by Daniel Johnson
Interviewer’s Note: Vintage Dragon is a wrestler based in California who currently works for a slew of promotions including the Empire Wrestling Federation, one of the oldest successful independent promotions still kicking. Dragon got his start at Luchapro (LLA) before working for the EWF where in 2012 he would win the EWF Tag Team Championship with partner Cyanide as the team, The Von Dooms. On October 4 Dragon will be working for the EWF and on October 19 he will be wrestling at VERSUS, a joint show between Apex Pro (AP) and Vendetta Pro (VP). This interview was completed on September 14, 2013. In this interview Dragon and I focus on the topic of wrestling for the EWF
Daniel Johnson: In a nutshell how would you describe yourself as a performer?
Vintage Dragon: A hybrid luchador with intensity. If that makes sense.
Daniel Johnson: Sounds good, for those unfamiliar with you where and when were you born and how long have you been wrestling?
Vintage Dragon: I was born in Leon, Nicaragua on August 9, I prefer not to put the year, and I’m just shy of six years in the business.
Daniel Johnson: When you knew you wanted to become a wrestler how did you go about finding a place to get trained?
Vintage Dragon: Actually, I wanted to become a pro wrestler ever since I was four, but it was a friend who approached me with a lucha libre training flyer. So I called them up, asked what I needed to do and I was in my first training class a week later.
Daniel Johnson: Who was your primary trainer and what was a typical day of training like for you?
Vintage Dragon: Sad part is, there was no primary trainer, just a bunch of guys taking turns. Well the first day of training was hard and I couldn’t move the next day, however It was really hard to learn due to the fact that even as a green trainee I knew these guys weren’t teachers. I couldn’t make sense of anything they taught and it was like this for three days a week for two weeks. So I asked around and that is when I met The Chivos and was introduced to Black Metal. After which Black Metal took me under his wing and trained me intensely for two to three days a week. After having Metal as a teacher it was a complete 180 from my previous “trainers.”
Daniel Johnson: What was the first company you worked for and do you still wrestle there at all?
Vintage Dragon: The first company I wrestled for was Luchapro(or LLA) in May of 2008 and I wrestled for them on a weekly basis for three years. I have not worked for Luchapro since September of 2011.
Daniel Johnson: How did you first get involved wrestling for the Empire Wrestling Federation?
Vintage Dragon: After deciding that I was ready, Black Metal introduced me to Jesse Hernandez and I made my EWF debut in January of 2009.
Daniel Johnson: Do you consider EWF your home promotion? If not then what do you consider your current home promotion to be?
Vintage Dragon: Luchapro was my home promotion, but after a while I realized that i needed to grow more and couldn’t do that with my wings tied so I’ve ventured out and have worked for many great promotions and still do so I guess I don’t have a home promotion, but if i did it would definitely be the EWF.
Daniel Johnson: As you mentioned you first wrestled for EWF in 2009. What memories stand out to you from this fairly early part of your career?
Vintage Dragon: Jeremy Jeager, Roger Ruiz and Chris Kadillak. It’s always hard coming into a new promotion when you don’t know anybody but these three guys made me feel like I’ve been here the whole time. I had a great debut match against “Top Shelf” Jeremy Jeager for the EWF Cruiserweight title in which I lost, but until this day that match stands out as one of my favorites.
Daniel Johnson: Do you feel you have grown as a performer since this time? If so then how?
Vintage Dragon: I feel I’ve grown immensely since then. I’ve smartened up to the business so much form every aspect. From training to eating better, I wrestle a lot smarter now and I’m always learning what I can whether its in a match or the production side of it. My goal is to better myself every time.
Daniel Johnson: You previously held half of the EWF Tag Team Championship with Cyanide as The Von Dooms. How did this team first come about?
Vintage Dragon: Well, we actually lost the titles to The Fallen Empire, Ryan Taylor and Mondo Vega, back in June. When I met Black Metal I also met Cyanide. We trained together for months and Metal suggested we team together. We took his advice and teamed for the first time in October of 2008.
Daniel Johnson: Have you been in any other tag teams? Do you feel Cyanide works the best with you as a partner out of the wrestlers you have tagged with?
Vintage Dragon: Nope, Cyanide is my first. I’ve tagged with many talented individuals, but Cyanide and I just mesh well and understand each others strengths and weaknesses and more importantly we’re friends outside of wrestling and there were times I was very thankful to have him watching my back. I doubt I will ever have another tag team partner. “Doom or Die.”
