At our last show, Tommy Dreamer’s Hardcore Halloween, it might have been OCW Heavyweight Champion, Andy Phoenix, who left with the title still around his waist after a hard-fought ladder match, but it was his opponent’s name that was on everyone’s lips: Adam “Brooksy” Brooks.
Known for being loose all over Victoria and the rest of Australia, Brooks had originally been on the other side of the OCW ring supporting his partner Kellyanne (then known as Nakita Naridian) from the crowd before curiosity got the better of him and he made his OCW debut in June. Prior to that, the young upstart had been honing his craft for the better part of five years after being trained by “best friend and mentor” Matt Silva, perhaps better known as Buddy Murphy on NXT. “Murphy’s Law” would indicate that Brooks’ has a bright future ahead of him should he choose to join the fellow Aussie in the U.S. big leagues. In the meantime, we can catch Brooks on local TV on Channel 31 at 9:30 on Tuesday nights, or online as OCW’s back catalogue of episodes have recently been added to this here website.
But back to two weeks ago at Hardcore Halloween, the prior stipulation matches on the card certainly raised the bar for what OCW fans could expect from the main event, and Phoenix and Brooks didn’t disappoint. When asked how he was feeling in the aftermath of his ladder match, Brooks said, “Body-wise, I felt fine. Obviously, I was disappointed I didn't win the championship but your adrenaline is pumping and you’re all pumped up: that’s the good feeling. It’s when that adrenaline stops is when you feel the little aches, stiffness, etc. Usually getting out of bed the next day is when you really feel it.”
Mentally, though, it can’t be easy to get into a ladder match state of mind. An insight to the inner machinations of a wrestler’s psyche reveals this:
“It's always hard preparing for a match like that when you know you’re going to get hurt out there.” Pro wrestling might not be everyone’s cup of tea “but ladders hurt and falling off them, through them, anything involving them really doesn't feel good.”
Further to that, Brooks says, “Nowadays I just try to relax and be calm. Lots of wrestlers may jump around or scream to pump themselves up but lately I've taken the calm approach.” When he first started wrestling, Brooks “used to put so much pressure on myself in big matches like that where as now I just relax calm down go out there have fun and give my all for the fans.” He may only be 23, but it sounds like Brooks already has the mindset of a veteran.
There’s no rest for the wicked, as a typical weekend of wrestling in Melbourne consists of multiple promotions showcasing their best talent—some of which is also OCW’s best talent—across the far-reaching metropolitan area. After one such weekend, Brooksy says, it’s back to training during the week “so I'm constantly getting around with little aches but if you love wrestling and if you've been doing it for years your body gets used to it. There are times when you’re feeling really beat up but you just carry on and put up with it, after almost five years my body feels pretty good.”
We’ve all heard the horror stories of guys like Mick Foley, Stone Cold Steve Austin and Edge, who sacrificed their bodies for the craft and are now worse for wear in their later years. Brooksy doesn’t seem too worried about it, though. He says, “Certainly our bodies aren’t meant to be beat up and abused like they are…” As the Hardy Boyz’ catchphrase would attest, live for the moment, I guess.
So after two unsuccessful title shots against the preternatural champion Phoenix, in what direction can we see Brooks heading in the New Year? Without giving too much away, Brooks says he “can see some very interesting developments ahead in OCW. After my [ladder] match I was approached by another high profile wrestler who hasn't had much luck when it comes to big matches.” Could we see Brooksy and this mystery partner in play for the shiny new toys on the playground, the OCW tag team titles? “Maybe if we have each others back success might come our way.”
Are you looking forward to what 2015 has in store for one of OCW’s brightest young stars, Adam Brooks? Tell us your thoughts in the comments, on Facebook or Twitter.