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Last Saturday night in Houston, RISE partnered with Reality of Wrestling to present RISE 12 – ROW on The RISE. Fans on hand saw a stellar Live Event, headlined by two title matches. The Guardians of RISE were on the line as Paradise Lost with Rosemary defended against The Killer Death Machines. The Phoenix of RISE was defended as Mercedes Martinez put the title on the line against Kylie Rae.

What many fans do not know is we had producers and crew from our friends at IMPACT Wrestling on hand behind the scenes, filming many interviews, promos, vignettes and video package elements that will tell the tale not just of events filmed at ROW on The RISE, but also pave the road to our biggest project yet: RISE 13 – LEGENDARY, LIVE on iPPV via FITE TV March 29 from the Berwyn Eagles Club in suburban Chicago.

All elements filmed at ROW on The RISE are being compiled into Episodes 23-27 of RISE – ASCENT and will be available as soon as possible for subscribers at riseascent.com, our Apps on iOS and Android and twitch.tv/risedtwa.

With our primary in-ring content editor currently occupied on another project and of video package team currently working on very special elements for these episodes, it will take a bit longer than a standard in-ring only product release. But, if you have followed RISE – ASCENT, hopefully you agree that the video package elements add a great deal to our overall stories and are totally worth the wait. As an example, we are attaching our first video packages setting the stage for RISE 8’s Phoenix of RISE Championship Match between then-Phoenix of RISE Champion Delilah Doom and challenger Shotzi Blackheart at the end of this article.

And for those of you who collect RISE as physical media on DVD and Blu-ray, do not worry. The entire tapings will eventually be available as well, as was the case with RISE – ASCENT Collections from Pittsburgh, Naperville and Orlando.

We hope to have the first of these episodes out for subscribers of all streaming platforms in early February.

We can hardly wait to show you just how much fun we had in Houston.

We can hardly wait for you to begin the journey with us on the road to LEGENDARY!

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RISE 13 – LEGENDARY will be a historic event not just for RISE, but for all of professional wrestling. This will be the first RISE iPPV, streaming worldwide via FITE. It will also be the largest roster of women professional wrestlers ever assembled for a single event!

With RISE 12 – ROW on The RISE in the books, the card for RISE 13 is starting to take form. Matches already announced include:

Phoenix of RISE Championship – “The Latina Sensation” Mercedes Martinez defends against “Smiley” Kylie Rae

Guardians of RISE Tag Team Championship – Paradise Lost, Raven’s Ash and Dust with Rosemary defend against The Killer Death Machines, Jessicka Havok and Nevaeh.

RISE of The Contender – A 30 Woman over-the-top-rope, ordered-entry Battle Royal, with the winner receiving the ability to name what RISE event she will challenge whoever the reigning champion may be for The Phoenix of RISE.

“The Ballsy Badass” Shotzi Blackheart vs. Delilah Doom with Rosemary

Kris Wolf and Meat Friends vs. Su Yung and The Legion of Undead Brides

Team Sea Stars, Delmi Exo and Ashley Vox vs. Team Blue Nation, Charli Evans and Jessica Troy

Thunderkitty vs. Regina “Honey” Badger

And much more more!

Front Row is now sold out, but fans in Chicago can still attend live! Tickets are available at risedtwa.ticketleap.com.

And soon, you will be able to order RISE 13 – LEGENDARY via all websites and Apps from our friends at FITE!

Join us, worldwide as we present this massive scale event, truly showcasing Today’s Best, Tomorrow’s Brightest. The future of women’s professional wrestling is here.

The future is LEGENDARY!

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After meeting 22 women in yesterday’s World Class Development Seminar at the Reality of Wrestling training school in Houston, we have made our decisions on the Prospective Talent Pool and who will be featured making their RISE debuts and returns.

Today’s RISE – ASCENT Tapings will showcase…

The Insidious One

Phoebe

Rok-C

Big Mama

Killa Kate

Raychell Rose

Ali Bama

Hawlee Cromwell

“Rookie Jen” Jenna Lynn

AQA

and more!

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When RISE was holding its first event, RISE 1 – IGNITE November 10, 2016 in Berwyn, IL, I don’t think many expected us to announce our second Seminar and Live Event. I think even fewer expected to hear it would be in Los Angeles, California.

We knew very early on that it wouldn’t be realistic for developing Women Wrestlers to always travel, often long distances, to the Chicago area for every Seminar. We knew we would have to branch out, and we knew we would need to go to areas where there seemed to be large populations of young, aspiring Women Athletes, the target audience for RISE Seminars.

