Posts Tagged ‘Talvisota XII’

Here at the end of 2017 as the New Year is about to turn a new page for all of us, I reflect back on what the past 12 months have meant for me personally and professionally.

I have to say from the bottom of my heart that this past year has been one of the best overall years for me on record, especially in terms of my professional wrestling career and movie actor ambitions.  I once stated that if I could do with my life what I dare dream, it would be to become a world-traveled professional wrestler, a touring rock artist and a movie actor.  Here, at the age of 44, I have achieved all of those things and more.  That is certainly something to be proud of, and I can only look to make the good things in life prosper and grow in the fact of each new challenge as life rolls on.

2017 saw me claim my 21st country in pro wrestling, that being Pakistan, this past May.  Pakistan is about as exotic as a location as it gets, and the treatment we got from the local PWE promoters was top-notch.  Five-star hotels, bodyguards and even a presidential suite were all in the offering, as we were treated like royalty by fans and organizers alike.  I was the only wrestler on the international roster out of the Nordics.

StarBuck with Syed Asim Ali Asmi PWE

With the big boss of PWE in Pakistan!

StarBuck vs. Bambikiller in Pakistan

Getting the upper hand on Chris “Bambikiller” Raaber in Lahore, Pakistan

My long-awaited autobiography, Battleground Valhalla, also came out in May through Crowbar Press in the USA, a highly-esteemed publisher of wrestling autobiographies, whose earlier releases include Donnie Fargo, Ole Anderson and Stand Hansen to name a few.  My book has sold great to this date, as I’ve even mailed out a ton of signed copies to folks far and wide who’ve asked for personalized copies.  My story also got released through Kindle on Amazon as a digital e-book, which was icing on the cake!

2017 was the year that I was named the inaugural Valhalla Nordic Wrestling Champion by ’80s pop sensation Samantha Fox and STHLM Wrestling out of Sweden.  After being lauded the honor of interim champion in (again) May, I went on to defeat a very capable up-and-coming young star in Timmy Force on July 8 in Stockholm to become the undisputed, first Valhalla Nordic champ.  This match was highly-praised by one of the heads of WWE, who was on hand, front-and-center ringside to witness this 30-minute classic that will go down as quite possibly the greatest match to date on Swedish soil.

StarBuck vs Timmy Force VALHALLA Nordic Championship 6

Timmy Force falls to my world-famous finisher, the jumping spike piledriver in Stockholm (photo: Fredrik Streiffert)

2017 was the year that I ventured into the studio with my reformed Stoner Kings band, recording new material after a decade of absence.  We even filmed the first-ever music video we ever did with the band for a single called Cro-Magnon, which was a very proud moment for me as the founder of Stoner Kings.

2017 was the year that I took three unprecedented vacations, something I had never done in that number per annum, in Morocco, Romania’s mountains, Spain and Thailand.  Thanks to my wife, Diana, for arranging these trips, as she’s quite the tour organizer and could easily be a commercial tour guide if she chose to do so.

2017 was also the year that I captured my fifth Finnish wrestling championship.  On December 2 in Helsinki at Finland’s biggest annual pro wrestling spectacular, Talvisota XII, I unseated Juhana “King Kong” Karhula in a 25+ minute mat classic, becoming a double-champion this year.

StarBuck FCF Champion 2017

StarBuck – FCF champion for the fifth time, December 2017 (photo: Marko Simonen)

2017 also saw me featured in two ground-breaking movie releases: It Came From The Desert and Rendel.  Both films have been sold worldwide now and have been dubbed in multiple, foreign languages like Japanese, German and Spanish.  My roles in both movies were incredibly intriguing and important characters, both of which for I was able to channel my vast pro wrestling experience into.

StarBuck in Rendel

My Russian mercenary character in Rendel has arguably the best fight scene in the whole movie

All in all, I can only be thankful for the awesome year that was 2017.  Even as a personal trainer and voice-over speaker, I accumulated several new clients and commissions.  As a graphic artist, several customers utilized my talents as a traditional illustrator.  With my voice, I was able to parlay my talents as a guest ring announcer at various boxing events, in front of new audiences.

Värityskirja kansi Vesileppis

The cover of a children’s coloring book for Vesileppis Sport & Spa hotel in Finland, featuring Yours Truly as the human lead.

