Adam Pearce is what you would call an “old-school” pro-wrestler. The former Waukegan native got his start in the wrestling business in November of 1995, training at the Pro Wrestling International School where other notable stars like CM Punk and Colt Cabana also got their start. The rugged, no-nonsense grappler has wrestled for the World Wrestling Federation (now known as the WWE), Ring of Honor (ROH) and on the Mexican Independent circuit. He currently holds the NWA Heavyweight Championship – a belt once held by wrestling legends like Ric Flair and Harley Race – and is currently traveling the world defending it. He returns to Chicago to face Chris Cairo this weekend at POWW Entertainment‘s WRESTLERAGE IX. In advance of his match, Adam and I discussed his career, his favorite match and some wrestling greats:
Geek To Me: What made you decide to get into pro-wrestling?
Adam Pearce: Luck, really. I was a fan of the then-WWF (now WWE) and was exposed to independent cards while in high school in Waukegan. I was able to meet some of the guys and went from there.
G2M: How long have you been in the business?
AP: Just started my seventeenth year.
G2M: Which pro-wrestlers have inspired you the most?
AP: I’ve been more inspired by my peers and the work ethic that they possess more than looking to the idols of my youth. The locker rooms of ROH (Ring of Honor) are filled with stars.
G2M: Any memorable matches?
AP: After seventeen years it’s a wonder I remember anything at all! But to answer the question, August 2008; New York City; sold out Manhattan Center versus Brent Albright for the NWA World Title. I lost, but it was as perfect a night as I’ve had in the ring.
G2M: What does it feel like to be wearing the NWA Championship, one of the most prestigious belts in the business?
AP: It’s still a surreal honor, even as I am in my fourth reign. To have my name attached to the greatest lineage of wrestling champions in the history of the sport is extremely humbling.
G2M: Rick Flair or Hulk Hogan, who’s the greatest?
AP: Wouldn’t even try to decide. Both are legends and both have contributed to the industry immeasurably.
G2M: Stone Cold Steve Austin or CM Punk, who’s the bigger rebel?
AP: Having known CM Punk since his first days in the business, I can comfortably say that if there’s a reason to rebel against something, he’ll most definitely and happily find it.
G2M: What would your ‘dream match’ be?
AP: Don’t really have one, honestly. I’ve done more in wrestling than I ever thought possible, and am very content. This whole journey is a dream come true.
G2M: Okay, I’m calling you out! The Iron Geek against NWA Champ Adam Pearce! You name the kind of match!
AP: The fact that you’d even think to ‘call me out’ tells me you don’t know me very well. Perhaps you should ask around before you trivially toss challenges my way. Here’s a hint: I’m the kind of guy that smiles warmly while verbally dissecting you, simultaneously gutting you and leaving you in a steaming puddle of your own bile and excrement mid-ring. After the referee has seen enough, I then walk away calmly – carrying the famous ‘ten pounds of gold’, of course – intently looking for a bar with a cold beer, followed by a quiet place to kiss your old lady good night. Still set on calling me out?
G2M: Ummmm…no. Forget I said that.
POWW Entertainment’s WRESTLERAGE IX will be taking place Saturday, November 12th at the Odeum Expo Center, 1033 N. Villa Ave., Villa Park IL. Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets.