EVOLVE continually refreshes its talent roster, bringing in new people regularly, and Gabe Sapolsky feels the turnover is a good thing.
Speaking to Sports Illustrated, Sapolsky talked about EVOLVE's 2017 when it came to talent. He says that the likes of Keith Lee, Zack Sabre Jr. and Fred Yehi have evolved into top talent that were given a stage this year in EVOLVE and thrived, becoming some of the top independent talent in the world:
Meanwhile in 2017 we have seen some talent really step up and take those open main events spots. WWN Champion Keith Lee has grown into a top singles wrestler this year, Matt Riddle is a superstar in every sense of the word, Zack Sabre Jr. can claim ‘best in the world’ bragging rights as EVOLVE Champion and Fred Yehi has grown to the point we call him the 2017 WWN MVP for the work he has done across the WWN brands. However, we are still in a growth period for talent. The talent is there, they just need the stage to make their names. This is the best part of independent wrestling to me, watching someone start their journey as relatively unknown and grow into a main eventer and then move on to WWE/NXT. I feel there is lots of talent out there with that potential, now it is our job to give them the forum to realize that potential
For 2018, he does name some names he sees reaching the same levels: WALTER, AR Fox, DJZ, Austin Theory and Darby Allin. The latter two will be part of the next EVOLVE shows squaring off against one another. Like Keith Lee and Zack Sabre Jr., they all have a chance to make a name for themselves in 2018:
We are doing Allin vs. Theory this Saturday in NYC with the idea of giving them the chance to steal the show and elevate themselves going into 2018,” said Sapolsky. “The first EVOLVE show featured talent like Johnny Gargano, Ricochet, Kyle O’Reilly, Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Luke Harper, TJ Perkins and gave them that stage. It is our goal to do that with the next generation now and take the fans on that journey of becoming stars.
We are adding new wrestlers to the roster this weekend from total unknowns to elite talent like AR Fox, DJZ and WALTER from Germany,” said Sapolsky. “We are freshening up every aspect of the promotion from in ring talent to presentation. It is the start of a new chapter for EVOLVE and I feel completely rejuvenated about it.
EVOLVE 96 and EVOLVE 97 take place this Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Both will stream live at WWNLive.com.