Wrestling Superstars Live
|Formerly||AWA Superstars of Wrestling|
Wrestling Superstars Live was a governing body for a group of independent professional wrestling promotions and sanctioned various championships. It was founded in 1996 by Dale Gagner and Jonnie Stewart.
In 1996, Dale Gagner and his associate Jonnie Stewart, former American Wrestling Association (AWA) employees, legally began using the AWA name in the state of Minnesota with the authorization from the Minnesota Secretary of State and formed an organization known as AWA Superstars of Wrestling. They began trading off the organization as something of a continuation of the American Wrestling Association, which closed down in 1991. Dale Gagner even began using the pseudonym "Dale Gagne", (removing the letter "r" from his name). This was in reference to Verne Gagne, the original owner of the American Wrestling Association.
By 2005, the organization began to franchise the AWA Superstars of Wrestling name, selling memberships to existing independent promotions around the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and Japan. Several members of AWA Superstars of Wrestling were former members of the National Wrestling Alliance. In 2007, most of the memberships were terminated, and Gagner and Stewart began co-promoting shows with a small number of regional promoters instead.
According to many wrestling journalists, and testimonial by their Main Event performer, Sgt. Slaughter, Gagne and Stewart hold the unofficial record for live attendance for an independent, non-televised wrestling promotion. Their event in Pine Bluff, AK, (5,397 paid) broke the record held by Sam DeCerco's, Windy City Pro Wrestling's event in 1988 at the International Ampitheater in Chicago. Events in Fresno, CA, Gallup, New Mexico and The Stampede Arena in Greeley, CO, drew well over 4,000 paid fans for each production. With Jerry Lawler as their main event, in Harrington, Delaware, the company came close to breaking their own record with just over 5,000 paid.
Lawsuit, renaming and reorganization
On April 26, 2007 World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) filed a lawsuit against Dale Gagner alone, citing trademark infringement, as WWE owned all American Wrestling Association properties due to their purchase after the AWA's closure.
In a move to sidestep WWE, Jonnie Stewart, with the help of a Chicago based copyright law firm, attempted to trademark the name "American Wrestling Alliance" instead. However, The United States Patent and Trademark Office later indicated that the request was abandoned in February 2008.
On October 29, 2008, the court ruled in favor of WWE. The court ruling prohibits Gagner and his associate from exploiting or trading on the AWA name or any other derivatives. As a result, the organization was renamed to Wrestling Superstars Live. In a press release sent out October 30, 2007, the organization announced that it will no longer sanction independent territories. Gagner and Stewart noted that each of the remaining territories would be individually assessed.
When the organization was formed in 1996, Wrestling Superstars Live claimed the lineages and names of original American Wrestling Association championships. However, following WWE's filed lawsuit against Gagner and Stewart, Wrestling Superstars Live's references to the AWA became prohibited. Due to there being no connection to the American Wrestling Association, Wrestling Superstars Live championship reigns are recognized from 1996 and forward.
|Championship||Champion||Date won||Location||Previous holder|
|World Heavyweight Championship||Keith Walker||February 21, 2009||Michigan City, Indiana||Ricky Landell|
|World Light Heavyweight Championship||Kirby Mack||January 7, 2007||Pottstown, Pennsylvania||T.J. Mack|
|World Tag Team Championship||Team Vision
(Chasyn Rance and Mister Saint Laurent)
|April 18, 2008||Fayetteville, West Virginia||Vacant - Won the 2008 Mountain Mayhem and defeated Team Macktion (Kirby & T.J. Mack) in the Finals|
|Fighting World Championship||Keith Walker||September 13, 2008||Waukesha, Wisconsin||Ricky Landell|
- The United States Championship was abandoned in December 2007.
- The AWA Japan Women's Championship was retired in 2007
Wrestling Superstars Live had members in the United States, Canada, England and Australia.
|Britannia Wrestling Promotions||New York||2013 - Present|
|CWF Mid-Atlantic||David Marquez||California||2013-present|
|Dutch Pro Wrestling||Oregon||2013-2015|
|OMEGA Championship Wrestling||Utah||2013-Present|
|New Zealand Wide Pro Wrestling||Rocky T & Joe DeFalco||Nevada||2013-present|
|Premier Wrestling Federation||Arizona||2013-2015|
|Premiere Wrestling Xperience||Arkansas||2013-2014|
|All Star Wrestling||Kansas||2013-present|
|Queens of Combat||Texas||2013-2015|
|FireStar Pro Wrestling||Massachusetts||2013-present|
|Monster Pro Wrestling||Manitoba Canada||2013-present|
|Eastern All-Star Wrestling||Tennessee||2013-2015|
|North Carolina Wrestling Association||Florida||2013-2015|
|WHO - Wrestling's Heroes & Outlaws||Minnesota||2013-2015|
|ECPW - North Carolina||Texas||November 2015-present|
|Canadian Wrestling's Elite||Texas||November 2015-present|
- Andrew Fallon
- Aaron Aguilera
- Brian Lawler
- Basham (Douglas Basham)
- The Damaja (Daniel Hollie)
- "King of Old School" Steve Corino
- Phil Davis
- Sean Davis
- Arya Daivari
- Danny Dominion
- G.Q. Gallo
- Larry Huntley
- Ricky Landell
- Lightning Blind Mike (Michael Hunt)
- Kirby Mack
- T.J. Mack
- N8 Mattson
- The New York Gangster
- Mister Saint Laurent
- Noah Lott (Adam Johnson)
- The Nighthawk
- Chasyn Rance
- Sonny Roselli
- Alex Silva
- Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka (James Reiher)
- C.T. Night "The Boss"
- Jonnie Stewart
- "Living Legend" Larry Zbyszko
Tag teams and stables
- Team MackTion (Kirby Mack and T.J. Mack)
- Basham and The Damaja
- The Heartbreak Express (Phil Davis and Sean Davis)
- The Heartbreakers (Antonio and Romeo)
- Dale Gagne (Dale Gagner) - President
- Jonnie Stewart - Executive Vice President
- Ricky Landell - Vice President / Operations
- Kirby Mack - Vice President / Creative and New Markets
- Browning, Dan (2007-04-28). "World Wrestling sues promoter". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on 2007-04-28.
- "News and Notes, May 4, 2007". GeorgiaWrestlingHistory.com. 2007-05-04.
- Ryder, Bob (2007-04-26). "WWE Files Lawsuit Against "Gagne" For Trademark Violations Associated With AWA". 1wrestling.com.
- "WWE wins trademark infringement lawsuit over AWA". wrestleview.com. 2008-10-28.
- Gerweck, Steve. "AWA Discontinues Sanctioning". Gerweck.net. Archived from the original on 2007-11-01. Retrieved 2007-10-30.
For Immediate Release.