Written by: Connor Lapresi
- Adeline Gray Is a Good Commentator
Everything from staying on top of the action, speaking clearly, to breaking down exchanges in a Tony Romo like style. Adeline caught the attention of many listeners with her comfort and poise behind the mic. Alongside Bader, who pulled back from his usual fast and furious play-by-plays and gave Adeline space to offer interesting insights, tell stories, and share other “fun facts” about individual wrestlers. As the day went on, I felt like I got to know more about the teams and the two got into a nice rhythm. Although she is far from hanging up her wrestling shoes and putting on a headset, it’s an exciting possibility that I hope Flo follows up on.
- There Is A Lot Of Work To Be Done For Women’s Wrestling
When there were breaks in the action, Bader treated viewers to some pre-recorded and live interviews with various Beat The Street leadership. During which, a blitzkrieg of truth bombs were dropped on the world of wrestling. The MOAB for me being…
“When administrators say they support women’s wrestling, we don’t just start handing out high-fives. We really need them to be prepared for the follow up questions regarding how they plan on doing that”
I was fist pumping when I heard this because it’s outrageously true. Simply saying you support women’s wrestling because it’s an inclusive and popular thing to say is a lot like slapping #growrestling on your Twitter bio and calling it a day. Yes it helps, but there is so much more to be done. So let’s put down the gold stars and start expecting more out of our leadership! With new installments of Beat The Streets in Chicago and Boston, I challenge readers to reach out to them and ask how you can help. When in doubt, be of service.
- Girls Wrestle, And They’re Pretty Good At It
It sure was fun to watch the matches with non-wrestling friends. Their shrieks and looks of disbelief at the aggressiveness of these girls were priceless. I kept reminding them, “They 100% would kick your ass.” and was eventually met with reluctant agreement. Something interesting that Adeline mentioned was the added flexibility these athletes had and how it changed certain positions. For example, a common method to getting a push out with a single leg is lifting their heel to the sky and driving them out. Except, Adeline mentioned that this wasn’t a good idea because of the added flexibility everyone possessed. Many times backs twisted and compressed in ways I thought would surely lead to points but ended up being scoreless. It makes me wonder, just how creative can they be with their wrestling because of this?
- Something Special Happened This Weekend
Scrolling through Twitter, I saw more and more accounts of the electric and almost peculiar energy that filled the Marriott ballroom. Everything from Tamyra Mensah Stock loudly cheering during all bouts (#TMS), the viral and very funny photoshoot that occurred the day before, along with the obvious fact that this was truly a groundbreaking all female event. Every so often Adeline Gray would comment on the overwhelming support everyone had for each other the moment they stepped off the mat. It was as if each person there recognized that they were part of something greater, with no one really interested in making it about them. Something I’m skeptical would happen with an all male competition (hot take). While wrestling is known to be an individual sport, it was refreshing to see everyone adopt an abundance mentality and put on a great show.
Matches You Should Watch
50 kg Amy Fearnside VS Alyssa Lampe
Talk about never giving up. With Fearnside down 9-0, on-deck wrestlers started to take off their warmups thinking the match was over. Amy had other ideas and received high praise from Bader and Adeline for her effort.
68 kg Kayla Marano VS Skylar Grote
A fight for all 6 mins, I hope this wasn’t the last time we see this matchup. With hard hand fighting and a lot of movement, Bader and Adeline pointed out how other coaches in attendance were literally taking notes during the match. These two competitors will only get better over time, a win-win for wrestling fans.
57 kg Koral Sugiyama VS Lauren Louive
Remind me to NEVER dig an underhook on Koral Sugiyama. With four (4) arm spins all converting to points, this match is a great example of what happens when you let it fly and fully commit to your throws. Adeline believed having short hair aided the armspins citing that her longer hair usually gets caught (unconfirmed). She was on fire the whole match really, giving us sound bytes like, “Seeing feet fly across the mat is pretty cool.” and “I don’t think I’ve thrown this many armspins in a practice!” or my favorite, “I want to clap.”