Zema Ion in 2012
|Ring name(s)||Michael Montecarlo
|Billed height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Billed weight||170 lb (77 kg)|
October 5, 1986 |
Los Angeles, California
|Billed from||Manila, Philippines
|Trained by||Super Hentai
Taz El Ferroz
Michael Paris (born October 5, 1986) is a Filipino American  professional wrestler, better known by his former ring name Zema Ion. He is currently signed with Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) under the ring name DJ Z, where he is a one time X Division Champion.
- 1 Professional wrestling career
- 1.1 Early career
- 1.2 International Wrestling Cartel
- 1.3 Mexico (2008–2012)
- 1.4 Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
- 2 Personal life
- 3 In wrestling
- 4 Championships and accomplishments
- 5 References
- 6 External links
Professional wrestling career
In 2003, Paris began training to become a professional wrestler at the Coalition of Competition in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania under trainers Super Hentai, Shirley Doe, and Glenn Spectre. He trained there for 14 months before debuting as Shiima Xion, the "first Filipino male model of wrestling" on August 21, 2004 against Jason Gory in Wheeling, West Virginia for Black Diamond Wrestling. Shiima Xion competed throughout West Virginia and Ohio in the fall of 2004, since he was not old enough to compete in the state of Pennsylvania. Shortly after turning 18, however, Xion began competing regularly for the International Wrestling Cartel, as well as making appearances in Chikara, Far North Wrestling, and Pro Wrestling Unplugged.
By early 2006, the Shiima Xion character had become more of a glam rock star than a male model, as Xion began wearing make-up to the ring, and had also changed his hair color from black to red/blonde. His bizarre hair style soon became his trademark, with Shiima becoming best known for hairspraying his hair during matches. The androgynous character eventually caught the attention of Japanese wrestling promoter Sanshiro Takagi, who invited 19-year old Shiima to tour Japan with his company, Dramatic Dream Team (DDT) in the summer of 2006. Shiima Xion made his Japanese debut in a losing effort, as Xion and the MAC were defeated by CMLL/KO-D Tag Team Champions, Dick Togo and Nobutaka Moribe, on June 22, 2006 in Shinjuku, Japan. Xion's only win on the tour was on July 2, 2006, in which Xion, Kudo, and Mikami defeated Harashima, Toru Owashi, and Yusuke Inokuma in Shimane, Japan. Shiima Xion was featured in the Introducing... article in Pro Wrestling Illustrated's The Wrestler, volume 19, 2007. The magazine was released on newsstands nationwide on December 4, 2007, with a two-page article spread on Shiima.
International Wrestling Cartel
Feuding and teaming with Jason Gory (2004–2008)
Shiima Xion made his IWC debut on November 6, 2004 in Munhall, Pennsylvania. Shiima lost to Jason Gory, who was also making his IWC debut that night. The two feuded into 2005, culminating at IWC No Excuses on July 29, 2005 where Gory came out victorious. Next month, Shiima would receive a shot at Shirley Doe's IWC World Heavyweight Championship and lost. For the next few months he would team with Chris Maverick as the International Males which ended with an IWC Tag Team Champions, Gambino Brothers Moving Company, and lost. Shiima would once again come across Gory at IWC Super Indy V on April 15, 2006, in which Shiima defeated Gory with the Filipino Destroyer. Post-match saw the two shake hands for the first time in their near two-year long rivalry and eventually led to them forming a tag team known as Team Catfish and eventually Babyface Fire (BFF).
BFF teamed for the first time on July 7, 2006, and were defeated by Chris Hero and Claudio Castagnoli. The team is best known for their scramble matches with the Gambino Brothers, Sexual Harassment, and the Cleveland Mafia. The second of these scrambles, which took place on December 9, 2006, saw BFF capture their first IWC Tag Team Championship. Xion & Gory held onto the belts until March 2007, in which The Gambino Brothers challenged the champions, despite both BFF members already competing in singles action earlier in the night. The challenge was accepted, and Xion was pinned by Marshall Gambino after interference from Jimmy Demarco. After losing the titles, Shiima reached the final of the Super Indy VI Tournament but was defeated by Larry Sweeney. Later that year, after a violent feud with the Gambinos, BFF won their second IWC Tag Team Championship on December 8, 2007. They would hold onto the tag titles twice as long as their first reign, until Sexual Harassment defeated BFF for the belts in June 2008. They also lost their rematch in a huge TLC match in August 2008.