In just the first two years, we have held World Class Development Seminars domestically in Chicago, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh and Orlando and internationally in Norwich, England. Through these Seminars, To date, 97 women chosen from these Seminars have been chosen to perform on RISE Live Events.

Some may remember we even held a few RISE on The Road Seminars. The first of those was held with our friends at Sabotage Wrestling in Austin, TX. It was important to me to find a way to stick a toe in the proverbial water somewhere in the State of Texas. There seemed to be a growing number of women wrestlers, and I wanted to see what would happen if we did something smaller scale to see just how many women talents in Texas were interested in the RISE variety of learning.

And then it happened – RISE on The Road sold out.

So we did another one – RISE on the Road sold out.

And on top of that, we saw a different mix of talent in both. It became apparent, we needed to bring a full scale RISE World Class Development Seminar and Live Event to Texas. And we wanted to do it in a grand way.

And that’s where Reality of Wrestling came into play.

ROW, the wrestling promotion and training school opened by WWE Hall of Famer Booker T and Queen Sharmell , we knew had great track record for developing talent. RISE stars Kylie Rae, Miranda Alize and Hyan all came from the ROW system and, as fans know, have been key parts of RISE Live Events since joining our roster. Add to that ROW showing tremendous focus on their Diamond Division, holding several Ladies Night Out events in addition to heavily featuring women on ROW Events, it just seemed a right fit.

And with increased focus from RISE in getting talent prepared to perform in televised and video centric environments, Booker T World Gym Arena is a venue readily equipped to help talent develop in these areas.

After my first talk with Booker T, it all came together. Clearly RISE and ROW were two companies who desire to give the best possible learning and Live Event experience to developing Women Wrestlers. And both companies realize just how much can be won when two companies work in collaboration, not competition.

Over 20 women are signed up for the Seminar this Friday with Phoenix of RISE Mercedes Martinez, Saraya Knight, Jimmy Jacobs and me. I am so happy to see so many faces, many of those totally new to the RISE environment. There are many women wrestlers in Texas, and we have a focus in helping them learn and break out in 2019.

Several of those will receive opportunities Saturday as part of RISE 12 – ROW on The RISE.

This event is important for so many reasons.

Our first full scale event in Texas.

The start of another new partner promotion in ROW.

Kicking off the rebirth of RISE – ASCENT Episodes…more on that later…

And let’s not forget opportunity for at least one from the Seminar who will be brought to Chicago to be part of the huge RISE and SHIMMER Weekend March 29-31.

And on top of all that, we will have some major announcements that will likely make a fair amount of noise in the wrestling world, and I cannot wait to share them with our new fans and friends in Texas City, Texas near Houston THIS SATURDAY NIGHT!

Get ready to see what happens with Reality of Wrestling and RISE come together.

Get ready for ROW on The RISE!

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IMPACT Wrestling Hall of Famer and current Producer of the Knockouts Division for IMPACT Wrestling, the incomparable Gail Kim returns to RISE March 29 in Berwyn, IL. This time, Gail once again facilitates our World Class Development Seminar, one a bit different from other offerings of past RISE Seminars.

The RISE 13 World Class Development Seminar will be focused in performing on television and other video centric platforms. Gail will lead the charge in this Seminar, joined by RISE Producers and referees in testing performers in a mock television environment. Producers will prepare training matches with talents, actively produce training matches via headsets with referees and provide immediate, post-match feedback.

With more opportunities than ever in the world of wrestling in a televised environment and possibly more on the horizon, skills taught in this seminar will be crucial for talents to develop if they want to be prepared for the challenges such environments create.

Gail brings her wealth of experience to Berwyn, IL Friday, March 29. Women wrestlers, registration is now open at rise-wrestling.com/seminar.

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Early to RISE – A Women’s Wrestling Mini Convention comes to Berwyn, IL Friday, March 29 from 3 PM – 5:45 PM! This event will have a General Admission entry of $15. Tickets to Early to RISE go on sale later today at risedtwa.ticketleap.com.

Early to RISE will have a different floor plan than our prior Live Events, VIP Meet and Greets and Live Event Intermissions. Areas outside the rails surrounding our ring will be wide open (no chairs) to allow FAR more space than usual. This allows for talents to have more space for their merchandise and far, far more room for fans to navigate the area. Often at our Intermissions and Meet and Greets, the hardest parts to deal with are space and time, and we are making all efforts to give everyone far more of both!