I have said that for some unexplained, divine reason, particularly good things happen to me in seven year installments.  This year was one such waypoint.  My previous seven year boon was in 2010, when I debuted as a professional wrestler in Japan – my career goal – where I became a star on the national stage overnight.  Seven years prior to that in 2003, I started the entire professional wrestling phenomenon in Finland, bringing the fighting art form to this neck of the Nordics and teaching it to the very first class of Finnish students in history.  Seven years before that, in 1996, I moved to Finland from my homeland of Canada to begin rewriting personal life history and create a legacy which even I had no inkling of, nor the its magnitude, as the years would roll on.  That said, here at the very end of 2017, I can say with all humility and honesty, that I am the most accomplished and successful professional wrestler in history to this day out of Northern Europe.

I eagerly await to see what 2018 brings.  While the world at large seems to be headed into a maelstrom of uncertainty, I can honestly say that the Good Lord above has blessed my life and continues to do so.  All respect the Big Man upstairs.  For me, the proof is in the pudding!

Advertisements

Does that headline ring a bell? Maybe a reminiscent throwback to the first half of the 2000s and a certain black athlete named Booker T in WWE?

What Booker Huffman – wrestling name Booker T – was referring to in his promos, where he would spout off on the stick about this very slogan, was his five reigns as pro wrestling world champion.

Well, after last night at Finland’s biggest annual pro wrestling mega-gala, Talvisota XII, I can claim the same thing. Five time! Five time! Five time! Yes, last night, I became FCF wrestling champion for the fifth time in my long and storied wrestling career, defeating a very game titleholder in a man I despise, yet respect after this war, Juhana “King Kong” Karhula.

_MAR0916_preview
In a Finnish grappling epic for the ages, lasting 25:35, this monumental main event last night was laced in tension, drama and malicious intent. Karhula had stated prior to our showdown that he couldn’t foresee the both of us continuing with FCF Wrestling after this title-vs-title war, where I put my Valhalla Nordic wrestling championship up against his FCF wrestling championship.

Well, once the dust had settled and my hand was raised triumphantly in victory, yet again showcasing that no one can survive my jumping spike piledriver, Karhula had to back up his words. He bowed out, left his boots in the ring and called it a day.

_MAR1201_preview

Well, good riddance, say I. We’ve had our differences over the past years, escalating in the grand finale that we fought last night before a sold-out house, packed with rabid, impassioned wrestling aficionados. That said, our differences are the type that can’t be resolved, and in this light, I bid Karhula adieu, sans any bells or whistles. Sayonara!

I’ll give the man credit, though, as I believe you must always give credit where credit is due: Karhula fought like his life depended on it. And his professional life, at the very least, most certainly did depend on the outcome of this match.

_MAR1158_preview

I’ve been in countless wars over my near-24 year pro career, and this was one of those matches that’ll stand out in my memories when I tell my grandchildren one day about the monolithic Nordic battles of lore that their grandfather once fought as the greatest, most celebrated professional wrestler in history out of northern Europe. A man who would even make his Viking ancestors proud.

So shout it out with me: Five time! Five time! Five time!

I hate to be the one who told you so, and not that I want to toot my own horn, but TOOT, TOOT!

Bow to the new KING, because the ascension has now taken place!

SB FCF champ 2017 01

ALL PHOTOS BY MARKO SIMONEN (www.markosimonen.com)

The time for talk is OVER.

This coming Saturday, December 2 in Helsinki at Teatteri Forum, the most anticipated match in 14 years of Finnish professional wrestling history will take place.  I hope Juhana “King Kong” Karhula is fit, able and ready, because at FCF Wrestling’s Talvisota XII that night, he’s going to have to savor every moment.

Why, you ask?

Because he has expressly stated, that FCF Wrestling is not big enough for the both of us.  One of us has to go.  We simply cannot co-exist.

Well, if Juhana Karhula wants someone to leave, he’ll have to call in the cavalry and the national guard, too, ‘cos I ain’t planning on going anywhere, except home that night carrying both the Valhalla Nordic wrestling title that I already wear, along with Karhula’s valued FCF championship.  That’s right, it’s winner take all.

Anybody who wants a background check on why this is the most important and significant match in Finnish wrestling history only needs to read our respective blogs here on WordPress to understand why this rivalry is so damned personal.  I’ve simply taken too many knives in the back from this politicking snake and he’s never been able to stomach the sight of me, even from the onset of his career 12 years ago.

main event

December 2, 2017 is going to mark the day when the greatest power shift in Finnish pro wrestling took place.  After the fact, people will write about it in the annals of grappling history, and rightfully so.

