Good to be bad: Wrestler relishes role as heel

By Richard Greene | Published Saturday, January 13, 2018
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Turning Heel 1

TURNING HEEL – In his first year of wrestling, Ryan Reed has embraced his bad guy persona as Ryan Remington. He and partner, Tommy Becker, will wrestle for the Metroplex Wrestling tag team championship Saturday. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Standing in the center of the wrestling ring, hearing the crowd shower him with boos and insults, Ryan Reed can’t hide his delight.

It’s the goal of the heel, such as Reed, AKA Ryan Remington, to work the crowd into a frenzy.

“As the bad guy, if you’re being booed, you’re doing something right,” Reed said.

The 2014 Boyd graduate and his partner, The Tommy Becker, who make up the Impact Players will wrestle for the Metroplex Wrestling tag team title Saturday against Down To Fight. The match is part of a two-hour show that starts at 8 p.m. at the arena in Bedford.

Reed, 21, grew up a wrestling fan. His mother, Amanda, recalls him wrestling on the trampoline as a child.

“It didn’t surprise us,” she said about her son’s recent career path. “He’s always loved it.”

After playing football and being a member of one-act play casts in high school, Reed went to college to study theatre. Last year, he decided to take a break from classes and a friend urged him look into the local wrestling association. He soon signed on and started training last February, learning the basics of becoming a wrestler.

“Wrestling is a big giant show. You’re out there to have fun. You’re not out there to try to hurt anybody,” Reed explained. “It’s live theatre. You’re learning how to do all these moves and take all these moves, run the ropes correctly and give promos even.”

While the sport is more live theatre than competition, the moves and the athleticism of the combatants in the ring are real. The contact is also very real.

“All the moves are real. I’m sore right now,” Reed said, explaining how he hit his head in training Wednesday.

“A couple of weeks ago, I took an elbow drop from a guy off the top rope. [His elbow] hit my chest, went up to my jaw and chipped three of my teeth.”

Injuries like that would leave some to question his sanity and why he would put himself through it. Reed provides a quick response.

“I absolutely love it,” Reed said. “I really enjoy it. It’s fun. I love doing different things. I don’t like a regular job. Going into wrestling, while I’m not making any money now, is just fun. I get to go out there and put on a show. I love entertaining people.

“When fans really get into it is the coolest part.”

In his short time in the sport, Reed has learned a lot of new moves. Among his top moves is the “bear hug power bomb” in which he picks up an opponent over his head and slams him to the mat.

His character, Ryan Remington, has become more and more over the top in the past year. He now enters the ring in a white jacket and his partner puts on a show removing the sunglasses from the 6-2, 260-pound wrestler. Their tagline, “we’re just so good,” draws boos from the crowd.

His mother’s initial reaction was to yell back at fans screaming at her son.

“But he told me as the heel, he wants them yelling at him,” she said. “When he does something good, you want to clap, but you can’t because he’s the bad guy.”

Reed admits it’s common knowledge that the outcome of a match is predetermined, but what takes place in the ring is up the wrestlers. The wrestlers don’t find out who is supposed to win a match until the night of the show.

“It’s like watching a TV show,” Reed said. “It’s written out in a script, but you still want to watch it because it’s your favorite TV show. There’s a bunch of storylines happening – it’s a giant soap opera.”

Along with wrestling with the Metroplex Wrestling Association, Reed plans to start hitting additional shows around the state on weekends.

“I want to get my name out there as much as I can,” Reed said. “I want to eventual wrestle out of state.”

He has dreams of making his way through the ranks and eventually to the WWE.

Anything is possible for the Impact Players, who fans hate because they are “so good.”

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