On this week’s Indy Spotlight, we highlight Stephen Wolf!
Whether attending a professional wrestling show or watching on television, many wrestling fans focus on any number of characteristics, including a wrestler’s overall look and athleticism, their ability to engage a crowd, and their ability to create “wow” moments. For others, it’s also important to sense that wrestlers love what they are doing. We get the sense that the “Leader of the Pack,” Stephen Wolf, not only enjoys every moment being in the ring, but loves making sure fans have a great experience as well. His matches blend technical wrestling with high-risk, high-flying offense, often creating the need for at least several double takes. Of course, we can’t forget the distinctive howl!
Wolf’s talent has been on display in various promotions, including (but not limited to) EVOLVE, Glory Pro Wrestling, and AAW Pro Wrestling. It was also on display for WWE Network subscribers at EVOLVE 131, where Wolf was victorious in a fantastic fatal four-way match. We feel that Wolf’s career will include many more appearances on major shows. Also, we don’t doubt that he will continue to draw fans for his thoughtful takes on the value of good mental health and the social justice concerns facing our country today.
Recently, we reached out to Wolf to gain some insight into his passion for pro wrestling, his thoughts on competing on the WWE Network, and his strategies for managing the difficult circumstances the world is facing today, among other topics.
It is always fun for us to hear about the extent to which professional wrestlers were avid wrestling fans before joining the business themselves. How diehard of a wrestling fan were you before you stepped into the ring? For example, did you own action figures, games, etc? Was there a pay per view or other show that you watched over and over again?
SW: My earliest memory of wrestling is watching Raw with my grandma when I was just 5 or 6 years old. I’ve had so many action figures and I’ve owned basically every game there’s been since PS2 haha. I don’t think I missed a show or a pay-per-view. A match that I’ve watched over and over again until this day is Shelton Benjamin vs Shawn Michaels from Raw 2005. Everything about that match is absolutely beautiful.
Some wrestling fans got to see you in action for the first time at EVOLVE’s 10th Anniversary Celebration (Evolve 131), which was broadcast on the WWE Network. How much pressure, if any, do you recall feeling before your fatal four-way match that night? In general, are there any specific rituals you go through before heading to the ring?
SW: I was extremely nervous I can’t even lie to you. However, when the Network played and we opened the show I felt so ready. As for the match, I was very nervous until I hit my dive and landed. After that I was able to relax and enjoy the match. Before every match I spend some time in prayer. Talking to God helps keep me centered before going in front of all the fans.
The independent wrestling scene in Illinois, Missouri, and nearby areas in the “Heartland” seems rich with a wide variety of promotions. Of course, many wrestlers who have appeared on the biggest stages come from this region. How has competing in this independent scene helped to shape you as a professional wrestler?
SW: The Midwest has been seriously so kind to me. I’ve been able to meet some of the greatest to come through the Midwest and some of its hidden gems along the way. I really don’t believe I’d be where I am if I came up any other way.
If you could customize your dream entrance at WrestleMania or any other pro wrestling show that typically draws a huge crowd, what would you have happen in that entrance?
SW: I would have all the lights off, then have some thick, low-level fog and the old school Randy Orton where he had the fireworks that rained down as I howl. That’s the dream entrance right there!
Finally, with the ongoing pandemic, issues of race and racism, and police brutality at the center of most conversations in our country these days, it is understandable that many people are feeling sadness and anger, among other emotions. What self care are you doing to maintain at least some sanity in these difficult times? Are there any fun hobbies keeping your spirits up?
SW: I’ve been journaling a lot. Having all this time off of wrestling has been very taxing mentally, but being able to write my thoughts down is such a life saver. Plus, playing plenty of video games haha. I’m big into Apex Legends right now. That’s such a great way to keep my mind off things.
**Be sure to follow and support Stephen Wolf on the following platforms:
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/StephenWolf309
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/StephenWolf309/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StephenWolf309/
- Pro Wrestling Tees: https://www.prowrestlingtees.com/wrestler-t-shirts/stephenwolf309.html