Deadlock Pro is the federation that was created online with fans in mind.
Johnny Blud is the host of New Legacy Inc, a channel that does comedy commentary over wrestling video games. Chris Denker is another comedic commentator that plays wrestling games on DenkOps. Both men bleed and sweat wrestling culture and have hustled their way to YouTube/Twitch fame. I never expected them to be working in a brand new internet wrestling group called Deadlock Pro Wrestling.
November 2021 was the birth of an ambitious wrestling federation, Deadlock Pro, that uses equal parts Patreon and YouTube to give wrestling fans some amazing content. John Blud, James Darnell, and, Anthony Douglass created this promotion with all the excitement of a Comic-Con in Los Angeles. They air their regular shows Fire and Spark for free, but you can get Deadlock Pro on demand for $14.99 a month.
The amazing part is that the production values of this humble promotion are far better than a majority of spit-in-the-pan companies you would find on IWTV or High Spots Wrestling. With no shaky cameras, poor resolution, junk lighting, and terrible sound equipment, the founders used their expertise to make the ring look good. Twitch and YouTube experience is definitely a plus.
The network of wrestlers that have performed on the shows is a cornucopia of big indie names. Calvin Tankman, Rosemary, Kidd Bandit, Andrew Everett, Sumie Sukai, SB Kento, and Emi Sakura are just a few regular attendees. Their first internet PPV was called You Already Know which had Bojack defeat Andrew Everett to become the first Deadlock Pro worlds champion. Since then Emi Sakura, Calvin Tankman, and Lucky Ali have won belts in the organization.
One thing I cannot stress enough is commentator quality. John Blud has an infectious voice that is one part “cray cray frat king” and one part “wrestling smooth talker.” He is one of the most enjoyable people to listen to. Rich Bocchini and Joe Dombrowski have recently replaced them. The whole show has an “Owned by the Bullet Club” vibe to it as the wrestlers and the commentary talk like they are discussing their favorite dank memes.
I am surprised that it took the internet this long to get something that feels so “owned by the internet community.” There are a lot of indie promotions that pop out of Texas, Florida, and New Hampshire that are backed by well-meaning business owners that got their hands on a YouTube channel, but none of them feel as organic as Deadlock Pro.
The internet is looking at content creators as the new mega-rich celebrities. Even Logan Paul can brag that he got a main event with the biggest name in wrestling. Maybe if I put myself enough times on YouTube I can finally book a match between Hulk Hogan and Orange Cassidy.
You owe it to yourself to check out the free episodes on DPW. It does not hold back on quality or quantity. It is a young start-up, full of potential, and on a much better track than a lot of shaky cam promotions. I will probably never touch the $14.99 a month content with a ten-foot pole (I spend $25 a year on Peacock TV), but I encourage all indie lovers to make this promotion big.