Singles championship pursuits (2008–2011)
In September 2008, Xion defeated Marshall Gambino to qualify for another tournament, for the vacant IWC World Heavyweight Championship. Xion defeated Justin Idol, John McChesney, and Raymond Rowe to advance to the finals, where he defeated Jimmy DeMarco with a 630 splash to win the tournament and the title on October 26, 2008. After only one successful defence, Shiima lost the IWC World Heavyweight Championship to Raymond Rowe. On March 7, defeated Rowe in a no disqualification match for the World Heavyweight Championship. Their feud would culminate on March 28, where Shiima once again defeated him. Shiima's reign was littered with DQ finishes, usually Shiima getting himself disqualified. On December 12, Jimmy DeMarco defeated Shiima for the World Heavyweight Championship. On January 30, 2010, the two went up against each other in an extreme rules match with Shane Douglas as the special referee which DeMarco won.
On his way to the Super Indy IX Final, Xion defeated Ricky Reyes, Frightmare and Lince Dorado. On May 8, in the final, he defeated both Azrieal and Johnny Gargano to win the tournament and the IWC Super Indy Championship. On August 21, he defended the title in a steel cage against Super Hentai and the two would face off once again in January 2011 where Shiima lost the title. 2011 would prove to be an annoying year for Shiima as he had multiple title shots including several IWC World Heavyweight Championship shots and one IWC Super Indy Championship shot. Shiima would leave IWC to focus on other promotions, namely Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. However, he has returned under his TNA name Zema Ion for sporadic appearances. On October 19, 2013, as Shiima Xion returned to IWC at Retro reunion, defeating Facade for the Super Indy Championship.
Shiima Xion made his Desastre Total Ultraviolento debut on May 3, 2008 in Mexico City, Mexico in a tag match with Joe Lider against El Generico and Crazy Boy. Xion lost the match after a top rope brainbuster from El Generico. Xion returned to DTU on July 11, 2009 in Tulancingo, Mexico in a 3-way light tube deathmatch with Crazy Boy and Extreme Tiger. Xion lost after a Swanton Bomb from Extreme Tiger. Xion also competed in DTU`s "Fashion" event on July 26, 2009 in Mexico City, where Xion challenged for the DTU championship in a 3-way match with Aero Boy and Ragde. Aero Boy became the new DTU champion after pinning Xion. Shiima joined the AAA roster in summer of 2009, debuting on a Cuautitlan, Mexico TV taping in a six-man tag that featured Xion, Teddy Hart and Electroshock going against La Parka, Jack Evans and Extreme Tiger. Xion was pinned following a double stomp from Tiger. Xion also wrestled for International Wrestling Revolution Group, Lucha POP and X-Project.
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
Various Feuds (2011–2012)
On June 23, 2011, Paris made an appearance on Total Nonstop Action Wrestling's Impact Wrestling television show, working under the ring name Zema Ion, defeating Dakota Darsow and Federico Palacios in a three–way X Division match to advance to the tournament finals at Destination X, where a contract with the promotion would be at stake. At the pay-per-view, Ion competed in a four-way match against Jack Evans, Low Ki and the eventual winner of the match, Austin Aries. On July 24 it was reported that Paris had signed a contract with TNA. Zema Ion made his return to TNA on the August 11 edition of Impact Wrestling, appearing in a backstage segment, where Eric Bischoff introduced new rules to the X Division. The following week, Ion took part in a gauntlet match to determine the X Division rankings. After eliminating Mark Haskins from the match, Ion was himself eliminated by Jesse Sorensen, placing him fifth in the rankings. Ion returned on the September 28 edition of Impact Wrestling, working in a five man ladder match, which was won by Brian Kendrick. On the December 15 edition of Impact Wrestling, Ion started Best of Three Series with Anthony Nese to determine the third and final challenger for the X Division Championship at Genesis. Ion, now wrestling as a heel, won the first match of the series. Two weeks later, Ion defeated Nese in a Contract on a Pole match to win the series 2-1 and advance to the pay-per-view. On January 8, 2012, at Genesis, Ion was the second man eliminated from the X Division Championship match, which also included Austin Aries, Jesse Sorensen and Kid Kash. Ion then helped Aries defeat Sorensen and retain his title. On February 12 at Against All Odds, Ion defeated Sorensen in an X Division number one contender's match, after Sorensen was unable to continue after suffering a legitimate injury and was counted out. Ion received his shot at the X Division Championship on the March 8 edition of Impact Wrestling, winning the match via disqualification, after champion Austin Aries was caught using Ion's hair spray on him; as a result, Aries retained his title. Ion received another title shot on March 18 at Victory Road, but was defeated by Aries via submission. On the following edition of Impact Wrestling, Ion failed again to capture the X Division Championship after he fought Aries, Kid Kash and Anthony Neese to a no contest, following interference from Bully Ray. Ion received another shot at the X Division Championship on the May 10 episode of Impact Wrestling, but was again defeated by Aries. On the June 14 episode of Impact Wrestling, Ion competed in his first Ultimate X match, where he and Chris Sabin unsuccessfully challenged Aries for the X Division Championship.
