This past August, newLEGACYinc held its annual Fighting Back 2020 charity stream to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society. Over the course of 14 hours, AEW stars Evil Uno, Brodie Lee, and Colt Cabana along with WWE stars Xavier Woods and Dakota Kai joined the BIG BOIS from nL to help raise over $55,000.
Speaking to Fightful, the guys from newLEGACY recalled the history of Fighting Back and how they've influenced the gaming landscape in wrestling.
"Many, many years ago, we heard from a few of our friends that streamed (twitch.tv/IRMStream) that they were going to be raising money for charity, and it was something myself and the nL guys had talked about briefly doing before but never really got around to it. We decided to throw ourselves into that and do a 24 hour marathon stream, playing games and raising money for charity, and the rest is history! We've done it every year since then, and the Fighting Back team has been nothing but awesome to us. Evil Uno was on our first Fighting Back broadcast (an inside joke of us calling him The Big Dog, and calling Stu Grayson the Wildcat actually ended up on the wrestling show that Fighting Back put on!)," said Johnny, who essentially serves as the voice of nL.
Slip, who is one of the original members of the group added, "Evil Uno has been a part of Fighting Back since its inception and should be credited with being one of the driving forces in keeping the spirit of Phrank Morin (the independent wrestler that passed away from cancer that spurred on the creation of Fighting Back as a live wrestling event) alive and well over a decade later. We would not have had the opportunity to work with the amazing people involved in Fighting Back without Evil Uno's involvement."
Xavier Woods launching UpUpDownDown on YouTube in 2015 took gaming in wrestling to new heights with talent getting more of a chance to show their personality off-camera in a laid back environment. During the pandemic, wrestlers have flocked to Twitch as a way to continue to interact with fans while also killing their newfound free time.
Unfortunately for talent in WWE, the company has issued a mandate that reportedly asks them to use their real names on third-party platforms and WWE will now be taking a percentage Twitch revenue.
When asked if WWE talent has ever asked for permission to appear on a nL stream, Johnny said, "Not that I'm aware of! We've had some friends get signed to companies in the past, and wondered if that would impact how much they could do with us in terms of being on stream or just recording content, but nothing has ever came up where we had to wait for them to get permission."
AEW has taken the opposite approach of WWE, promoting wrestler's Twitch channels on television and social media. Commenting on how the two companies have handled things, the lovely Australian and true leader of nL Duel said, "I believe that WWE shouldn't have the right to limit their wrestler's ability to do outside activites such as live streaming or cameo, but are fully in their right to punish those who negatively affect their company through such activities. I believe that covering these issues on a case-by-case basis would be much more effective to both the morale of your talent and to the cases that need punishment, rather than an easy fix like a blanket ban."
Wholesome Australian Adam said, "I feel wrestlers streaming on twitch is no different to them using any other form of social media. They are independent after all; and like all mediums if they're not using it appropriately that's a whole different issue. But streaming and being accessible like that can bring a whole new set of eyes to you and the product you work for. It has a lot of potential to do lots of positive things like we've already seen as well as engaging with communities that would never be aware of them otherwise."
Woods got ahead of WWE's new Twitch edict by using the name Austin Creed on UpUpDownDown and creating a community of wrestling and gaming fans.
Arguably the most successful franchise in the UpUpDownDown universe is the weekly Uno game with #DaParty (Woods, Tyler Breeze, Cesaro, and Adam Cole) engaging in the classic card game with some new twists.
Those who enjoy #DaParty playing Uno can partially thank newLEGACY, as Woods first began playing Uno with the nL boys and Chris Denker before bringing the series to UUDD.
"He owes us everything and then some, and one day I will make him pay up!" joked Johnny. "Really though, The fact that he's gotten so much enjoyment out of playing that game, and turning it into a major series on his channel, is so awesome to see. I'm not sure how many games of that version of Uno he played before he started doing it on his channel, but I know he would play with myself and DenkOps a bunch and I knew that if he did something with it, it'd become pretty popular. He rules."
While there has been crossover between nL and UUDD on the nL channel, fans of both brands have yet to see the BIG BOIS make their way to UpUpDownDown. Woods claims that anyone can step up to challenge for the UUDD Championship -- now the LeftRightLeftRight Championship -- but why hasn't he allowed nL legend Hitial to get a crack at the gold?
"Austin already knows the power of Htial, so I think he knows better than to allow him anywhere near a title shot, because it'd never come back!" said Johnny.
Duel added, "I feel like if Htial challenged for the UUDD title, nobody would be able to defeat him and the demanding UUDD schedule would mean he'd have less time to spend with us and I wouldn't like that."
While Slip said, "Dude is a monster in a variety of games, so if they put the belt up in a first person shooter, platformer, or any game of skill and strategy, I see the belt coming home to the Big Boys."
If Woods truly wants to end the tyrannical reign of Breeze and LRLR, H-Tizzy might be his only hope.
To learn more about newLEGACYinc, check out their Twitch channel by clicking here. The group plays a variety of wrestling games and features a welcoming and fun-loving community.