Early to RISE will have a hard stop at 5:45 PM. We MUST clear the building of all fans in order for us to set up the remainder of the arena for the Live Event of RISE 13 – LEGENDARY. Doors open to ticket holders to RISE 13 at 7:30 PM.

We ARE hoping to add special VIP Options and Attractions, but we do not have confirmed details at this time. Should we finalize details, we will communicate any associated details, costs and ways to purchase at that time.

We hope to see many of you a bit earlier than usual March 29 at Early to RISE!

At press time, with opportunities we have left open in the RISE 13 – LEGENDARY Live Event card for The Prospective Talent Pool from the RISE 13 World Class Development Seminar with Madison Eagles and (TBA), 59 Women Wrestlers perform in our ring March. 

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As we get ready to kickoff 2019 in a BIG way with our friends at Reality of Wrestling in Houston, both sides wanted to make this experience for fans even BIGGER! We are adding even more matches for those who will be attending our VIP Meet and Greet prior to RISE 12 – ROW on The RISE.

In addition to the ringside group photo op with Women of RISE, Meet and Greet attendees will also be treated to a special taping of RISE – ASCENT, the RISE Episodic Platform streaming worldwide for subscribers of riseascent.com, RISE Apps on iOS and Android and twitch.tv/risedtwa. Attendees of the Meet and Greet will be treated to two bonus matches filmed for ASCENT!

Tickets and VIP Meet and Greet Passes are now on sale at realityofwrestling.com. Act fast, because Front Row is SOLD OUT and Second Row is nearly gone!

Join us for even MORE Women’s Independent Wrestling January 19, courtesy of RISE and Reality of Wrestling!

rise-final-012018 is in the books. It was one hell of a year for RISE. It was ambitious. Some, myself included, would argue it was overly ambitious. We’ve lived. We’ve learned. And we’ve moved on to fight another day.

2018 saw 5 Live Events: SENSATION, STEEL, OUTBACK, RISE of The Knockouts and INSANITY. We also saw 4 sets of ASCENT Tapings: Pittsburgh, Naperville, Orlando and Berwyn, producing 22 Episodes of original content. We also put out our first behind-the-scenes documentary IGNITION. 

When I look at that number – 28 pieces of original creative content ranging from 25 minutes to 3 hours, I am incredibly proud of what we have done as a company with virtually zero financial resources. That’s pride in every wrestler, referee, announcer, commentator, manager, camera operator, sound operator, graphic designer, video editor, producer, writer and partner promoter. 

That pride also includes two very important groups of people…

Seminar Attendees: To all who attended our World Class Development Seminars, RISE on the Road Seminars and Online Seminars – thank you! Investing in the development of upcoming generations of wrestling talent is the very backbone of why our program was founded. Though not everyone from every seminar can be selected for immediate opportunities to perform, I hope you all walked away from your time with us better for the business of professional wrestling, learning more about the craft and learning more about yourself.

Fans: Without you, none of us would have a reason to put on Live Events and to develop a worldwide pipeline of talent for all of professional wrestling. However you support, tickets, merchandise, subscriptions, Patreon… I cannot express enough gratitude that you choose to support RISE.

Many thanks to our partner promotions in 2018. Their teams helped us put on the best shows possible and reach new audiences. Thank you Dave Prazak and SHIMMER Women Athletes, Justin Plummer and IWC, Bart Kapitzke and AWS Promotions, Alex Pourteau and Pro Wrestling 2.0, Rossi Ogawa, Melissa Deadrich and Sonny Gutierrez and World Wonder Ring STARDOM and Ed Norholm, Scott D’Amore, Don Callis, Sonjay Dutt, Gail Kim, Ariel Shnerer and IMPACT Wrestling.

Thank you Jon Moody, Jesse Forney, West Ghost Designs and IMPACT Wrestling’s Digital Art team for upping our game with logos, event posters and match graphics. Without a doubt, things got kicked up a notch this year…except the ones that sucked (those were done by me, probably at like 3:45 AM…).

Thank you Mike Robles, Ivan Cespedes, Ben Coile, Eric Tompkins and James Long. Never underestimate the power of a good video crew! From Live Events to assembling ASCENT Episodes to graphic effects to video packages, these are the guys who make real magic happen in post production.

Thank you Josh Mathews, someone who has done so much for RISE this year, connecting us with needed resources, often in ways that were not public facing, but extremely helpful in advancing our brand.

Thank you Jimmy Jacobs. 20 years have passed since we first met. Our lives took different roads. I could not be happier those roads were able to intersect all these years later, bringing your creativity and passion for making wrestling a better place to all facets of RISE.

