Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Bellatrix Vs. SHIMMER Countdown: Interview With Courtney Rush


Winnipeg has a great hockey history as well as wrestling history, as the Winnipeg Jets won three Avco Cups while in the World Hockey Association and has had a loyal following in the 80s and mid 90s before moving to Phoenix. Since 2011, the Atlanta Thrashers moved to Winnipeg to become the NEW Winnipeg Jets. Names like Bobby Hull, Dale Hawerchuk, Thomas Steen, Keith Tkachuk and Teemu Selanne made their names on the hockey scene here as well as Andrew Ladd, Dustin Byfuglien and the current Jets. As wrestling history applies, it is the hometown of WWE legend Chris Jericho as well as the rising star in the indy scene, the one and only Courtney Rush.

Rush is a 6-time champion currently holding the Bellatrix World Championship as well as a few Canadian Wrestling promotions women's titles, Rush has been and always will be one of a kind. Battling with the likes of Allysin Kay, Cheerleader Melissa, Cherry Bomb, Sara Del Rey and Kellie Skater; the Rush Revolution has one stop she hasn't been yet: England, where she will be defending the belt at Epic Studios in Norwich, the home of Bellatrix Female Warriors on October 6.

In her FIRST interview on the Barbwire Blog, Rush will talk about the beginnings of a dynamic career, her early years as PJ Tyler, her upcoming matches in October and many more. She does not hold back and she pulls no punches, Courtney Rush tells the truth. Unapologetic too.

1. What got you involved with pro wrestling?

The death of Eddie Guerrero. Shall I rewind a bit to explain? Oh, all right. I watched wrestling from a very young age. My father and his friends used to watch all the time. Dad is the world's #1 Undertaker fan. My cousins and I used to wrestle each other in the basement and the backyard, using couch cushions in place of steel chairs. There is probably a terrible home video or two still kicking around somewhere. My room was covered in posters and cutouts from WWF and WCW magazines. In high school, my best friend and I got it into our heads that we should go train to be wrestlers, but the only school - and I use that term loosely - we found at the time wanted us to have a match after a single training session. All together now: SKETCHBAG. We decided to graduate high school instead and figure it out after. Which meant forget about it and go to university. I graduated that with a degree in film and theatre, worked on a couple sets, and had a job in a kitchen that I liked but didn't exactly care about. Still watching wrestling all this time. Then Eddie Guerrero died, and I realised that life is too short to live with regrets. So I researched wrestling schools, sent an email to Scott D'Amore regarding his CanAm Wrestling School in Windsor, Ontario, saved up my money and moved away to start my new life.

2. You got your start in 2008 under the name PJ Tyler. What was the inspiration of that character and how did that work out in the ring?

PJ Tyler was meant to be a spoiled rock 'n roll chick, but came off more to me like a groupie! The name was essentially thrown together; I was just starting and had no better names in mind. I am a big fan of Aerosmith so that is the origin of Tyler. I don't know where PJ came from. It never even stood for anything. It was just a name to use until I matured and found myself...and I did when I became Courtney Rush.

3. You made your SHIMMER debut in 2011 after competing on the SPARKLE pre-shows. What is it like to be a part of the most successful women's wrestling promotion in the United States?
Fun fact: Leva Bates and I debuted on SPARKLE together! The amount of talent in the SHIMMER locker room is mind-boggling, and I love being a part of it. Where else can you find such an internationally eclectic group of women all working toward the common goal of making women's wrestling better? God bless Dave Prazak for having the nerves of steel it takes to organize a locker room full of strong-minded females!

4. You also hold the distinction of appearing on most of nCw: Femme Fatales shows. What is it like to wrestle in your home country.
Well.. keep in mind that I am from Manitoba and live in Ontario. While they and Quebec are all technically part of Canada, they are very different worlds! Montreal fans KNOW what they like, and while they might respect my abilities, I am not convinced that I am entirely loved by them! But I have only missed two Femmes Fatales shows and hopefully they will be the only two. Stephane Bruyere runs a great company.

