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In Photos: WWE Superstars Help Raise Funds for Newark

Former wrestling stars body slam to benefit Newark Memorial High School's athletics department and superstar Bobby Lashley talks about the importance of independent wrestling.

The Super-Plex, Twist of Fate, and sudden Spears all were maneuvers dished out at the Newark Memorial High School Event Center by wrestling legends who came to town to support the high school on Saturday.

Longtime industry veteran Kirk White and his independent wrestling agency Big Time Wrestling held its BTW SuperShow 2012, in which attendees had the opportunity to get signatures and meet former World Wrestling Entertainment Superstars: "The Masterpiece" Chris Masters, Daivari, Bobby Lashley, and former one-half WWE Tag Team Champion Matt Hardy.       

Dozens lined up before 6 p.m. to experience the "meet & greet" before the show's 7:30 PM starting bell time. Tables were lined with merchandise and spots for each wrestler to set up for signatures.

Once the doors flew open, anxious fans filed in to meet the four former-WWE stars of the evening. There was a buzz in the pavilion and fans were in a festive mood as event goers got their one-on-one time with the superstars.         

"Just out for fun!" Tracy resident Greg Shrout said about his family trip out for the evening's festivities. "What better night? And the price!" Shrout said. Tickets for the event ranged between $7 and $20.    

A Show Full of Entertainment – and Charity

When the first bell rang for the evening, hundreds were seated in the center’s bleachers and floor seats.

And while marquee names were in the building, the event, which was initially solely a fundraiser for the 's athletic department, evolved into a joint "memorial show" with a portion for donations going toward the family of slain Newark student Osana Futi.

Futi, who was a star football player at , was killed in late April after he was stabbed a Fremont house party. A was held for the 18-year-old football star Friday. His body will be transported to American Samoa, where his mother resides, later this week.

An auction was also held and proceeds will benefit the Newark Unified School District's athletic department.

The atmosphere was electric, engulfed in boos and cheers, "ooh!"s and "ahh!"s, fans taunting and high-fiving. Children were running around trying to get high-fives from the talent as they entered and exited the stage, and the large audience marveled at the wrestlers as they wrestled.

Why One WWE Superstar Supports Independent Wrestling Shows

Events like BTW's Supershow often feature matches that involve experienced talent who have performed at pinnacle of sports entertainment like World Wrestling Entertainment.

Lashley, a former WWE United States and ECW Champion, stresses the importance of the independent wrestling circuit.

 "There's so many guys in the locker room there and there's so many guys that are all over the place, man, learning this craft that we know of wrestling, and that want to go out there and perform," said Lashley, a 35-year-old amateur wrestler who turned instant WWE superstar. "And if we don't support these independent wrestling shows, man, these people will not have a place to go and display their craft."   

Lashley was once billionaire Donald Trump's personal choice to represent him in the ring versus "The Samoan Bulldozer" the late Umaga, who was WWE Chairman Vince McMahon's personal selection headed into WWE's blockbuster annual event, Wrestlemania 23, April 1, 2007.

Dubbed "The Battle of the Billionaires," the match's must-see stipulation was that if Lashley lost the match, Trump would have to shave his iconic head of hair. The same went for McMahon if Umaga lost. Lashley ultimately reigned supreme that evening, creating a media frenzy defending Trump's maine.

Lashley said while he started his professional wrestling career by heading straight into WWE, it was not a quick achievement.

“I was an amateur wrestler and I wrestled for several years so I still paid my dues with amateur wrestling for 20 years before getting into the pro wrestling. … [WWE] saw me. They thought that I had a good look, which I do!” Lashley said, with a playful laugh.

Though Lashley was a longtime WWE superstar, he said he is excited to participate in independent shows and plans to continue doing so.

"If [independent wrestling groups] need a little boost and bring in some names so be it," said Lashley. "I think it's a great idea, an awesome opportunity, and I’m going to try to do as many [independent shows] as I can."                  

Results for Big Time Wrestling SuperShow May 12, 2012 (in chronological order):

  1. Victor Sterling & L'Empereur def. Tony Vargas & The Assassin.
  2. Davina Rose def. Cheerleader Melissa.       
  3. Jason Styles def. Syn.       
  4. The Ballards def. Aaron Solo & Shane Kody (c) to become new BTW Tag Team Champions.                 
  5. Daivari def. Kimo (c) to become new BTW Cruiserweight Champion.                 
  6. RVK (c) def. Matt Hardy to retain BTW Championship (referee reversed decision after disqualifying Hardy for the supposed use of a foreign object, brass knuckles).  
  7. Bobby Lashley def. Chris Masters.

 Have photos from the Supershow? Add them to our gallery above.

Peter Merchant May 15, 2012 at 10:32 AM
Thats very good to hear! The toughest people are raising funds for charity! I wanted to do my contribution by buying WWE wrestling tickets from the best source http://www.goodseattickets.com
Kathy August 18, 2012 at 01:27 PM
We did the same thing! we purchased our from http://www.ticketprocess.com, we have a group of 30 that went on a bus trip.

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