Every person reading this should be on hand to witness a definitive key turning point in our professional wrestling culture this coming Saturday night at Teatteri Forum in downtown Helsinki.  Missing out would be like missing Metallica on their last-ever farewell gig.

Talvisota XII is ready to go down in squared circle lore.  The clock is ticking.

Karhula, savor ever damn last moment.

Talvisota XII card

Charles Darwin had a theory that was adopted by the science and world at large, known as ”survival of the fittest.” Counting down the clock to Talvisota XII, the biggest annual pro wrestling event of them all in Finland, this theory somehow comes to mind.

I’ve seen FCF champion Juhana Karhula posting all kinds of updates on social media, claiming he is prepping himself with a boatload of cardio to get into match shape in less than two weeks on December 2 in Helsinki, when the bell rings. Well, I’ve got news for Karhula: that gameplan ain’t gonna save you.

main event

While Karhula has youth on his side, I have experience. I’ve been through all the wars imaginable inside of that ring, since 1994. I’ve gone in sick, hurt and tired beyond belief. And guess what? I haven’t just survived… I’ve overcome. That’s just one of the idiosyncrasies that makes ”The Rebel” StarBuck the most successful, celebrated, over-achieving professional wrestler in the Nordic wrestling history. Did you hear that? IN HISTORY.

Karhula claims that FCF Wrestling isn’t big enough for both of us, that one of us has to go. Well, guess what, Karhula? I ain’t going anywhere. And certainly not when you dictate.

You wanted the captain’s hat in FCF? Well, you got it. You manipulated and coerced the roster into believing your agenda. Congratulations for mastering the art of being a snake in the grass. You got your desired spot through subterfuge and mutiny. Sounds like a true, modern, millennial leader to me: a sociopath.

Knee strike

Karhula can expect the most hard-hitting aggression on this side of the Atlantic come December 2 at Talvisota XII (photo: Marko Simonen)

I’ve said what’s had to be said. I’ve brought the rot and festering sore inside of FCF to light. Let the people decide who they want to side with. If they want to side with a boy trying to fit into a man’s shoes – a Machiavelian dreamer hungry for personal glory, no matter the cost – then go ahead: take your side with the reigning FCF titleholder, Juhana ”King Kong” Karhula.

On the other hand, if you want true leadership under a man that represents clarity, straight-talk, concise action and no bullshit, along with a track record that speaks volumes to anyone with a brain in their heads, then you will choose the alpha male talking to you right here and now.

First off, however, I will travel to Moscow this coming Saturday, November 25 to defend my Valhalla Nordic Wrestling Championship title against the challenge of Freddy Machete at Russia’s premiere annual pro wrestling supershow, Resliada 2017. I faced Machete in a Fatal Four-way match at the Moscow City Games this past summer, so I have a good inkling of what I’m up against. It should be a kickass event!

preview_valhala

Man, I don’t know about you, but I’m literally counting down the days to Talvisota XII on December 2 in Helsinki. This date features the biggest wrestling event of the year in Finland, and speaking about Talvisota (translating to Winter War for all you non-Finns out there), I pioneered this event concept back in 2006 and I’ve seen it grow into the flagship spectacle it is for Finnish pro wrestling. This is something I’m honestly proud of, in retrospect. Talvisota has become a staple on the Finnish landscape. It’s our equivalent of WWE’s Wrestlemania.

I’ve seen a lot happen over the years, with a lot of ups and downs, and a lot of knives aimed at my back the moment I turned around (many incidents of which are excellently chronicled in my standout autobiography, Battleground Vahalla, available as a hard copy or Kindle version). I’ve shared the dressing room with people that have literally despised the ground I walked on, as well as those I hold in high regard as the scarcely few I can deem a ”brother” in this dog-eat-dog business. That’s all fine and dandy, because I must have made one hell of an indelible impact for this to have taken place! Had I been another bland face in the faceless crowd, no one would have cared and no feathers would have ever been ruffled. That said, that kind of life was never for me.

Of all of the personal issues that I’ve met head-on in the ring, of all the vendettas and grudges that have been settled inside the squared circle, I really don’t think any single one of them has been as weighty as the one that I will face at this coming Talvisota XII on December 2nd against a guy called Juhana ”King Kong” Karhula, who also happens to be the FCF champion at this point in time.

