TNA Wrestling comes to ShoWare

Pro wrestler A. J. Styles

Pro wrestler A. J. Styles

Kent residents can choose to be exposed to a whole different type of entertainment when Total Nonstop Action Wrestling makes its debut at the ShoWare Center.

Jeff Jarrett, AJ Styles, Angelina Love and Taylor Wilde will be among the 18 men and women professional wrestlers appearing at 7 p.m. June 4 as part of the touring version of the weekly TNA show every Thursday night on SpikeTV.

TNA Wrestling, based in Orlando, Fla., is the second-largest wrestling promotion in the world behind its rival, World Wrestling Entertainment. This marks just the second year that TNA wrestlers have performed on the road rather than just for television or at certain select sites.

“We’re so young in touring that we’re looking for new places to go,” said Chris Thomas, the promoter for TNA Wrestling, in a phone interview Thursday from Nashville, Tenn. “Last year, we went to 60-plus cities. This year, we have 70-plus dates. This is our first time in the Pacific Northwest.”

Jeff Jarrett founded the company with his father Jerry Jarrett in 2002. Jeff Jarrett is vice president of the company and is a former World Wrestling Federation performer.

Tag-team matches as well as individual bouts will be part of the entertainment in Kent.

Jeff Jarrett is one of the few wrestlers who goes by his real name rather than a stage name.

Styles, whose real name is Allen Jones, is the TNA Legends Champion. He was the first to complete the TNA Triple Crown championship by winning the X Division, World Tag Team and World Heavyweight titles.

The tour also features Love and Wilde, two Canadian women who have become top performers. Love, also known as Lauren Williams, is the reigning TNA Knockout Champion. Wilde, whose real name is Shantelle Malawski, formerly held the Knockout Champion title.

All of the wrestlers coming to Kent are on the TNA Superstar roster.

“They will all be on TV in the two weeks leading up to a show, generally,” Thomas said.

None of the professional wrestlers appearing in Kent are from the Pacific Northwest or even the West Coast.

“The closest one we have to you is from Minnesota,” Thomas said.

In addition to watching pro wrestling up close, fans at ShoWare will be able to get in the ring and shake hands with many of the wrestlers at the end of the show.

“We offer a different product than our competitor,” Thomas said about the meet-and-greet session. “It’s our way to give back to the fans because the fans have been fantastic to us.”

While the TNA show on SpikeTV reaches out to men ages 18 to 34, the live shows attract a variety of ages.

“Sometimes, it’s 35 to 40 percent kids,” Thomas said. “Little girls love some of our big, scary wrestlers.”

Wrestlers compete in a hexagonal ring rather than a four-sided ring.

“The action is faster and there are more ropes and more things to bounce off of,” Thomas said. “And we are known for our fast action.”

The other Northwest stops on the tour are Nampa, Idaho and Kennewick. After Kent, the wrestlers head up to Abbottsford and Pentiction, British Columbia.


  • What: Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
  • When: 7 p.m. June 4
  • Where: ShoWare Center
  • Cost: $52, $37, $22
  • Tickets: Available online or by phone 877-840-0457

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