Daniel Johnson: What was your most memorable match during your tag title reign?
Vintage Dragon: I guess it would be at the end of our reign. That match with The Fallen Empire proved that team wrestling is still alive and more than that when we won the titles, we felt accomplished, but when we lost the titles to the F.E. we felt the hunger for more which has made The Von Dooms a more determined and credible tag team.
Daniel Johnson: What other championships have you held and how does the EWF Tag Team Championship compare?
Vintage Dragon: I’ve held one singles championship for PWM [Pro Wrestling Massive]. Along with Cyanide we’ve held six tag team titles. Three at Luchapro, we were the first ever FSW Tag Team Champions [Future Stars of Wrestling] and we held those titles twice and of course we are the former EWF tag team champions. Honestly, you can’t compare any of these to an EWF championship. The respect and sense of self accomplishment and honor to represent such a promotion is a privilege.
Daniel Johnson: Do you consider this reign to be the highlight of your career so far? If not then what is?
Vintage Dragon: Yes I do. The credibility that comes with calling yourself an EWF champion is an amazing feeling.
Daniel Johnson: What would you like to accomplish next in EWF?
Vintage Dragon: I definitely have my eyes set on the EWF American Championship.
Daniel Johnson: For fans unfamiliar with EWF what would you tell them that might convince them to give the company a try?
Vintage Dragon: Its for every wrestling fan, it’s old school, lucha libre high flying, in your face action. Strong style and definitely a promotion that involves its loyal fans.
Daniel Johnson: Outside of EWF what other companies do you most like to work for?
Vintage Dragon: Vendetta Pro, Apex Pro, Fighting Spirit [FS] and Brian Kendrick’s Wrestling Pro Wrestling [WPW].
Daniel Johnson: Are there any companies you have yet to work for that you would like to? If so then where?
Vintage Dragon: SoCal Pro [SP], would have loved to work for New Wave [NWPW]. CHIKARA branch offs the “Wrestling Is” family. APW.
Daniel Johnson: I also like to ask five brief non-wrestling related questions in each interview to make interviews a little different. My first of these five questions is what TV shows do you currently enjoy watching on television?
Vintage Dragon: The Walking Dead, Criminal Minds, House and The Big Bang Theory,
Daniel Johnson: What was your favorite movie that came out this year?
Vintage Dragon: World War Z.
Daniel Johnson: What is your favorite food that you tried for the first time this year?
Vintage Dragon: Indian food.
Daniel Johnson: Anything in particular?
Vintage Dragon: Lamb kabobs are amazing.
Daniel Johnson: Cool, what is your favorite song to come out this year?
Vintage Dragon: I don’t have a favorite song and the reason for that is that music has been dead for 10 years. Don’t get me wrong I love some songs that have come out but as far as this year. Its been awful.
Daniel Johnson: What was the last book you read and would you recommend it?
Vintage Dragon: Homer’s The Iliad. I’m a sucker for Greek mythology. And yes I would. Great read for Greek fans.
Daniel Johnson: Awesome, I then just had a few more brief wrestling questions. Who is one wrestler 25 or younger that you think readers should know about?
Vintage Dragon: Terra Calway.
Daniel Johnson: I always like to hear about road stories and ribs. Do you have any that you would be able to share?
Vintage Dragon: Simple and short story. Terra and I drove up to Reno for a show and there was a friend with us who kept falling asleep in the back and refused to buckle up so i waited until he dozed off and every time I’d slam on the brakes the poor bastard would eat it every time. Moral of the story don’t ever trust a wrestler on the road.
Daniel Johnson: Haha, what is the weirdest part of being a pro wrestler?
Vintage Dragon: There isn’t! You get to do everything you wanted to when you were a kid. Difference is now we get to do it in front of a crowd.
Daniel Johnson: Is there anything you would like to promote?
Vintage Dragon: On October 4 the EWF returns to Covina and The Von Dooms challenge The Fallen Empire for the EWF Tag Team titles in a ladder match. Also on October 19 Apex Pro and Vendetta Pro present VERSUS. A friendly competition between two companies to show that there are still promoters and promotions willing to work together without personal gain.
Daniel Johnson: Is there anything you would like to add?
Vintage Dragon: Not at the moment.
Check out Vintage Dragon in action! In this contest from the EWF he takes on Brandon Gatson in a main event match:
Categories: Wrestling Interviews