Thank you to those who facilitated World Class Development Seminars for us this year: Mercedes Martinez, Madusa, Gail Kim, Scott D’Amore, Jimmy Jacobs, Sonjay Dutt, Nicole Matthews, Saraya Knight, Rain, Cheerleader Melissa and Lexie Fyfe.

Thank you to those who facilitated Online Seminars in 2018: Lenny Leonard, Dave Prazak, Portia Perez and Madusa.

Thank you to all those who support me darn near every day. Sometimes that’s just being a good friend who’ll listen. Sometimes that’s wrangling me back to reality when I’m off the rails. Thanks for reality checking me when I’ve turned into “Pepe.” But most of all, thank you for putting up with any of my eccentricities because you believe in what RISE is trying to do. Thank you for believing in the good it can do. In no particular order, thank you Dave Prazak, Pat Creed, Stephane Bruyere, Saraya Knight, Allison Danger, Lexie Fyfe, Cheerleader Melissa, Portia Perez, Mercedes Martinez and Courtney Rush.

Thank you to those who worked so hard for RISE and have moved on to their new careers in WWE. I love you and miss you dearly Deonna Purrazzo, Chelsea Green and James Long. Three of the best at what they do, three who deserve every global opportunity and accolade they have coming their way.

Thank you to Cierra McCauley and her entire family for letting our team be part of spreading your message through #DancerBeatingCancer. I only hope the moment Cierra got to share with the talent and fans in Berwyn in April made her feel even half as special as we all did just getting the chance to meet her and thank her for her bravery and selflessness for her cause.

Last, and by obviously no means least, thank you to every woman (and a few of the boys) who have performed in the rings of RISE. I know I lean on you quite a bit on show days. And that’s A LOT more on show days (and pretty much every day in between) for those women within any remote proximity to The Phoenix of RISE or The Guardians of RISE Championships. You all are saints and deserve the universal, “Thank you for putting up with my shit.”

In addition to these many thanks, there is one final item I would like to address here as we wrap 2018.

Many fans are concerned that RISE is no longer focused on Developing Tomorrow’s Women Athletes. I absolutely understand where that perception comes from and appreciate fans’ concerns. But, I assure you, we have not lost this focus. We are making some pretty big moves in RISE 12 and RISE 13 to double down, to give as many opportunities to Seminar talents as possible.

In fact, I plan to discuss some of the details I know full well lead to these concerns from 2018 in full in the very first episode of The Process which will be recorded January 6 LIVE on Twitch with full interactive fan Q&A at 7 PM Eastern Time. This episode of The Process will focus specifically on the events leading into RISE 8 – OUTBACK, RISE 9 – RISE of The Knockouts and the RISE – ASCENT Naperville Tapings and how the company very nearly folded. How near was it? It was so very near that Episode 13 had an alternate ending on paper only I knew. That ending would have been instituted if it were, in fact, the last RISE Event produced. The decision to roll with the original event conclusion was not made until just before intermission the day of the Naperville Tapings.

Join us for The Process: Kicked Out at 2! at twitch.tv/risedtwa January 6 at 7 PM.

By the numbers…

3 of our girls made their debuts representing RISE in Japan. 3 others would have had it not been for injuries.

4 of our girls made their debuts with IMPACT Wrestling.

In our first 2 years, 148 Women have competed inside the rings of RISE. Of those 148, 97 were Seminar Discoveries. That’s 65.5%.

Since RISE 3, we’ve stated that we hope for our events to be as close to 1/3 Featured Talent, 1/3 a core RISE Roster cultivated from our Seminars and 1/3 Seminar Discoveries. 

Those are pretty damn solid numbers, showing the future is bright. RISE has been and always will be about mixing Today’s Best, Tomorrow’s Brightest. 

And we have an even bigger focus on Developing Tomorrow’s Women Athletes and giving them  more opportunities to shine than ever before.

It’s not a coincidence that RISE 12 only has 4 matches announced right now. The rest of the card will be filled from The Prospective Talent Pool combined with announced talent not currently in advertised matches.

RISE 13 has our first ever RISE of The Contender match will have 30 spots. It is my goal to have “at least” 10-15 of those spots occupied by new Seminar Discoveries and past Seminar Discoveries returning from the voting polls currently open at rise-wrestling.com/rotcvoting. Without going too far ahead and revealing plans…and possibly spoiling parts of RISE 12…as of this writing, there are 22 opportunities for new Seminar Discoveries and those voted to return by fans.

This is who we are.

This is what we do.

This is Developing Tomorrow’s Women Athletes.

This…

This is RISE!