5. You also worked in Japan as well. What is it like to be involved in the best wrestling the country has to offer?

Difficult. It is a very different style in Japan and takes time to get used to their way. I had three matches while I was there, and I was catching on by the end - or at least I think I was! If I was to go back, I think that I would have a better showing.

6. Last year you teamed up with Sara Del Rey to win the SHIMMER Tag Team Championship. What was it like to work with a women's wrestling legend like Sara Del Rey?

The BEST! Until she betrayed me and left me to be devoured by the Canadian Ninjaz. Hmm. Seems this might still be a touchy subject.

7. Earlier this year you defeated the recently retired Allison Danger to become Bellatrix World Champion. How did that feel to become champion of Europe's top women's wrestling promotion?

Are you kidding? To challenge and defeat someone who has become a mentor to me in Allison Danger, to be given the nod for the title shot from her and Bellatrix owner Saraya Knight, to know that, should I win, it would likely mean achieving my dream of traveling to England to defend said title? Meh, it was okay, I guess. KIDDING! That was a huge moment for me and I am not about to let either of them down, nor am I to disappoint myself. I know my capabilities, and I am ready to show England what I can do!

8. In nCw: Femme Fatales, you are currently embroiled in a war with Cheerleader Melissa for a shot at the nCw: Femme Fatales International Championship, held by Mercedes Martinez. Do you believe you can be on top in this war?

Put it this way: if I didn't believe I could do it, I would give up now. Since you don't see me tapping - and I wouldn't recommend holding your breath for THAT outcome - don't count me out on this one. I will fight Melissa as hard and long as it takes to get that title shot. Believe it.

9. What is your opinion on women's wrestling?

Same as my opinion on all wrestling. Some of it is great. Some of it is okay. Some of it downright stinks. As they say at "Great wrestling knows no gender." That includes bad wrestling too. It is time we start crediting abilities over what lies between the competitors' legs.

10. On October 6, you'll be defending the Bellatrix World Title against Liberty, who has been on a roll since winning the Real Quality Wrestling European Ladies Championship. What do you think about that match?

I think Liberty needs to put more of her matches on YouTube! How am I supposed to do my homework on the girl with practically no reference material? At least you will find MY YouTube channel vastly more generous with footage of me!

11. With Open Female Fight Season coming, is October gonna be great for women's wrestling in general?

So long as everyone brings their A-Game. We must always strive to improve. Each outing must be even better than the last. And there are certainly many opportunities this time round!

12. Let's go around with name association. I say a name, you can respond to whatever you please. Allison Danger?


13. Saraya Knight?


14. Nicole Matthews?


15. Cherry Bomb?

Arch Nemesis

16. Cheerleader Melissa?

Watch that Kudoh Driver!

17. Mercedes Martinez?

Can never retire. Ever!!

18. Christina Von Eerie?

Should team with Jessie McKay. Aussie Aussie Aussie! Oi Oi Oi!

19. LuFisto?


20. Ayako Hamada?


21. Madison Eagles?

I want to wrestle her every day.

22. Jodi DiMilo?

Partner! Moonwalk Thrillers are taking it all!

23. What does the future hold for you?

The last fortune cookie I read said something about a penguin of happiness. Admittedly, I was confused. But the near future involves a trip to England to defend my Bellatrix title and a rematch vs Cheerleader Melissa for the Femmes Fatales #1 contendership! Beyond that, gimme more wrestling! I love what I do.

24. In closing, would you like to leave a last message for your fans as well as Liberty?

I never back down from a challenge. Come at me, Liberty - and bring everything you've got.

Special thanks to Courtney Rush for her time, effort, and cooperation for this interview; as well as Saraya Knight for helping me out in the process. To keep up with “The Winnipeg Suplex Machine," follow her on Twitter @WinnipeggerRush.

You can follow me on Twitter @matthewhollie

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