FCF Wrestling May 27th 2017, Helsinki, Finland.

Juhana Karhula

Karhula has always been ambitious, but he hasn’t always been realistic. That said, at times he has also been lazy and nonchalant, a big dreamer. At other times, I think he believed his own hype, a hype that he himself concocted to bolster his lack of self-esteem, and counted himself more of a star than he actually was. He most definitely saw himself as a bigger star than his britches were made for, and it took him several years to get himself up to speed. But when he got with the program, as it were, Karhula became very good. That I’ll give him. The Karhula that steps into the ring nowadays is as well-rounded a pro wrestler as it gets, but as a man, well … that’s a another story.

I recall hearing the echoes on the breeze tell me in recent years of how Karhula saw himself as a better trainer than me, of how he saw his skill level being over and beyond that of mine. When I heard this, I chuckled to myself. I thought that here is a young man, full of piss and vinegar and a load of pipe dreams, trying to convince himself that he’s better than the big daddy of the fold. I whimsically passed it off as youthful bravado and over-ambition.

When I ran the FCF ship for a number of years, I let Karhula take the lead of training the new talents that came in the door. He was hungry to show his worth and he felt up to the task, and so this lot was given to him. He obviously took this as a sign of weakness from me, and proceded to run mutiny with the younger members of the Finnish wrestling fold, poisoning their minds over the past years against the old captain of the ship. My style of old school man-up leadership didn’t sit well with many of the ”boys” (intonation: not quite men yet), who would gripe behind my back about shit but never had the balls to come and talk to me about it. Karhula became the in-between and sponge, as it were, for the gripers, and he used that energy as firepower to cook up his own little mutiny. A man with integrity would have told those gripers to man-up and go talk to the boss directly, just as they have to do with Vince McMahon in WWE. When I look back, the only ”reasoning” I can find for his behavior and choices can be summed up as petty jealousy. Sure, even then, Karhula led others by example: his example only was one of subversion, spinelessness and again, mutiny.

The fact is Juhana Karhula was never better than the man that taught him, even though he does everything in his power to avoid mentioning my name when it comes to who trained him up and who mentored him. Simply put, he hated – and still hates – what he could never be.

Oh, on the surface it looks very different, I’m sure. I’m certain that when most folks look at the way Karhula carries himself and the way he makes his case, they’ll be deluded into falling for the mirage of the ”good guy,” or the ”honest guy.” The cold, hard truth is that Karhula is most definitely NOT a ”good guy.”

Even in one of his last blogs, Karhula tried to paint this picture of FCF Wrestling having been a personal ”playground” for me when I ran the ship like a tyrant, as he put it. What he fails to realize and give me credit for is, that I opened numerous doors for not only him, but also a litany of other Finnish talents, when I was at the helm. It was through my personal sacrifices, connections and labors, that everyone got a piece of the pie. I was the baker, the roster were the beneficiaries, sitting at the round table, waiting to be served. Of course Karhula doesn’t want anyone to see this picture, because it completely destroys his argument and attempt to discredit me. And be it said, that every single business and organization needs a clear-cut leader at the top, someone whose word is iron law, so that everyone underneath has a clear direction and concise marching orders, as to what is expected of them to make the co-operative effort work.

The truth is, that the yuppie, liberal, millennial roster simply didn’t like the way StarBuck ran the game, which was LIKE A WRESTLING PROMOTION. After 25 years spent out in the mat game worldwide, you’d think these kids would have had the faith to understand a time-tested pro was at the helm, running things like they had been run for numerous decades in our industry. But no, they wanted a culture club, a little after-school play park where everyone got their wishes granted and everyone was made to feel like a special snowflake. And who better to choose to lead a juvenile lot like that, than one of their own?

karhula and starbuck standoff

Karhula’s a snake in the grass. He’s a young man full of resentment and jealousy. Where he could have gone the extra mile like I did in making his career on a global level, he simply dreamed and talked. He didn’t put in the sacrifice and effort needed, nor did he show the must-have heart and ballsy daring that blind leaps of faith require to make it in any chosen endeavor.

No. Karhula simply rode the coattails of upper management, expecting to be treated like a special charity case or favored child. He thought that his inherent talent warranted him all the blessings that would be passed his way from those in power. Someone else laid down the pavement that he was then able to stroll on. And like a greedy, self-serving child, he just expected more and more. Chalk it up to a false sense of entitlement for a millenial child.

