I feel lucky to have stumbled into getting to know Matt Sells.
I’ll qualify that by saying this is the Facebook/social networking version of “getting to know”, so when I say that I mean we have gotten to know the funniest and best aspects of one another. All of the stuff that’s worth taking twenty seconds to type on your keyboard or your phone.
I first met Matt and his wife Jen when they hosted Jonathan Williams’ birthday party. The name Matt Sells sounded familiar, but I wasn’t sure why. Then I got the actual invitation and saw that it was being hosted by Matt “Sex” Sells. That name I knew. I wasn’t sure from where, but I knew he was a wrestler and I was pretty sure he had annoyed me whenever it was I had seen him (I mean that in a good way – like the guy had been a solid heel or at least arrogant somehow).
The guy whose house I went to was entirely different. He was hilarious and self-deprecating and – I found out – recovering from an injury. He seemed to be on the mend and was definitely excited about returning to the ring, even though it was still months away. I liked the determination I saw in those few hours I was around him. We ended up being Facebook Friends (as one does) and Twitter Twats and whatever. The guy is worth following, as he’s a regular updater who says a bunch of funny stuff.
Another weird thing is that an old buddy of mine and original answerer of the 13 Questions, James T. Warbington, is somehow related to Matt’s wrestling promoter wife, Jen. I think it’s an in-law situation or something. Small world, though. I’ll have to talk Mrs. Sells into doing one of these so I can hit the Triple Crown of wrestling family interviews. It’s a trilogy! Like Lord of the Rings!
Sells has also done stand-up a few times, which I respect about as much as I do wrestling. It’s a tough gig. My work schedule hasn’t allowed me to see him yet, but there are some clips on YouTube that have captured his comedic stylings.
And now it’s time for Matt Sells’ big return to the Squared Circle.
1) What’s it like to be Matt “Sex” Sells?
A) It's just like being anyone else . . . except with more pleather, spandex, and baby oil.
2) What was your favorite toy when you were a kid?
3) What is one album everybody should own?
A) If I have to choose just one, it's definitely Motley Crüe's "Dr. Feelgood". If I get a second choice, it's GnR's "Appetite For Destruction", which is the ultimate workout album. I think it's been scientifically proven that anyone can bench press at least 15 pounds heavier while listening to that album.
4) Who is your favorite wrestler and why?
A) I was always a huge Mick Foley fan. He was hardcore, but his matches always told a great story. His first autobiography is what inspired me to get into wrestling. I think it was the first realization I had that you can be intelligent AND be a wrestler. It was definitely cool getting the chance to hang out with him for a few hours a couple of years ago. Thanks to a few drinks and my fanboyism, it became a bad Chris Farley SNL sketch. "You remember that time . . . Yeah, that was awesome". Sorry Mick!
As anyone who has seen my look and heard my promos can attest to, Chris Jericho has always been my other favorite wrestler. He's everything I've always enjoyed: He's a wrestler, a rockstar, and he's funny.
5) You’ve been recovering from your ACL tear for quite some time now. Can you tell me about what happened and what you’ve had to do to get back into ring shape?
A) I was in Miami during WrestleMania weekend to participate in a seminar/tryout for Dragon Gate USA. About 30 seconds into my tryout match, I stepped to throw a punch and my left foot stuck in the mat. The upper part of my body rotated, while the bottom half of my leg remained stationary, and I heard a loud pop (Which is kind of cool, since I don't normally hear a pop during my matches. Bad joke. I'll continue.). I continued the match while placing 90% of my weight on my right leg. I picked up my opponent for a Samoan Drop, and felt my knee buckle. I got him to quickly roll me up quickly and hopped out of the ring. Despite it being the most painful thing I've ever felt, I insisted I was ok. I even joked to DGUSA booker Gabe Sapolsky that it was ok; I couldn't sue because I had signed a waiver. He didn't seem to appreciate my sense of humor. I stayed and watched the rest of the matches, then hobbled on one leg down the streets of Miami to my car that was parked a mile away from the venue.
As always, I waited a while to get it checked out, because . . . well, I'm an idiot. It wasn't until about a month later that I was told that I had completely torn my ACL. I had surgery on May 31, and began the rehab process 5 days later by hopping on the stationary bike for the most pathetic 5 minutes of cardio ever. Then I just kept adding a minute or two each day, until I was doing 45-60 minutes on the bike per day. I basically had to relearn how to contract my quads and hamstrings in order to regain full ROM in my knee. I worked with a physical therapist some (who was awesome) and did a large part of the rehab on my own.
