ringside doing security for Shamrock Cup 2014 dreaming of one day competing in that tournament. Now I am the 2015 Shamrock Cup winner,” Rush said.
After traveling the world for his first year as a professional, Ring of Honor Wrestling gave Rush a chance.
Rush was discovered at a Ring of Honor training camp where he impressed officials enough to earn an opportunity to compete in the ring. In December of 2015, he made his Ring of Honor debut in a Future of Honor contest against Vinny Marseglia. Rush won with his “Rush Hour” finishing move and pinned Marseglia. With that, he drew rare adulation from the Philadelphia crowd.
After winning his opening match, Rush is now set to compete in the tournament’s second round in hopes of moving a step closer to a Ring of Honor contract.
“Despite his small stature, Rush’s early success has already drawn comparisons to high-flying dragon slayers like Rey Mysterio Jr., but Rush with his All-American amateur background has the tools to make his own mark with his unique blend of aerial attacks and mat maneuvers. Rush is equipped with the skills to go all the way, win the 2016 Top Prospect Tournament, and earn a ROH contract!,” Ring of Honor said in its promotion of Rush.
Ring of Honor has produced a tremendous amount of talented professional wrestlers over the last 14 years. Many, such as Sami Zayn, Luke Harper, Cesaro, Seth Rollins, Daniel Bryan and CM Punk, have reached superstar status in the business.
Could Lio Rush be next?