To all, there comes a time when the support structures that you’ve long held, which assist you in whatever your chosen endeavor might be, are taken away. Times when you have to learn to dig deeper than ever before to be able to stand on your own. After all, your parents are not going to hold your hand forever to keep you from falling down. Neither will your coach.
This past Saturday night at FCF Wrestling’s Wrestling Show Live: December Rumble in Helsinki, such an example took place in the battle of Finland vs. Russia, where my protégé Mikko Maestro took on Ivan “Locomotive” Markov in one of the marquee match-ups.
Prior to the match, Maestro had implored me to step into his corner and coach him through this, the biggest match of his five-year professional wrestling career. Maestro had long been on his own, after I took him on as my personal pet project in early 2013, and he had done pretty well for himself, especially after catching fire this year. Maestro has been on a roll since defeating “Wildman” Heimo Ukonselkä at FCF’s premiere annual supershow, Talvisota X (Winter War 10) this past March. Maestro stood strong in his battles with the likes of Swedish wrestling champion Harley Rage and even managed to defeat Dutch wrestling champion Mark Kodiak on Finnish soil in September this year.
Yet, as December 10, 2016 inched ever closer, Mikko Maestro understood he was up against something that he wasn’t sure he was ready for. So he enlisted his former coach, Yours Truly, to help prep him and coach him through the match he would have against Ivan Markov at WSL: December Rumble. After all, I am the man that defeated Markov in the first-ever pro wrestling match-up between Finland and Russia, which took place last year, so who better to approach for advice than myself?
I accepted, with one condition and one condition only. This was that Maestro leave behind his ridiculous stinkface spot, which serves absolutely no purpose other than to get a rise out of the audience when he smothers his backside into an opponents face in the ring corner. Me personally, I find this spot to be stupid beyond description and totally unnecessary, especially when it comes to winning matches and staying alive in the heat of battle against a verifiable killer like Ivan Markov.
Well, in their ensuing match this past Saturday night in Helsinki, Mikko Maestro went against our set agreement, and at the opportune time, he did his stinkface anyway. He simply couldn’t be without it, and he let the audience get to his head. He wanted to play superstar and he went into business for himself.
This ended up costing Mikko Maestro dearly. I grabbed his foot to get his attention at ringside, scolding him for the disrespect that he showed me, as his coach, by doing exactly the thing that we had agreed that he would not do. This was his death knell. Ivan Markov capitalized and blasted Maestro with a scintillating discus forearm blow that knocked his Finnish opposition for damn near into dreamland. One powerbomb later, Russia scored the decisive victory.
I stepped into the ring and contemplated what had just happened. Of course, the people and even Maestro himself would blame me for the downfall. That is what victims do. They victimize themselves. Me personally, I see this as an action and a direct consequence. Every action bares a consequence, and Mikko Maestro’s disobedience cost him the match. Simply put, he didn’t deserve to win. Had he listened and abided by the game plan, we very well might have had a different outcome. But Mikko Maestro has to look into the mirror this time and see the truth for himself.
Maestro is on his own. He errantly challenged me in his over-exuberance to a match earlier this year, after defeating Holland’s brutish Mark Kodiak. He can blame it on the heat of the moment or what have you, it doesn’t matter. The bottom line is, he got my attention.
He wants to see if he can defeat his mentor and coach. I understand that, it’s part of the development of every young lion. But this time, Maestro is going to come to understand that he is still not ready to make good against a tried and true veteran like myself, because simply… he is not good enough yet.
Talvisota XI on February 18, 2017 at the Nosturi club in Helsinki will be the day when Mikko Maestro has his date with destiny.
Start counting down the time…