Otto Price stands centered on the screen before the familiar Classic Wrestling banner, a friendly look on his face.
“Folks, we are just over a week away from SLAM-A-THON! With tickets sold out, we are urging you to order it on Pay-Per-View! It will be a night jam packed with top tier matches between the greatest competitors in our sport, and the main event will feature the crowning of our first Real World’s Champion! With me right now, one of the two finalists in the tournament to crown the Real World’s Champion, “All Business” Alex Bruder.”
The camera pans to the side, and now Alex Bruder is seen standing next to Otto, in his off the clock wardrobe of a too tight black t-shirt, dark jeans and hiking boots.
“Alex Bruder, you are going face to face with Rush Starling, a relative newcomer to the sport, but a man with three very impressive victories in Classic Wrestling already. How are you preparing to face off against him?”
Bruder holds his right hand out and motions for Otto to bring the stylish thin microphone closer in. As before, he speaks low and slow, letting his words sink in.
“He’s had a nice run, Otto. He beat Lord Colossus, and there ain’t a word in that name a lie. But Lord Colossus wasn’t the only big man in this tournament. “Metro” beat King Kong Frank. The Saint took out Yama, nearly five hundred pounds. Giant killers, the both of them. But they couldn’t get past me. I want Rush to think about that.”
“I want him to think about all of his strengths. He’s got the vitality of youth. But I’ve got the wisdom of experience.”
“The kid hasn’t racked up years of injuries in the ring, so he can take a beating. Lucky for him, a beating is just what I’ve got planned for him.”
“Rush, the one thing you have that I don’t have a counter for is the crowd. They love you. They’ll cheer for you. They’ll stomp their feet for you. They’d give you their very breath, if they could.”
He pauses, and reiterates.
His eyes narrow, and Alex points into the camera, raising his voice and speeding up a hair.
“But they can’t, Rush. You’ll be standing surrounded by a crowd of thousands, and still be utterly alone. I’m going to break you down, piece by piece, until that voice inside of your head that tells you to do your best, tells you that you have done your best. When the part that says ‘never give up’ changes its tune to ‘never give up…again’.”
“When I’ve got you locked in the Cobra Clutch in the middle of the ring, the only two men who can impact the outcome are me and you, and with the Real World’s Championship on the line, you’ll find I’m not in much of an accommodating mood.”
Alex looks down, calms himself down, and stares at the camera.
“The Real World’s Championship is everything I’ve been fighting for. Not for the glory, or the prestige, or the honor. Honor doesn’t pay for a life of luxury when I’m done fighting. It means main events, and championship fight purses, and filling up my bank account faster than I’d ever dreamed possible. Maybe some of the people here love getting punched in the face and tossed out of the ring; I’m not here to judge. Me, I’m just like any guy clocking in to his job at the factory, except that at a factory, mangled bodies are a cause for alarm, and here it’s the goal of the enterprise. I make the same trade everybody else does, my time and my body for cold hard cash. But Rush, I’m willing to trade your body for it too.”
“On August 8th, in the main event of SLAM-A-THON, when I’m crowned the Real World’s Champion, it will be my finest moment. And one day, a quarter century from now, when your son tells you he wants to get in the family business and be a professional wrestler as well, you’ll admit that coming up short against me was your finest moment too.”
With that Alex cracks a smile and walks off screen.
Otto, still enthused if slightly alarmed, addresses the camera again. “Strong words from “All Business” Alex Bruder. There’s only one way to see if they ring true. Call your cable company and order Classic Wrestling’s SLAM-A-THON today!”