I've integrated more sport-specific stuff into my training that should help me in the ring. I'm working a lot more on balance, speed, and agility. My vertical leap is already better than it was pre-injury (It's 3 inches instead of 2!). With the exception of the holidays, I've been very strict with my diet. As far as in-ring stuff, it's nice being married to a promoter, since we ride together I have to get to shows a gazillion hours before the show and stay a gazillion hours after the show, so I've had plenty of time to get in the ring and work on stuff. I guess I've been doing something right, since my return date is going to be about 2-3 months earlier than I had anticipated.
6) What would be your dream match?
A) I'd love to wrestle Mick Foley in some sort of hardcore gimmick match, but I want him to slam me in the tacks. It'd be great to main event WrestleMania against Chris Jericho. Lastly, I want to wrestle Trish Stratus, because . . . do I really need to explain that one?
7) How did you get into pro wrestling?
A) In 2002, I was playing high school baseball. I was getting tired of the politics of high school sports (and there are NO politics in pro wrestling!), so I quit the team, complete with a nice little Stone Cold salute to the coach. I had read Foley's book about a year earlier, and decided that I wanted to be a pro wrestler. I researched wrestling schools and found that Dory Funk, Jr. ran a pro wrestling camp for teens at his Funking Conservatory in Ocala, FL. I went to one camp and I was hooked. I scraped together the cash to go to more camps there, and met some guys from NWA Wildside. I found out about their school and finished my training in Cornelia, GA with Todd Sexton in 2003.
8) Can you tell me about your favorite match that you’ve wrestled?
A) Winning the TNT Heavyweight Title in 2010 will always be one of my favorite moments. The series of matches that same year with my former tag team partner Ryan Michaels were also great. I think it's a mark out moment to be able to work multiple fantastic matches with your former tag partner. Ryan will tell you differently, but I'm Shawn and he's Marty. And of course wrestling Ron Simmons in 2009 was an awesome experience.
9) Which actor do you feel like you could sit and watch for hours no matter what they were doing and why?
A) Christian Bale. I'm comfortable enough with my sexuality to admit that I have a little man crush on him. Plus, 8-year old me is really jealous of him; he's Batman AND John Connor! If you can classify him as an "actor", I'd also have to go with Schwarzenegger, just because all the stuff that goes "boom!" in his movies engages my short attention span.
10) What inspires you to do what you do?
A) What inspires every wrestler? Money, booze, and ring rats. Oops, I said "ring rat", so now I'll be getting threatening Facebook messages from multiple girls saying I called them a ring rat, though no name was ever mentioned. Wait, what was I talking about? Oh yeah. It's the belief that that if I continue to work hard, good things will happen. I'm thankful for the things that I've accomplished in the sport thus far, but there's so much more that I want to accomplish. ROH started the same year I broke into wrestling, so it's always been a goal of mine to wrestle for them. Every wrestler dreams of becoming the next Flair, Michaels, Hart, or The Rock, and winning the heavyweight title at WrestleMania; in that regard, I'm just like every other wrestler.
11) What is something you cannot wait to see or have more of?
A) This is a family-friendly blog, right? (Editor’s Note: Ha, ha! No.) Wrestling matches would be the first obvious answer, so I'll say that, as well as wanting more tattoos.
12) Is there a movie that should never be remade and if so which one?
A) Green Lantern, because it was everything a comic book movie should be . . . I'm kidding! I'd have to go with the Back to the Future trilogy. No one else could be Marty McFly except Michael J. Fox.
13) Closer – Matt “Sex” Sells must have a whole lot of pent-up aggression after nine months on the sidelines. What’s your plan now? Take as long as you want.
A) The plan is to pick back up right where I left off. I was starting to gain a little momentum before the injury, so I'm going to keep that going. By the end of 2013, I want my name coming out of people's mouths when they talk about the best wrestlers in Georgia. By the end of 2014, I want my name to be recognized on a national level.
As far as the immediate future, I plan on making an impact in the promotions I was already wrestling for. I'll be back at PCW really soon (remember remember the 5th of January. Wait, that doesn't work). My first match back at PWR will be on January 20th for the Jason Speed Memorial 6-Man Showcase in Gainesville, GA. My teammates (who should be a pleasant surprise to many of the long-term TNT/PWR fans) and I plan on bringing the Memorial Cup home with us. Check out prowrestlingresurrection.com for more info about what's sure to be one hell of an event.
Dates are starting to fill up fast, but I'm always looking for more bookings. Promoters can contact me on Facebook, Twitter (@MattSexSells), or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Lastly, be sure to come check out my next stand-up performance at The Laughing Skull Lounge tonight.
2013 is going to be a Sexperience like no other!
There it is, folks. The man will be back in Platinum Championship Wrestling this Saturday night in Porterdale, GA. You’ll have to be there to find out what he has in store.