PROGRESS Wrestling yesterday made a landscape changing announcement, introducing a new title – the Proteus Championship.
Following a number of cryptic tweets from their Twitter account, a video was released today where ring announcer and co-owner Jim Smallman announced the new title, officially retiring the Atlas Championship in the process.
The Atlas title was somewhat of a unique concept, acting as the inverse of a Junior Heavyweight title, in that only wrestlers weighing over 205lbs were eligible to challenge for it (plus Joseph Conners for some reason. Seriously. Why?). Current Progress World champion Walter defeated the then Atlas Division champion Trent Seven to unify both titles at night 2 of Super Strong Style 16 earlier this year, winning the title for a record third time.
The name of the new title is appropriately named after the Greek god Proteus, who was able to morph into any form he wished. A rumble match will determine the inaugural champion, and will take place at Chapter 95: Still Chasing, Progress’ next ‘big’ show, which will take place at Ally Pally on 15th September.
The introduction of this exciting new title offers the possibility for a number of unique match stipulations. Below, we consider 5 of these that could happen:
1. The London Championship
The first option involves the champion invoking a clause that the title is defended ONLY in London. This would mean that fans attending Camden shows can always expect a title match to be on the card, which has not been the case as of late with Men’s champion Walter and Women’s champion Jordynne Grace often overseas at the same time as Progress events.
This also gives the option for the title to be defended at other London based shows such as Attack! at the Dome, Battle Pro, Pro Wrestling Soul, and Wrestling League which often feature wrestlers from the Progress roster.
2. The Wasteman Championship
The second scenario would see Roy Johnson winning the Proteus championship, and refusing to defend it in any match other than the infamous Wasteman Challenge that Big Wavy has become synonymous with.
The Wasteman Challenge has become somewhat of a tradition and is often a highlight at Progress’ annual Super Strong Style 16 tournament. Essentially, the Wasteman Challenge begins as a rap battle that descends into a multi-competitor scramble, with the first pinfall or submission claiming the victory.
Speaking of multi-competitor scrambles….
3. The Thunderbastard Championship
Another signature match of Progress’, and one that has not been seen in some time.
For the benefit of the unenlightened, the Thunderbastard match is essentially a single-elimination, multi-competitor match that combines elements of a gauntlet match and the Royal Rumble. The match begins with two competitors in the ring, and at predefined time intervals another wrestler’s music will play and that wrestler will enter the match.
The first-ever Thunderbastard match saw the likes of Paul Robinson, Will Ospreay, Marty Scurll, and “Wild Boar” Mike Hitchman battle it out.
Then again, who would be crazy enough to want to defend their title in a match where the odds of retaining are so slim? Maybe not that one…
4. Dance off Championship
One of the examples listed by Jim in the video was that the title could be defended in a dance-off if the champion so wishes. While this was likely an exaggerated throw away comment to get over how unique this title is going to be, it remains a very real possibility, hence its inclusion on this list.
Upon hearing the news, a friend of TWM in the form of Sugar Dunkerton took to twitter to announce his interest in the title:
Other Progress wrestlers who have been known to enjoy a boogie from time to time and are likely to want to challenge for the Dance Off title include Session Moth Martina, Millie McKenzie, ‘Sexy’ Travis Banks, and Amir Jordan. There was also this one guy who loved dancing from the 1980s, but I don’t know if he’s around anymore….
5. Intergender Title
We here at TWM Wrestling News are strong advocates of intergender wrestling. We believe that everyone is equal, regardless of gender, and in 2019 we deserve a championship that reflects this.
In fact, former Progress wrestler and current NXT Superstar Tegan Nox (FKA Nixon Newell) took to Twitter to declare her interest in the title:
With female wrestlers such Millie McKenzie, Session Moth Martina, Charli Evans, Candyfloss and Gisele Shaw regularly squaring off against their male counterparts across the UK (fairly often having matches of the night in the process), and recently Tessa Blanchard and Sami Callahan took part in the first intergender match to main event a major Pay Per View, now seems like the perfect time to introduce such a title.
We know that the Proteus champion can decide which match stipulation they wish to defend the title in, however it remains to be seen whether the Proteus champion has any say as to who they defend against.
The possibilities for this title are endless, and the flexibility for the Progress booking committee to change the direction of the title should ensure the division never gets stale. We here at TWM are certainly looking forward to it!