Wrestlers and fans brave the rain to support local start-up wrestling company
by Lucinda Perez
Alpha Omega Wrestling (AOW) delivered its debut event despite the cold and rainy weather on Saturday, Nov. 12 at the Palm Springs Stadium in Palm Springs. Because of its successful premiere event, the wrestling company already has dates set for future events.
Though the company’s organizers were worried the weather conditions could have affected fan turn out, but that was not the case. The event sold more than 160 tickets, selling out the entire ringside seating section. AOW’s first show featured popular Southern California wrestlers. However, it was the local talent; Chris Law, Darryl Adams and Damon Divine, all from the Coachella Valley, whom the fans in attendance wanted to see the most.
Darryl Adams, 22, a Palm Desert native, made his professional debut at Saturday’s event. “It was a real honor to be able to debut in my hometown and wrestle in front of my closest friends and family. I am very fortunate to have had the opportunity,” he said. Adams has wrestled as an amateur for seven years, and has trained professionally for two months.
The organization, run by some of its own wrestlers, has worked hard to promote the event across the Coachella Valley. The company ran commercials on local radio and television stations and also promoted the event online. “There’s a market for wrestling anywhere, really. It just depends on how you promote it,” said Damon Hoffman, one of the company’s founders. He and the other AOW organizers are optimistic they will establish a strong fan base in the Valley.
Hoffman, who wrestles under the name “The Nomad” Damon Divine, also works for a top wrestling promotion, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. “It all started while disturbing the peace one night,” says Hoffman, on how AOW got its start. Someone had called the sheriff to complain about Hoffman and a few others, who were training at a friends house. It was then that he and his friends decided to form their own wrestling promotion group. Though the promotion is utilizing many professional wrestlers from Southern California, the company is based in Palm Springs, where Hoffman and the other organizers are located. “This is our home,” says Hoffman. “We have some big goals going forward.”
In addition to growing the promotion across the Valley, AOW organizers hope to expand into the rest of Southern California and to secure a local television contract. The promotion also hopes to sponsor local charities in the future, in order to give back to the community. AOW’s next scheduled event is on Saturday, Dec. 10, at the Palm Desert YMCA.