As a lifelong fan of wrestling, we often compare today’s talent to the characters of years ago. The wrestling personalities of the 1980s were thought to be the strongest. People stood out with big mouths and even bigger abilities in the ring. Granted, fans can still enjoy these standouts today but they’re far fewer in number than they were at the peak of wrestling in the late 1990s. Thankfully, however, we have a one-in-a-kind talent of this nature in current independent wrestling star Tony Deppen.
Tony Deppen: The Hell-Raiser of Hershey, PA
When you see Tony Deppen in the ring applying his well-studied craft you’re very likely to respect him right off the bat. His otherwise demeanor may not win him a lot of fans though! Deppen comes across as everything anti-establishment and pro-himself. Keep in mind he hijacked an entire series of matches on season 2 of Beyond Wrestling’s Uncharted Territory! Granted, Deppen started from the bottom of the totem pole when he first appeared for Beyond. It’s pretty inspiring to see how he’s progressed. He played dirty to stay at the top of Beyond’s Discovery Gauntlet series, but Deppen fights hard for his accomplishments.
Tony Deppen may be a new name to many, but he’s a veteran on the indie scene. Deppen made his wrestling debut in 2009 after doing some backyard wrestling and formal training. Several well-known promotions have featured him in matches, including Chikara, Beyond, PWG, and GCW. Deppen has held championship gold in a number of promotions as well including On Point Wrestling and True Wrestling. I’ve seen Deppen matches in several shows around the US, all the way from the West Coast to down south in Nashville and Atlanta. Deppen has wrestled in Canada, and made his Japan debut as well last August when on tour with GCW.
Deppen On The Indie Scene
With the ongoing state of independent wrestling, it’s difficult to predict anything at the moment. However, I’m certain of one thing – when wrestling is back to some kind of normalcy. Tony Deppen will be the top guy in Beyond Wrestling. Even at the beginning of 2020 and the end of last year, it seemed as if the indies were in constant upheaval. 2019 saw several indie stars signed to major companies and gaps left in a lot of promotions. Deppen holds a position right now at the top of the list of outstanding independent wrestlers. Prior to current circumstances, Deppen’s scheduled ROH debut would have taken place in April. There’s frustration in seeing the brakes put on after such a long trip to the top.
Deppen’s story arc in Beyond Wrestling may be his most well known. He made his first appearance for Beyond in 2018 at their cross-promotional ‘Clan Feuds’ show with Chikara. It was at this event where he tagged with Fire Ant as well as his partners in F.I.S.T. They successfully defeated the rest of The Colony and Razerhawk. Deppen went on to face AR Fox at Beyond’s first Please Come Back event later that year. Team F.I.S.T. (Deppen and his partner Travis Huckabee) also competed in Beyond’s 2018 Tournament for Tomorrow but it wasn’t until a year later that we’d see Deppen break out as a singles star.
Tony Deppen: The Future, and Beyond
During season 2 of Beyond’s flagship show Uncharted Territory, Deppen was on fire. The show featured the Discovery Gauntlet, a series of matches focused on finding new talent on the independent wrestling scene. Deppen made the whole Gauntlet his own for the majority of the second season. After taking his first Gauntlet opponent (Matt Makowski) out of action, Deppen went on to defeat some of the biggest names in independent wrestling. Daniel Garcia, Manders, AJ Gray, Josh Bishop – all defeated by Deppen in the Discovery Gauntlet. In fact, it wasn’t until the final match of the Gauntlet that Makowski reappeared and finally defeated Deppen in the match that never took place at the beginning of the season.
The drama of Deppen’s rise in the Discovery Gauntlet made for a fun week-to-week viewing of Uncharted Territory. More importantly, the Deppen character was solidly established with newer fans. Now that Season 3 is somewhere on the horizon, I’m fully certain that Tony Deppen will be one of the major players in Beyond Wrestling. His most recent match there with John Silver at the Beyond Championship Wrestling event was great evidence that the future is in damn good hands.
I’m more than ready to see Deppen get his due, and not just in Beyond Wrestling. There’s a lot of ground left for this guy to cover. He’s still got an ROH debut to make, and with GCW gearing up for a UK debut this year I’m almost certain Deppen would be a part of the touring crew (and God save the Queen if that’s the case). The year has started off rough for everyone in wrestling, but I have faith that the rest of 2020 is staunchly in Deppen’s favor.