For the second consecutive year, "Bad Boy" Joey Janela and Game Changer Wrestling are promoting the wild "Joey Janela Spring Break" show on WrestleMania weekend. While last year's had significant buzz, not everything went according to plan.
I spoke with Janela recently, and asked him about the planned appearance of former WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Duane "Gillberg" Gill that didn't end up happening at the initial event. According to Janela, Gillberg wasn't the only surprise set for the show that fell through.
"We had a couple of surprises booked and none of them actually showed up, besides Virgil of course," said Janela. "Gillberg got drunk with his old tag team partner Barry Hardy. Him and Barry Hardy decided to get pretty trashed and not come to the show. There were a few others that we had booked, too. We had Akeem (One Man Gang) booked too. We even bought him a dashiki and the hat. Something happened where he said he had to deal with some insurance company and couldn't make it. I don't know. This year we have surprises and they'll be there"
In addition to Gillberg, an attitude era name in Dan Severn ended up headlining the event. At nearly 60 years old, Severn took on fellow UFC veteran Matt Riddle in a match that went on in the wee hours of the morning. Janela told Fightful.com that wasn't the actual plan going in, but the show running long put a more-than-willing Severn wrestling at 3 AM.
"The clusterfuck ended up being an actual clusterfuck," said Janela. "We didn't plan for the show to go on that long. Dan Severn was a good sport and probably put on one of his best matches ever that night. Who would have thought in 2017 that Dan Severn would basically come out of retirement and put on a great wrestling match with Riddle. He's gotta have great cardio for his age. He didn't want to fly down. He wanted to drive all the way down from Michigan. He said that he was the real road warrior and wanted to bring down some sparring equipment because maybe he thought it was a real shoot. Who knows."
"I said The Great Sasuke and (Game Changer Wrestling) said 'We don't know if we can make that happen. That's kind of a crazy one.' I emailed Michinoku Pro numerous times and got no response. Start sliding in some DMs, no response. Started hitting up some Japanese wrestlers asking if they could get us in touch with Sasuke. Some we'd get response from, some we couldn't. We hit up Kikutaro, and he sealed the deal within 15 minutes," said Janela.
You can see Joey Janela's Spring Break II on Friday, April 6 at 11:55 PM CST in New Orleans, Louisiana at the Pontchartrain Convention Center. You can also watch the show on WWNLive.com. You can see Fightful.com's full interview with Joey Janela above!