On the July 23rd edition of AEW Dynamite, one man came to answer the open challenge issued by Cody for the TNT Championship. After 18 years of competing all over the world, one man answered the challenge. He issued a challenge at the recent No Holds Barred show, and last night, Eddie Kingston arrived. We look back at the journey of a King and appearance of Eddie Kingston. Kingston’s career first began in 2002 under the training of the CHIKARA Wrestle Factory. This is Eddie Kingston The Journey of The Mad King.
Among those that trained Kingston included Chris Hero.
“Who has transcended CHIKARA? Eddie Kingston. Larry Sweeney. Two guys with strong personalities…” – Chris Hero (h/t Cageside Seats).
Chris Hero could see that Kingston went beyond what the promotion was or did. He rose above that along because of personality alone. It is rare for talent to do that, but so is the case for the Mad King. Over the better part of 14 years, Kingston called CHIKARA his home. However, for Kingston, home is the road, and it is what he made it. Other promotions such as IWA-Mid South and Pro Wrestling Guerilla were also synonymous with ‘home’ for Eddie Kingston. Yet it is part of his time with other companies such as Ring of Honor, and the NWA where fans had likely seen him on screen. Kingston, alongside the likes of Homicide, are among the most violent duos in wrestling today. Outlawz Inc has blazed trail fans have soon not forgotten.
Eddie Kingston | Journey of The Mad King
He’s typically wrestled between 40-60 times a year. After seeing the toll his body took on Dynamite, it is clear to see why. While some may suggest it isn’t all that much, the time it likely takes to recover from them and compete at the level he has is understandable. There was no mercy applied when he and Cody exchanged blows. Strike for strike, blow for blow, Cody and Kingston nearly wiped each other out. To see what they did was remarkable. His battle on this night is no different than he would do while in the United Kingdom competing for such promotions as PROGRESS or Revolution Pro Wrestling. His ability to adapt and adjust to his opponent, along with having his opponent modify and adapt to him, is tremendous.
What has long given Kingston a sense of value and purpose is connecting with his opponent and his audience. Kingston has earned the respect of his opposition, as evident in who he stands against in the ring. There is no mistaking that his passion for wrestling is evident. He hits hard and speaks with conviction. There is no middle ground from the Yonkers, New York native. Much like another Yonkers native Tommy Dreamer, Eddie Kingston loves what he does.
This Night Is Just The Beginning
Despite saying that 2019 was going to be his final year, it seems that 2019 was simply another year to reinvent himself. Kingston stated in his recent loss to Cody is that losses are learning experiences. A loss doesn’t dictate the future. What he’s achieved in the past dictates the future. It is hard to look at someone’s body of work and categorize it to merely on one night. Eddie Kingston did this night is no different from what he’s done every night for nearly two decades. The Mad King is as respected as anyone in wrestling today. If he bleeds, it means something. If he screams for his opposition to hit him, it likely means even more.
When he had a tryout for the WWE in 2016, the story of Eddie Kingston’s career may be unlike what we see today. Fans may never know of the struggles that he has had to endure since that tryout. Eddie Kingston is a man not unlike several unsigned talents today. His value is in what he says AND does. Fans that love him will stand by him. As someone that has seen him first hand and interacted with him briefly after a show, it was an absolute pleasure. After telling him ‘thank you for not killing me,’ he smiled and nodded.
Whether fans see Kingston in AEW again or not is irrelevant. He has achieved more in two decades than many could only hope to do. If the ultimate goal is a contract with AEW, then we wish him all the best as he certainly has earned it. However, if that doesn’t come to be on this night, his passion evident. His violence was unmistakable, and his convictions were clear. The Mad King lives on his terms.