Portal:Professional wrestling

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Professional wrestling, or pro wrestling, is a non-competitive professional sport, which is also considered an athletic performing art, containing strong elements of catch wrestling, mock combat and theatre. It has origins in carnival sideshows in the late 19th century as part of displays of athletics and strength. Modern professional wrestling usually features striking and grappling techniques, which are modeled after diverse sets of wrestling and pugilistic styles from around the world.

Professional wrestling has become a pervasive form of entertainment especially in Japan and North American countries. High-profile figures in the sport often become cultural icons in their native or adopted home countries, such as Ric Flair, André the Giant, Hulk Hogan, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and The Rock in the United States; Rikidozan, Antonio Inoki, Giant Baba and The Crush Girls (Chigusa Nagayo and Lioness Asuka) in Japan; El Santo, Blue Demon and Mil Máscaras in Mexico; and Bret Hart in Canada. Leading universities have developed courses of study on the cultural significance of professional wrestling.

Professional wrestling is a billion-dollar industry, drawing revenue from ticket sales, television broadcasts, branded merchandise and home video. It was instrumental in making pay-per-view a viable method of content delivery. Annual shows such as WrestleMania are among the highest-selling pay-per-view programming. Currently, the dominant professional wrestling company worldwide is the United States-based WWE, which absorbed many smaller regional companies in the late twentieth century, as well as its primary competitor, World Championship Wrestling. Ring of Honor and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling are two other popular promotions in the United States. In Mexico, the top promotions are Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre and Asistencia Asesoría y Administración; in Japan, it is New Japan Pro Wrestling, All Japan Pro Wrestling, and Pro Wrestling Noah; and in South Africa, it is World Wrestling Professionals. (more...)

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Triple H, the World Heavyweight Champion at SummerSlam.

SummerSlam (2003) was a professional wrestling pay-per-view event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), which took place on August 24, 2003 at the America West Arena in Phoenix, Arizona. It was the 16th annual SummerSlam event and starred wrestlers from the Raw and SmackDown! brands.

Nine professional wrestling matches were scheduled on the event's card, which featured a supercard, a scheduling of more than one main event. The first was an Elimination Chamber match featuring wrestlers from the Raw brand fighting in a ring surrounded by a steel structure of chain and girders. World Heavyweight Champion Triple H defeated Chris Jericho, Goldberg, Kevin Nash, Randy Orton, and Shawn Michaels to retain his championship. The other main event featured wrestlers from the SmackDown! brand, in which defending WWE Champion Kurt Angle defeated challenger Brock Lesnar in a standard wrestling match, also known as a singles match. Two featured bouts were scheduled on the undercard. In a No Disqualification match between wrestlers from the Raw brand, Kane defeated Rob Van Dam. The other was a standard match involving four wrestlers from the SmackDown! brand; WWE United States Champion Eddie Guerrero defeated Chris Benoit, Rhyno, and Tajiri.

The event marked the second time the Elimination Chamber format was used by WWE; the first was at Survivor Series 2002. Including its scripted buildup, SummerSlam (2003) grossed over $715,000 ticket sales from an attendance of 16,113 and received about 415,000 pay-per-view buys, more than the following year's event. This event helped WWE increase its pay-per-view revenue by $6.2 million from the previous year. When the event was released on DVD, it reached a peak position of third on Billboard's DVD Sales Chart. (more...)

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Credit: JBZA2003

The current universal stage set for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)'s Raw, SmackDown, and NXT shows (ECW graphics pictured). The set was introduced in January 2008 in conjunction with WWE beginning to broadcast their programs in high-definition. Before so, each show had their own separate stage sets.

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