Tales from Ringside: When the Inmates Run the Asylum

Mike takes you back to the Summer of 2018, where Monster Pro Wrestling had their version of a 24/7 Championship, the Ripper Title.

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TALES FROM RINGSIDE
Photo / Robbie Sutter

Sometimes in life, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  With the WWE introducing the new 24/7 Title the night after Money in the Bank, I got flashbacks of the summer I had my own version in Monster Pro Wrestling when inmates ran the asylum.

This week’s tale takes you back to the summer of 2018.  In Monster Pro Wrestling, as with most promotions in Alberta, there is a break in the action for the month in July.  This gets extended for MPW, as the only event for the Summer is the Renegade Memorial Tag Team Tournament in August.  So, for almost two full months, there is not a singles match in MPW.  I wanted to find a way to change that.  Enter the Ripper Title.

The Ripper Hardcore Title was created a few years earlier, in honor of one of MPW’s fallen brothers, Trevor “Ripper” Grimolfson.  Trevor worked as a friend of the wrestlers, a ring attendant, and whatever other position he could to help the MPW product.  He was training to become a wrestler but sadly passed away before he had a chance for his first match.  The Title was christened in his honor and was MPW’s version of the hardcore title at the time.  So, I thought the opportunity presented itself to have the title defended 24/7.  With the many festivals that Edmonton has in the summer, it was a great opportunity to get some extra exposure.  Any publicity cannot be bad publicity even if inmates ran the asylum.

Ripper Champion Jude Dawkins is tied up by the Cat’s Meow members (L to R) Nate Nixon, Kato, Rick Jules, and James Crowder.

So at the end of the Ripper title match in July, the current champion, the Cheetahbear Jude Dawkins, was informed of my decision and was looking forward to it.  What followed not so much.  Before Jude could make it out of the building, he was attacked, tied up, gagged, and beat up with a baseball bat by the dirtiest faction in MPW, the Cat’s Meow.  Dawkins’ arch-rival, the Asian Adonis Kato, gained a pin on a tied-up Dawkins and became the new Ripper Champion.  With Psycho Sawyer being the voice of sanity, realizing that everyone would be gunning for him for the summer, Kato “passed along” the Ripper Title to the Redeemer Rick Jules, via to a very conspicuous tap-out.  Kato informed Jules that he expects him to “return the favor” at the end of the summer.

Inmates the Asylum
Rick Jules “taps out” Kato to win the Ripper Title.

What ensued from there, to say the least, was pure insanity.  We had Blake Kannon dress up as a delivery man to sneak in and win the title.  Psycho Sawyer misted an unsuspecting Riot Roth to take the title off the trainee.  Sawyer was the longest reigning champ of almost 4 weeks, only to lose the title in order to save her cat Marble from Blake Kannon. Kannon loses in an apparent carjacking by TY Jackson.  Tyler James becomes the Second Grand Slam Champion in MPW History by winning the Ripper Championship off Kannon but loses it in a poker game to King B in a poker game.  Rick Jules manages to get the title back from King B just before the September show and delivers it to Kato as promised.

Inmates the Asylum
Ripper Champion Psycho Sawyer is approached by a masked Blake Kannon, as a disapproving Ref Ben looks on.  NOTE: Blake got a shot to the nether-regions for his efforts.

At the September show, Jude Dawkins managed to tie Kato up, get a little payback, and regain the Ripper Title before the 24/7 rule was taken out.  I, unfortunately, had to get in the ring during a match to stop the insanity and alter the rules of the Championship.  As of November, the title has been rechristened the Ripper Challenge Title, as any Challenger can challenge for the title in any stipulation they so wish.  The Champion then has the choice to accept the challenge or forfeit the title to the Challenger.  Trevor was always a man that lived up to any challenge, and I wanted the title to represent someone who would take on all comers.

Jude has truly been a fighting champion since then, competing in triple threat matches, matches where he could only use one arm, and even a mustache-twirling competition???  Jude had survived until he lost a handicap match to the Tattoo Terminators this past week, and now Massive Damage is the new Ripper Champ as I type this article.

Inmates the Asylum
Tyler James goes “All In” putting his Ripper Title on the line in this High Stakes game of poker.

If you want to check out the travels of the Ripper Title in 2018, just check out the video yourself here.

Personally, I think that the 24/7 rule was a success in many ways.  It showcased a lot of mid-card talent that otherwise may not have been given the chance to show off their personalities.  My only regret was not being able to have the time to oversee it a little more, as I had to deal with a chaotic Heavyweight Title picture for most of the summer, of inmates running the asylum.

But that is a tale for another time…where inmates aren’t running the asylum.

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