X Division Champion and The BroMans (2012–present)
On July 8 at Destination X, Ion entered a tournament to determine the new X Division Champion, defeating Flip Cassanova in his first round match. Later that same event, Ion defeated Kenny King, Mason Andrews and Sonjay Dutt in an Ultimate X match to become the new X Division Champion and the first Filipino to win a championship in TNA. Ion made his first successful title defense on the July 26 episode of Impact Wrestling, defeating Kenny King after an interference from Bobby Roode. The following week, Ion and Roode were defeated in a tag team match by King and Aries, with King pinning Ion for the win. On August 12 at Hardcore Justice, Ion defeated King to retain the X Division Championship. On September 9 at No Surrender, Ion made another successful title defense, this time against Sonjay Dutt. Four days later on Impact Wrestling, Ion defeated Dutt in a rematch to once again retain the X Division Championship. On the October 4 episode of Impact Wrestling, Ion defended the X Division Championship against Douglas Williams, making him submit with a modified armbar (now known as Submission Impossible), however, after refusing to release the hold, the referee reversed the decision and disqualified Ion, but as the title cannot change hands on a disqualification, Ion retained the title. On October 14 at Bound for Glory, Ion lost the X Division Championship to Rob Van Dam, ending his reign at 98 days. Ion received his rematch for the title on the October 25 episode of Impact Wrestling, but was again defeated by Van Dam. On the February 7, 2013, episode of Impact Wrestling, Ion unsuccessfully challenged Van Dam for the X Division Championship in a three-way match, also involving Kenny King. Ion received another shot at the X Division Championship on March 10 at Lockdown, but was defeated by defending champion Kenny King in a three-way match, which also included Christian York. On the March 21 episode of Impact Wrestling, Ion failed again to capture the X Division Championship from King in a three-way match, also involving Sonjay Dutt. Ion received one more shot at the X Division Championship on the April 18 episode of Impact Wrestling, but was pinned by Kenny King in a three-way match, which also included Petey Williams and removed Ion from the title contention. After several months out injured, he returned to Impact on a regular basis and on the November 28 edition of Impact, Zema joined The BroMans as their personal DJ. Ion won the Feast or Fired TNA X Division Championship briefcase. On January 30, 2014 (Airing in February 6, 2014), unsuccessfully cashed in his briefcase against TNA X Division Champion, Austin Aries. This made him the first person to unsuccessfully cash in the X Division Feast or Fired briefcase. As of 2014 his ring name changed to DJ Z.
Paris went to high school at Oak Glen High School in New Cumberland, West Virginia. Paris is a journalism major at West Virginia University. He is half Filipino and half French. His father met his mother when she was a mail order bride. Paris was featured in the documentary Slammed: Inside Indie Wrestling. In May 2013, he started a Kickstarter campaign to raise money to help pay to remove a growth in his bladder; however, he only managed to raise $7,000 out of the $30,000 he needed.
- Finishing moves
- 450° splash
- 630° senton
- Bible Black (Running double high knee to a seated opponent transitioned into a rana pin)
- Gory bomb – TNA
- Filipino Destroyer (Inverted snapmare driver)
- From Lust to Dust (Snapmare driver)
- Submission Impossible (Wrist-clutch reverse crucifix armbar) – TNA
- Signature moves
- Entrance themes
Championships and accomplishments
- Absolute Intense Wrestling
- Championship Wrestling Experience
- CWE Undisputed Championship (1 time)
- Far North Wrestling
- FNW Cruiserweight Championship (2 times)
- Independent Wrestling Association East Coast
- IWA East Coast Zero-G Crown (2008)
- International Wrestling Cartel
- International Pro Wrestling
- IPW Texas Heavyweight Championship (3 times, current)
- New Era Pro Wrestling
- NEPW United States Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Jason Gory
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- Real Championship Wrestling
- RCW Cruiserweight Championship (1 time)
- Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
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