As a massive long-time Ring of Honor fan, I can say that one of my favourite heel runs was by the incredible Nigel McGuinness. Once he modified his persona and his in-ring style, he moved from simply being a “Pure Wrestling Champion” to somebody who could potentially rule the wrestling world.
If you haven’t had a chance to view his documentary yet, take a few minutes to do so here at The Last of McGuinness. The story of someone almost reaching their dream and failing to realize that dream due to no real fault of their own is something a lot of people can relate to. The fact that clinical depression probably had to do with how Nigel reacted to how his life turned out really hits home to me, as well (it’s certainly something that is widespread in professional wrestling, yet rarely talked about).
I’ll be honest…I didn’t contribute to Nigel’s first Kickstarter project. I was interested in his documentary, but I didn’t have the funds to donate much of anything to it. And being completely honest here, I thought the project would be backed by other people and I would be able to view the documentary once it became available on torrent sites (yeah, I know…I’m a douche).
When I heard about Nigel’s newest endeavor, LA Fights, I decided to actually watch his videos and read his words to find out more about the project.
Then I saw that Nigel’s documentary was available to watch for free on YouTube. After the kids had opened their gifts on Christmas morning and went off to their rooms, I spent 90 minutes watching his documentary. Because I wasn’t entirely sure about things and the holidays had pretty much tapped me out, I decided to donate one dollar. Primarily, I just wanted to stay updated on the project through video updates.
After a few hours, though, I received an email (yes…on Christmas Day!). The email was from Kickstarter but, more importantly, from Nigel McGuinness himself:
It’s Christmas day but I nonetheless wanted to take the time to personally thank you for backing the project. Really means a lot to me that at this time of year when spare money can be scarce you valued the project and me enough to get behind it. Every single dollar helps so thank you. If you can keep pushing it on social media throughout the funding process that’d be awesome. I’ll be doing everything I can to reward your support and make this a reality. Cheers again, you rock.”
Two things immediately happened once I read the email:
- I felt like shit for only donating one dollar.
- I felt like donating more because the person behind the project took the time to email me personally about a one dollar donation.
Think about that for a second. He took time on CHRISTMAS DAY to email some Canadian shlub for his shitty one dollar donation.
Yes, I realize the majority of the email was probably a copy/paste job that he sent to everybody who donated, but that didn’t matter to me. I immediately logged into my Kickstarter account and bumped my donation up to $20. I emailed him to let him know that I believed in him and his project, and didn’t think much of it again. Maybe I’d get another chain-email sent back to me.
Instead, I received this:
ZAH, that is so kind of you. I really appreciate it and only hope I can get this thing funded to reward your support and faith in me and the project.
Again…this was on Christmas Day.
So I’ve done what I can…I’m all about LA Fights and want to see something new and different and intriguing and intelligent as it pertains to professional wrestling. I don’t want to see talented performers relegated to ballroom dancers and having to slink into the couch embarrassed because my wife rolls her eyes at what I’m watching. I want to not only feel excited about the product, but be proud to say I’m a fan again.
I think Nigel’s got that potential product. And whether it’s $1 or $10,000, if you’re a fan of professional wrestling, you owe it to yourself to donate to this project to see if we can be proud of the industry again.