Then, when he saw his opening in late 2015, Karhula realized that now was his time. The Finnish wrestling roster had changed dramatically since the golden days of the early 2010’s in FCF, when under my auspices, we were the ONLY office out of Europe to have a working relationship with a main Japanese wrestling promotion. A lot of the veteran talents from that era had either moved on to live in other countries or had hung it up, moving on in their lives to other endeavors and vocations.

Now, a new stock of upstarts and mid-card hopefuls were filling up the bulk of the roster. The internal climate was right for an overhaul. Youth beckoned unto youth and like called out to like. The pipe dreams of one became the pipe dreams of many. Karhula had his uprising, captaining his grand bastard mutiny, and so he was chosen by the disoriented, disenfranchised younglings that he helped coach up, as their new spiritual leader.

In came the liberal, soft, democratic values of Juhana Karhula. Out went the cold, hard realities of 25 years spent in the global wrestling industry and the conservative leadership of StarBuck.

Well, guess what? On December 2nd in Helsinki, when Talvisota XII takes place, this isn’t just going to be another wrestling match. It’s not some ”storyline” for the fans to amuse themselves by. No. This is going to be a personal war of attrition and I’m going to take deep-rooted pleasure in breaking one Juhana ”King Kong” Karhula into pieces.

I could give a damn whether anyone sides with me that night. Times have changed, and so be it. I’m going into that ring to annihilate and decimate Juhana Karhula. I’m going to strip him of his title belt, I’m going to forcefully eviscerate his false sense of ”honor” and I’m going to make an example of him in front of the entire, youth-infested FCF locker room.

December 2nd will be known as the day that a false leader, captaining his own, personal mutiny against the father of an entire cultural phenomenon in the country of Finland, meets his own, due demise.

die karhula

Well, ladies and gents, it seems that 2017 is turning out to be one of my better years in the wrestling game.

Firstly, my long-awaited autobiography Battleground Vahalla came out through Crowbar Press, and it has since been released on Kindle also!  This book has been selling great, and I am stoked about its success!

Shawn Khan Battleground Valhalla StarBuck

Shawn Khan, the Director of the Middle East and USA for Pro Wrestling Entertainment Pakistan, whom I wrestled for in May of this year, mugs with my autobiography!

Whereas this summer, I became the first-ever Valhalla Nordic Wrestling Champion, a title covering four Nordic countries (Finland, Sweden, Norway and Denmark), I also find myself as the number one contender for the Finnish FCF Wrestling championship title, with a title shot pending and upcoming on December 2 against current FCF titleholder Juhana “King Kong” Karhula at the biggest annual event in Finnish pro wrestling, Talvisota XII.

FCF Haastajalista_17.10

As of late this autumn, I’ve traveled on several occasions to Germany to wrestle, doing very well for myself there against the top European competition, against the likes of Pascal Spalter of Germany and James Mason of England.  Just this past weekend, I toppled Native American superstar and former WWE name Tatanka in Delmenhorst, Germany.

StarBuck vs. James Mason POW Germany

I had one hell of a technical match in Hannover, Germany on October 14 against POW Intercontinental champion James Mason.

On November 11, I will travel to Wittorf, Germany to wrestle a mammoth of a man in Voodoo from the UK at DWA Harley Night XVII, and on November 25, I travel to Moscow, Russia to fight at Wrestliada 2017, which is the biggest Russian pro wrestling event of the year on an annual basis.

DWA Harley Night 2017

In addition, I have some marquee gigs with my band Stoner Kings coming up on November 17 in Helsinki in support of Swedish heavy rock powerhouse Sparzanza at Nosturi’s Alakerta venue and on November 18 in Tallinn, Estonia at Rockstars, where Stoner Kings will be joined by Redneck Rampage from Estonia and Hold from Finland.

Stoner Kings 2017

Stoner Kings are back on the attack, with monsterously potent new music soon coming out! (photo: Marko Simonen)

Right now, I am in the studio with both my Stoner Kings and Crossfyre bands, as we have new music coming out at the end of this year also!

In closing, get this: the It Came From The Desert movie (based on the famous 1989 Amiga video game) that I play a key role in has now been sold worldwide, as far as Japan!  Add to that the fact that Finland’s first-ever superhero action movie Rendel has been scooping up tons of international acclaim and licenses, and I’d feel comfortable saying the snowball of momentum is super-hot right now!

It Came From The Desert JAPAN

Stay tuned, more infos coming soon!