It was early last week that the first person contacted me with the thought that Finest City Wrestling’s November 18th show might not be happening. The promoter, Gus Parsons, had posted about his ring being taken and in independent wrestling a lot of people are rightly suspicious anytime they hear of trouble. Still there were five days till the show and I didn’t think a lot of it.
The days went by and more and more people started reaching out, saying they hadn’t heard anything from the promotion. That there was money owed. By Thursday morning it was clear that the show would likely be canceled. It is unfortunate, but FCW has canceled shows in the past.
Then Friday night Gus Parsons announced on Facebook that FCW was done, he was getting out of wrestling. A hole was created in the San Diego wrestling scene.
Looking back at the legacy of FCW, I think as of right now it will go down as the best promotion in San Diego’s history, at least in terms of match quality. FCW brought in talent that was unequaled in the area. Sure, other promotions would book a bigger name or bring in highly touted wrestlers from outside the area for a match or two, but FCW would try to book strong cards from top to bottom.
In talking with Gus I always got the feeling that his goal was to put on the best wrestling show that he could. Maybe that was his downfall? Maybe adding Penta El Zero M and Rey Fenix to a match that already had Rey Mysterio Jr, Jeff Cobb, Bestia 666, etc. didn’t make financial sense, but that was one of the reason Gus was so popular among fans. People knew he was a fan at heart and wanted to have the best matches possible.
I was talking to someone after this past Saturday’s SoCal Pro show about FCW’s demise. They mentioned how they’ll miss FCW because while they enjoy the other local San Diego promotions every FCW show created a memory. Whether it was a crazy four-way match with Eli Everfly and Danny Limelight jumping off basketball hoops, Joey Ryan proposing to Laura James in the ring, Douglas James and B-Boy going 45 minutes in a war, or any of the other great moments in the promotion’s history, he was right. FCW created moments in San Diego’s wrestling history that will be talked about for a long time.
That’s a pretty good legacy for the promotion to have. In a few months most people will have forgotten how the promotion ended, but those great shows will still be thought about. Gus also has to be ranked in the top four San Diego area promoters of the last 25 years. While the ending was bad, ultimately it was a pretty good run.
Sure it’s possible Gus sleeps on it a few nights and decides this isn’t the end, but the FCW we knew is gone. Too many people were burned and the fall was too public. Sure there are wrestlers who would take the booking. There are fans that would take the risk. But there are wrestlers and fans that wouldn’t, changing the promotion at its core.
It is OK though. Most independent wrestling promotions die (aside from EWF, which I’m sure will be still going strong in 2717). When there is a hole something eventually fills it. Lead by B-Boy, things are already in motion to fill the void.
Fifteen years ago this month EPIC collapsed in spectacular fashion. That directly lead to the formation of Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. Who knows what the death of FCW brings. FCW is going to be missed, the future isn’t necessarily dark.
If you live in the San Diego area and had only been to FCW there is still plenty of wrestling worth checking out and all offer something different.
SoCal Pro runs primarily in North County (though they do have a show in Mira Mesa in January) and runs more of a traditional WWE style promotion. They usually bring in a big name or two for their Oceanside.
Baja Stars USA runs in South San Diego and is a traditional lucha libre promotion. Their undercards are usually comprised of SoCal and Baja California based locals and headlined by big names in the lucha libre world.
FIST Combat runs in Kensington and runs an adults only show at a bar. They showcase a mix of styles and sometimes include hardcore matches with barbwire and even fire.
Super Awesome Showdown is an all ages sc-fi fantasy type show that is closer to Kaiju Big Battel than a traditional wrestling show. They normally run near Mission Bay but occasionally have shows at other locations.
There is also Rey Mysterio Jr.’s Lucha Wonderland at Sycuan Casino coming up on December 22nd and there is reportedly a contract in place for more shows by Rey Mysterio at Sycuan next year too.
Be sure to check out our events calendar to keep up to date on upcoming shows throughout San Diego and the rest of Southern California.